Main Acronyms


AASEM Assembly of Station by EVA Methods
ACCESS Assembly Concept for Construction of Erectable Space Structure
ACS Advanced Camera for Surveys
ACTS Advanced Communications Technology Satellite
AERCam Sprint Autonomous EVA Robotic Camera/Sprint
AFB Air Force Base
AIUS Agroresurs Avtomatizirovannaya Informatsionno-Upravlencheskaya Sistema Agroresurs (Automatic Information Direction System Agroresurs)
Almaz Codename for a Soviet military space station
ALSEP The Apollo Lunar Surface Experiments Package (ALSEP) comprised a set of scientific instruments placed by the astronauts at the landing site of each of the five Apollo missions to land on the Moon (Apollo 12, 14, 15, 16, and 17). The ALSEP was stored in the LM's Scientific Equipment (SEQ) Bay in two separate subpackages. The base of the first subpackage formed the Central Station while the base of the second subpackage was part of the RTG (radioisotope thermoelectric generator). A subpallet was also attached to the second subpackage which usually carried one or two of the experiments and the antenna gimbal assembly.
AMN Akademiya Meditsinskikh Nau = Academy of Medical Sciences
AMOS Air Force Maui Optical System
AMS The Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer, also designated AMS-02, is a particle physics experiment module that is mounted on the International Space Station. It is designed to measure antimatter in cosmic rays and search for evidence of dark matter. This information is needed to understand the formation of the Universe.
AMU The Astronaut Maneuvering Unit (AMU) was designed by the U.S. Air Force. It was a backpack using hydrogen peroxide as the fuel. The total delta-v capability of the AMU was about 250 feet per second (76.2 meters per second).
AN Akademiya Nauk = Academy of Sciences (of the USSR)
AO Gazkom Aktsionernoye Obshchestvo Gazkom = Joint Stock Company Gazkom
APM Atmospheric Particle Monitor
APU An auxiliary power unit (APU) is a device on a vehicle that provides energy for functions other than propulsion. The Space Shuttle APUs provided hydraulic pressure. The Space Shuttle had three redundant APUs, powered by hydrazine fuel. They functioned during a powered ascent, re-entry, and landing. During ascent, the APUs provided hydraulic power for gimballing of Shuttle's engines and control surfaces. During landing, they powered the control surfaces and brakes. Landing could be accomplished with only one APU working.
ASA/T Advanced Suborbital Astronaut Trainee
ASCS Automatic Stabilization and Control System
ASI Agenzia Spaziale Italiana = Italian Space Agency
ASSR Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic
ASTP Apollo Soyuz Test Project
ASTRO ASTRO was a Spacelab observatory consisting of four astronomical telescopes: Hopkins Ultraviolet Telescope (HUT); Wisconsin Ultraviolet Photo-Polarimeter Experiment (WUPPE); Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope (UIT), mounted on the Instrument Pointing System (IPS). The Instrument Pointing System consisted of a three-axis gimbal system mounted on a gimbal support structure connected to a Spacelab pallet at one end and the aft end of the payload at the other, a payload clamping system for support of the mounted experiment during launch and landing, and a control system based on the inertial reference of a three-axis gyro package and operated by a gimbal-mounted microcomputer. The Broad-Band X-Ray Telescope (BBXRT) and its Two-Axis Pointing System (TAPS) rounded out the instrument complement.
AT&T American Telephone & Telegraph Corporation
ATDA The Augmented Target Docking Adapter was a backup vehicle for the GATV. The ATDA was designed to allow docking, but lacked the propulsion capability of the Agena rocket.
ATLAS Atmospheric Laboratory for Applications and Science
ATM Apollo Telescope Mount. The ATM, was a solar observatory attached to Skylab. There were 8 major solar studies instruments on the mount. Combined, they could observe the Sun in light wavelengths from 2 to 7000 Å (angstroms), which corresponds to soft X-ray, ultraviolet, and visible light. The film magazines had to be changed out by the crew during spacewalks.
ATO Abort To Orbit
ATV The Automated Transfer Vehicle or ATV is an expendable, pressurized unmanned resupply spacecraft developed by the European Space Agency (ESA). ATVs are designed to supply the International Space Station (ISS) with propellant, water, air, payloads, and experiments. ATVs can also reboost the station into a higher orbit. Each ATV weighs 20.7 tons at launch and has a cargo capacity of 8 tons. The pressurized volume is 45 m³. With the ATV is docked, the station crew enters the cargo section and removes the payload.
