STS026-S-031 (29 Sept 1988) --- Just moments after ignition, the Space Shuttle Discovery, mated to two solid rocket boosters and an external fuel tank, heads, toward Earth orbit. The mission marks Discovery?s first flight since September of 1985 and NASA?s first manned mission since September of 1985 and NASA?s first manned mission since the 51L Challenger accident of January 28, 1986. Onboard the spacecraft are Astronauts Frederick H. (Rick) Hauck, commander; Richard O. Covey, pilot; and George D. Nelson, John M. (Mike) Lounge and David C. Hilmers, mission specialists. Discovery?s dry weight is 171,419 pounds. The tracking and data relay satellite and its inertial upper stage total about 37,000 pounds.