One Last Look from Skylab 2 - Nasa daily picture for June 22 (2023)

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This week in 1973, the first crewed Skylab mission launched aboard a Saturn IB from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center.

During the Skylab 2 crew's final fly-around inspection on June 22, 1973, they saw this overhead view of the Skylab space station. It has a single solar panel and a parasol solar shield, rigged to replace the micrometeoroid shield. A mishap in the original Skylab 1 liftoff and orbital insertion resulted in damage: both the second solar panel and the micrometeoroid shield were torn away.

When commander Charles “Pete” Conrad, pilot Paul J. Weitz, and science pilot Joseph P. Kerwin launched to the Skylab space station, the first part of their mission was to make repairs to the station, resulting in a record-breaking spacewalk. In the second half of their mission, Conrad, Weitz, and Kerwin focused on completing as much science as possible, research being the primary goal of Skylab.

On June 22, after undocking from Skylab and photographing it during a fly-around inspection, they fired the service module’s engine to bring them home, after completing 404 orbits around the Earth. They splashed down about 800 miles southwest of San Diego and 6.5 miles from the prime recovery ship, the aircraft carrier USS Ticonderoga.

Learn more about Skylab.

Image credit: NASA



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