B.S. Bachelor of Science
B.S.E. Bachelor of Science in Engineering
BBC British Broadcasting Corporation
BBXRT Broad Band X-Ray Telescope
CapCom Capsule Communicator, now: Spacecraft Communicator
CANEX Canadian experiments
CBOSS Cellular Biotechnology Operations Support System
CDR Commander
CEO Crew Earth Observations
CERN European Organization for Nuclear Research
CETA Crew Equipment Translation Aid Cart is one of the largest pieces of extravehicular activity (EVA) equipment built for the International Space Station (ISS). The CETAs are launched as integrated parts of the S1 and P1 Truss segments. Crewmembers can propel themselves and accompanying hardware manually along the Mobile Transporter (MT) rails. On orbit, the two CETA carts are located one on each side of the MT for usage flexibility. If required, a cart may be moved to the other side of the MT to complement the other cart. The CETA has attachment points for other EVA hardware such as the ORU Transfer Device (OTD), also known as the Space Crane; Articulating Portable Foot Restraint (APFR); EVA Tool Stowage Device (ETSD); and a host of other small crew and equipment restraining tools. During ISS assembly operations, crewmembers will also use CETA as a work platform to reach 90 percent of the worksites safely.
CFES Continuous Flow Electrophoresis System
CMG A control moment gyroscope (CMG) is an attitude control device generally used in spacecraft attitude control systems. A CMG consists of a spinning rotor and one or more motorized gimbals that tilt the rotor's angular momentum. As the rotor tilts, the changing angular momentum causes a gyroscopic torque that rotates the spacecraft. CMGs differ from reaction wheels. The ISS employs a total of four CMGs as primary actuating devices during normal flight mode operation. The objective of the CMG flight control system is to hold the space station at a fixed attitude relative to the surface of the Earth.
CMP Command Module Pilot
CNES Centre National de Etudes Spatiales = French Space Agency
COLA Collision Avoidance Maneuver
COSTAR Corrective Optics Space Telescope Axial Replacement
CRISTA Cryogenic Infrared Spectrometers and Telescopes for the Atmosphere
CRO Chemical Release Observation
CRS Commercial Resupply Services (CRS) are contracts signed by NASA in 2008 for the delivery of cargo to the International Space Station (ISS) by commercial firms. The cargo transport missions are provided by SpaceX and by Orbital Sciences.
CSA Canadian Space Agency
CSM Command & Service Module. The CSM consisted of two segments: the Command Module, a cabin which housed a crew of three and equipment needed for re-entry and splashdown; and a Service Module that provided propulsion, electrical power and storage for various consumables required during a mission. The Command Module was a truncated cone (frustum) measuring 10 feet 7 inches (3.2 m) tall and having a diameter of 12 feet 10 inches (3.9 m) across the base. The Service Module was an unpressurized cylindrical structure, measuring 24 feet 7 inches (7.5 m) long and 12 feet 10 inches (3.9 m) in diameter.
DAFT The Dust and Aerosol Measurement Feasibility Test
DASA DaimlerChrysler Aersospace Corporation
Dextre Dextre, also known as the Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator (SPDM), is a two armed robot, or telemanipulator, which is part of the Mobile Servicing System on the International Space Station (ISS), and extends the function of this system to replace some activities otherwise requiring spacewalks. Dextre resembles a headless torso fitted with two extremely agile, 3.35 meters (11 ft) arms. The 3.5 meter long body pivots at the "waist". The body has a grapple fixture at one end that can be grasped by the larger Space Station Arm, Canadarm2 so that Dextre can be positioned at the various Orbital Replacement Unit (ORU) worksites around the Space Station. The other end of the body has an end effector virtually identical to that of Canadarm2, so that Dextre can be stored on Space Station grapple fixtures. At the end of Dextre's arms are ORU/Tool Changeout Mechanisms (OTCM). The OTCM has built-in grasping jaws, a retractable socket drive, a monochrome TV camera, lights, and an umbilical connector that can provide power, data, and video to/from a payload.
DIU Data Interface Unit
DLR German Aerospace Center
DMP Docking Module Pilot
DoD Department of Defense
DOSAAF Dobrovolnoye Obshchestvo Sodeistviya Armii, Aviatsii i Flotu = Free Will Society for the Support of the Army, Aviation and Fleet
DSCS Defense Satellite Communications System
D.V.M. Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine
DVO Dalnevostochny Voyenny Okrug = (Far East Military District)
DXS Diffuse X-Ray Spectrometer
EAC European Astronaut Center
EASE Experimental Assembly of Structures in Extravehicular Activity
EASEP Early Apollo Surface Experiments Package. Since there was only one 2 hour 40 minute EVA planned, the crew would not have enough time to deploy a full ALSEP, which usually took one to two hours to deploy.
EDFT EVA Development Flight Tests
EDO The Extended Duration Orbiter (EDO) program was a project by NASA to prepare for long-term microgravity research aboard Space Station. The Extended Duration Orbiter Cryogenic kit (EDO-pallet or CRYO) is a 15-foot-diameter (4.6 m) assembly of equipment which attached vertically to the payload bay rear bulkhead of an orbiter. The EDO tanks stored 368 pounds (167 kg) of liquid hydrogen at -418 degrees Fahrenheit (-250 °C), and 3,124 pounds (1,417 kg) of liquid oxygen at -285 degrees Fahrenheit (-176 °C). Total empty weight of the system was 3,571 pounds (1,620 kg). When filled with cryogens, the system weight was approximately 7,000 pounds (3.2 t).
