A little more than 30 years ago, on April 25, 1990, the Space Shuttle Discovery set out on a mission that would forever change the way we see space.
The STS-31 mission saw Discovery and its five crew members deploy the Hubble Space Telescope into orbit, and Hubble has since shared impressive deep space images, leading to breakthroughs in astrophysics and space exploration.
Former NASA astronaut, Dr. Cathy Sullivan, was part of the original STS-31 mission, citing her as the highlights of her illustrious career as an astronaut and explorer, including being the first American woman to walk in space and the first woman to dive. With Challenger Deep, the deepest ocean space.
“To anyone who’s been on the Hubble Team, it’s like the defining thing about their space career. I was part of what we call the Marine a chipboard owner – (where) you help build it and start it … that was for five years. It was a third of my career. At NASA.
Sullivan was speaking during an exclusive interview with Lego Game Makers in which she revealed the LEGO space shuttle NASA Discovery kit, a detailed recreation of the STS-31 mission. The group commemorates that groundbreaking moment in space history and also celebrates the 40th anniversary since the first space shuttle flight on April 12, 1981.
Consisting of 2,354 pieces, the collection features the Discovery Orbiter with functional landing gear, payload compartment doors, elevators and rudder, as well as the Hubble Space Telescope itself, which can be folded and contained within the payload compartment or expanded using solar energy. Set and displayed separately.
Seeing the Lego set brought it back to April 25, 1990 when “we had this moment with Hubble at the end of Canadarm’s arm as it raised from the bay and prepares to gently drop it and leave it in orbit to begin its amazing mission.”
Sullivan was a key member of the SS-31 mission, participating in “equipping, testing, and positively ensuring all equipment needed to repair Hubble in orbit”.
The promise made by NASA was that the telescope would last 15 years. Said the 69-year-old geologist, who is currently president and CEO of the United States Science and Industry Center Company.
“The electronics were upgraded … in the end the original solar arrays were removed and replaced with arrays that are approximately one-third smaller but produce 20% more electricity.
“Look for another satellite that has been optimized a thousand times while in orbit and has lived twice its life! This is the magic of Hubble,” said Sullivan.
During the interview, available to watch at lego.com/gobeyond, Sullivan also contemplates that the main reason women in the past never thought about becoming astronauts or taking on science in general is not because they haven’t seen anyone who looks like they can be seen as a role model. , But because they were told it was not allowed.
“Legislation was passed in the 1970s when our society began to develop and it recognized that roles for humans should not be excluded by decree. Let people see where their abilities can take them,” she said.
There is a catch phrase today, “If I can’t see it, I can’t be.” But if it was really true, no human would ever do anything for the first time. And that’s what guides me.
“And my parents were great parents never adjusting our interests or desires. Nobody can modify what you care about!”