Space Shuttle Endeavour

STS-127 Launch Pad 39A.jpg
Space Shuttle Endeavour on launch pad 39A prior to mission STS-127, May 31, 2009
OV designationOV-105
CountryUnited States
Contract awardJuly 31, 1987
Named afterHMS Endeavour (1764)
StatusRetired, displayed at California Science Center in Los Angeles, California
First flightSTS-49
May 7, 1992 – May 16, 1992
Last flightSTS-134
May 16, 2011 - June 1, 2011
No. of missions25
Crew members173
Time spent in space296 days, 3 hours, 34 minutes, 2 seconds
No. of orbits4,671
Distance travelled122,883,151 mi (197,761,262 km)
Satellites deployed3
Mir dockings1
ISS dockings12

Space Shuttle Endeavour (Orbiter Vehicle Designation: OV-105) is a retired orbiter from NASA's Space Shuttle program and the fifth and final operational shuttle built. It embarked on its first mission, STS-49, in May 1992 and its 25th and final mission, STS-134, in May 2011.[1][2][3] STS-134 was expected to be the final mission of the Space Shuttle program,[4] but with the authorization of STS-135, Atlantis became the last shuttle to fly.

The United States Congress approved the construction of Endeavour in 1987 to replace Challenger, which was lost in 1986.

Structural spares built during the construction of Discovery and Atlantis were used in its assembly. NASA chose, on cost grounds, to build Endeavour from spares rather than refitting Enterprise or accepting a Rockwell International proposal to build two shuttles for the price of one.[citation needed]


Endeavour rollout ceremony in May 1991
Endeavour as photographed from the International Space Station as it approached the station during STS-118
Endeavour appears to straddle the stratosphere and mesosphere in this photo taken from the International Space Station

The orbiter is named after the British HMS Endeavour, the ship which took Captain James Cook on his first voyage of discovery (1768–1771).[5] This is why the name is spelled in the British English manner, rather than the American English ("Endeavor"). This has caused confusion, including when NASA itself misspelled a sign on the launch pad in 2007.[6] The Space Shuttle carried a piece of the original wood from Cook’s ship inside the cockpit.[7] The name also honored Endeavour, the Command Module of Apollo 15, which was also named after Cook's ship.

Endeavour was named through a national competition involving students in elementary and secondary schools. Entries included an essay about the name, the story behind it and why it was appropriate for a NASA shuttle, and the project that supported the name. Endeavour was the most popular entry, accounting for almost one-third of the state-level winners. The national winners were Senatobia Middle School in Senatobia, Mississippi, in the elementary division and Tallulah Falls School in Tallulah Falls, Georgia, in the upper school division. They were honored at several ceremonies in Washington, D.C., including a White House ceremony where then-President George H. W. Bush presented awards to each school.[8]

Endeavour was delivered by Rockwell International Space Transportation Systems Division in May 1991 and first launched a year later, in May 1992, on STS-49. Rockwell International claimed that it had made no profit on Space Shuttle Endeavour, despite construction costing US$2.2 billion.[citation needed]

Other Languages
latviešu: Endeavour
മലയാളം: എൻഡവർ
norsk nynorsk: Romferja «Endeavour»
polski: Endeavour
Simple English: Space Shuttle Endeavour
slovenščina: Raketoplan Endeavour
suomi: Endeavour
українська: Індевор (шатл)
粵語: 奮進號