The USAF and NASA successfully conducted infrared spectral measurements of the Space Shuttle glow during STS-39. Preliminary analysis indicates that NO, NO(+), OH, and CO produce infrared glow during quiescent orbiter conditions. During orbiter thruster firings the glow intensities in the infrared are enhanced by factors of 10X and 100X with significant changes in spectral distribution. These measurements were obtained with the Spacecraft Kinetic Infrared Test payload which included a cryogenic infrared circular variable filter infrared spectrometer covering the 0.7 to 5.4 microns wavelength region. Approximately 14,000 spectra of Shuttle glow, airglow, aurora, and the orbiter environment were obtained during the eight day mission. The STS-39 Space Shuttle Discovery was launched from the NASA Kennedy Space Center on 28 April, 1991 into a 57-deg inclination circular orbit at an altitude of 260 km.
SPACECRAFT DESIGN, TESTING AND PERFORMANCE
Geophysical Research Letters (ISSN 0094-8276); 19; 10, M