Columbia takes up arm

ColumbiaKey to NASA’s claim that the Space Shuttle will be able to deploy, retrieve and repair satellites is the Canadian-built remote manipulator arm system (or “Canadarm”), a project first contracted in 1975 and making its first appearance on Columbia‘s second flight. During tests, the arm performs exactly as expected, and proves to be absolutely vital to many future shuttle missions. The Canadian Space Agency and its subcontractors quickly receive further orders – a Canadarm for every shuttle in the fleet. Fuel cell problems shorten Columbia’s mission from five days to two days, but the crew still accomplishes most of the planned objectives and experiments.