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Mission STS-90

Dave Williams

Mission description

Patch STS-90
Text version

The STS-90 mission, known as Neurolab, sees Space Shuttle Columbia transformed into an orbiting laboratory for neurosciences. The electroencephalogram (EEG) waves emanating from the Shuttle represent the experiments conducted during the mission. There are four waves: one for each of the payload crew members who carried out the experiments. The constellation Ophiucus (""The Serpent Bearer""), associated with Asclepius, the Greek god of medicine, appears in the upper right side of the patch.

The caduceus' wings on the left, commonly associated with medicine, have been modified to aviation ""flight wings"", symbolizing Dave Williams' combined experience as medical doctor, neurophysiologist and Mission Specialist.

The nine stars in the constellation represent the nine crew members who have trained for STS-90. A graphic illustration of a neuron stretches over the Earth below, representing the application of Neurolab's research to terrestrial neurosciences.

Patch STS-90. (Credit: Canadian Space Agency)


Date: April 17, 1998

Time: 2:19:00 p.m. EST

Site: Kennedy Space Center (KSC)


Date: May 3, 1998

Time: 12:08:59 p.m. EST

Site: Kennedy Space Center (KSC)

Mission duration: 15 days 21 h 50 min 58 s

Flight number: STS-090

Orbiter vehicle: Columbia

Payloads: Neurolab, GAS.

The STS-90 mission launch was held on April 17, 1998 on board Space Shuttle Columbia at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Canadian Space Agency (CSA) astronaut Dr. Dafydd Rhys (Dave) Williams served as a Mission Specialist.

STS-90 was called Neurolab, one of a series of NASA's research missions dedicated to the study of life sciences. Neurolab's research was focused primarily on the effects of weightlessness on the neurosystem. Of the 26 experiments performed, two were Canadian: the Visuo-Motor Coordination During Space Flight experiment and the Role of Visual Cues in Spatial Orientation.

Dr. Williams, in addition to performing experiments in space, was the first astronaut from outside the United States to be named official Crew Medical Officer, and the third Canadian Mission Specialist to have flown on a space shuttle mission.

CSA astronaut Chris Hadfield was CAPCOM during STS-90.

Mission STS-90 crew

Mission STS-90 crew

From left to right. James A. (Jim) Pawelczyk, Richard M. Linnehan, Scott D. Altman, Kathryn P. (Kay) Hire, Richard A. Searfoss, Dafydd (Dave) Rhys Williams and Jay Clark Buckey. (Credit: NASA)

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