Space Shuttle

The US Space Shuttle or Space Transportation System (STS) has been making orbital flights since April 1981. The orbit is generally circular with altitude (differing by mission) anywhere from 200 km to over 600 km. The orbital plane is typically inclined (tilted) at 28.5 degrees, 39 degrees, 51.6 degrees, or 57 degrees depending on the mission.

Shuttle Mission Information

Orbital Data




Discovery (OV-103)


Return to Filght / ISS Flight LF1

Inclination / Alt:

51.6-deg / 226-km


2005-JUL-26 1439:00.090 UTC



Catalog Number


Int Designator



On Orbit

STS-114 On-line Press Kit

Shuttle Liftoff
Shuttle On Orbit

You can get video, photos, and other information from the Kennedy Space Center Web page. Shuttle Press Kits are also available on-line for viewing or downloading.

Other Excellent sources of Space Shuttle information include the NASA Human Space Flight Web page and the NASA Spacelink Web page. Frequent orbital updates are available on the AMSAT Shuttle Orbital Data Web page. This same data is available by E-mail subscription to the NASA Spacelink STSTLE mailing list. You may subscribe to this list by sending the following text: subscribe STSTLE your First and Last Name to the STSTLE Mailing List manager. Likewise, sending an "Unsubscribe" message to the STSTLE Mailing List manager will stop further messages from being sent to your E-mail address by this list. Accurate Space Shuttle orbital information (including Keplerian elements) or other pertinent information is available in a current STSTLE message.

Mission monitoring by NASA TV is enjoyed by many. NASA TV is available by direct downlink by satellite and is provided by some cable TV providers. The audio portion is retransmitted locally by amateur radio operators and is available for monitoring by VHF/UHF scanner radios or other amateur radio equipment. The AMSAT Shuttle Retransmission list provides a current list of local NASA TV audio retransmission frequencies. The NASA Goddard Amateur Radio Club (GARC) also provides High Frequency (HF) Retransmissions of Shuttle audio. The tables below list Amplitude Modulation (AM) VHF and UHF frequencies used for spacecraft mission operations.


Transmit Frequency (MHz)

Receive Frequency (MHz)





Shuttle / Mir1/2 Duplex




Shuttle / Mir / Soyuz Simplex




Shuttle / Soyuz / Joint EVA 1/2 Duplex

Frequency (MHz)



Standard UHF Emergency Frequency


Launch / Landing and 3-way EVA Duplex Ops


EVA 3-way Duplex between Suit 1, Suit 2, and the Orbiter


Launch / Landing and EVA 3-way Duplex Ops

Some Space Shuttle missions carry 2 meter Frequency Modulation (FM) Amateur Radio Equipment for the Space Amateur Radio EXperiment (SAREX). The SAREX frequencies vary depending on whether or not the Shuttle will be docking with the Mir Space Station. The voice frequencies used for current SAREX missions are 145.800 MHz for the downlink and either 144.450 MHz or 144.470 MHz for the uplink for non-European stations. European stations should use 145.800 MHz for the downlink and 144.490 MHz for the uplink.


Click on the "Orbital Data" link for current Keplerian elements and State Vectors

Click on the "Status" link for the latest Mission Control Status message

Between missions, link information may pertain to the previous mission

Try the different NASA links for more details

The STSTLE list typically provides four (4) Email orbital updates per day during active Shuttle missions

Current STSTLE messages are posted under the "Orbital Data" link in the table above

VEC2TLE can read the STSTLE messages and update text - based Keplerian element files