This orbiter tribute of space shuttle Columbia, or OV-102, hangs in Firing Room 4 of the Launch Control Center at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The tribute features Columbia, the “first of the fleet," rising above Earth at the dawn of the Space Shuttle Program. Columbia's accomplishments include the launch and deployment of NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory on STS-93, the first shuttle landing at White Sands Space Harbor in New Mexico on STS-3, the first deployment of commercial satellites and the first four-member crew during STS-5, the first Spacelab mission and first six-member crew on STS-9, the first female commander, Eileen Collins, on STS-93, as well as several laboratory missions with international partners. Crew-designed patches for each of Columbia’s missions lead from Earth toward a remembrance of the STS-107 crew, which was lost during re-entry on Feb. 1, 2003.
Five orbiter tributes are on display in the firing room, representing Atlantis, Challenger, Columbia, Endeavour and Discovery. Graphic design credit: NASA/Amy Lombardo