William McMichael "Bill" Shepherd is an American former Navy SEAL, aerospace, ocean, and mechanical engineer, and NASA astronaut who served as Commander of Expedition 1, the first crew on the International Space Station. He is also a recipient of the Congressional Space Medal of Honor.
STS-27 was the twenty-seventh and the third for Atlantis. It carried a classified payload for the Department of Defence. The heat shielding was substantially damaged during lift-off, impacting the right wing. The crew narrowly survived re-entry with a steal bar taking the brunt of the heat before beginning to burn through the aluminum structure.Low Earth Orbit
Soyuz TM-31 began Expedition 1 by carrying 3 cosmonauts and astronauts to the International Space Station. Russian Commander, cosmonaut Yuri Gidzenko alongside Flight Engineer, Sergei Krikalev and Flight Engineer/Spaceflight Participant William Shepherd launched aboard the Soyuz spacecraft on October 31, 2000, 07:52:47 UTC. They docked with the station two days later. During their stay there, crew performed first maintenance and repair works, carried out first experiments and conducted several EVAs. They were also visited by several Progress resupply spacecrafts and STS-97 and STS-98 crews, and welcomed aboart STS-102 with the next expedition crew. Expedition 1 returned with STS-102, landing safely back on Earth on 21 March 2001, 07:33:06 UTC.Low Earth Orbit
STS-102 was a Space Shuttle mission to the International Space Station (ISS) flown by Space Shuttle Discovery and launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida. STS-102 flew in March 2001; its primary objectives were resupplying the ISS and rotating the Expedition 1 and Expedition 2 crews.Low Earth Orbit
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is an independent agency of the executive branch of the United States federal government responsible for the civilian space program, as well as aeronautics and aerospace research. NASA have many launch facilities but most are inactive. The most commonly used pad will be LC-39B at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.