ELC An ExPRESS logistics carrier (ELC) is an unpressurized attached payload platform for the International Space Station (ISS) that provides mechanical mounting surfaces, electrical power, and command and data handling services for Orbital Replacement Units (ORUs) as well as science experiments on the ISS. (ExPRESS stands for Expedite the Processing of Experiments to the Space Station.)
EO Ekspeditsiya Osnovnaya (Main Expedition)
EOM Earth Observation Mission
EPAS Eksperimentalny Polyot Apollon-Soyuz = Experimental Flight Apollo-Soyuz
EPOS "Spiral" Eksperimentalny Pilotiruyamy Orbitalny Samolyot Spiral = Experimental Piloted Orbital Aircraft Spiral
FPP Floating Potential Probe
ERA Experimental deployable structure
ERA European Robotic Arm (ESA)
ERBS The Earth Radiation Budget Satellite (ERBS) was a NASA scientific research satellite to study the Earths radiation budget and stratospheric aerosol and gases.
ESA European Space Agency
ESPAD External Stowage Platform-2 (ESP-2) Attachment Device (ESPAD) is a two-part mechanism, with one part containing the active ESPAD claw, which provided a temporary structural connection for the ESP-2 when it was first installed. The other half is passive and remained connected to ESP-2.
ESLS Redundant Sequence Launch Sequencer
ESP External Stowage Platforms (ESPs) are key components of the International Space Station (ISS). Each platform is an external pallet that can hold spare parts, also known as Orbital Replacement Units (ORUs), for the space station.
ESTEC European Space Research and Technology Centre in Nordwijk (The Netherlands)
ESTR Engineering / Science Tape Recorder
EURECA The European Retrievable Carrier (EURECA) was an unmanned 4.5 tons satellite with 15 experiments. EURECA was made of high-strength carbon-fiber struts and titanium nodal points joined together to form a framework of cubic elements. It was three-axis stabilized by means of a magnetic torque assembly together with a nitrogen reaction control assembly (RCA).
EuTEF European Technology Exposure Facility
EVA Extra Vehicular Activity
FE Flight engineer
FGB Functional Energy Block
FGS Fine Guidance Sensor
FOC Faint Object Camera
FOOT Foot/Ground Reaction Forces During Spaceflight experiment
FOS Faint Object Spectrograph
GAS Getaway Special was a NASA program that offered interested individuals, or groups, opportunities to fly small experiments aboard the Space Shuttle. The program, which was officially known as the Small, Self-Contained Payloads program, was canceled following the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster on February 01, 2003.
GATV Gemini Agena target vehicle. Each GATV consisted of an Agena-D derivative upper rocket stage and a docking adapter.
GDR German Democratic Republic
GHRS Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph
GKNII Gosudarstvenny Krasnoznamenny Nauchno Issledovatelsky Institut (State Red Banner Scientific Research Institute)
GKNPTs Gosudarstvenny Kosmichesky Nauchno-Proizvodstvenny Tsentr (State Cosmic Research and Production Centre)
GLOMR Global Low-Orbiting Message Relay (GLOMR) was a data relay, communications space craft and was expected to remain in orbit for approximately 1 year. The purpose of the 150-pound, 62-side polyhedron satellite was to demonstrate the ability to read signals and command oceanographic sensors; locate oceanographic and other ground sensors, and relay data from them to customers.
GLV Gemini launch vehicle
GMK Glavnaya Meditsinskaya Komissiya = Main Medical Commission
GMVK Gosudarstvennaya Mezhvedomstvennaya Komissiya = State Interdepartmental Commission
GNTs Gosudarstwenny Nauchny Tsentr = State Scientific Centre
GOGU Glavnaya Operativnaya Gruppa Upravleniya = Main Operative Control Group
GPC General Purpose Computer
GPS The Global Positioning System (GPS) is a space-based satellite navigation system that provides location and time information in all weather conditions, anywhere on or near the Earth where there is an unobstructed line of sight to four or more GPS satellites. A GPS receiver calculates its position by precisely timing the signals sent by GPS satellites high above the Earth. Each satellite continually transmits messages that include the time the message was transmitted and, satellite position at time of message transmission. The receiver uses the messages it receives to determine the transit time of each message and computes the distance to each satellite using the speed of light. Each of these distances and satellites locations defines a sphere. The receiver is on the surface of each of these spheres when the distances and the satellites locations are correct. These distances and satellites locations are used to compute the location of the receiver using the navigation equations. This location is then displayed, perhaps with a moving map display or latitude and longitude; elevation or altitude information may be included.
GRO The Compton Gamma Ray Observatory (CGRO), originally Gamma Ray Observatory (GRO), was a space observatory detecting light from 20 KeV to 30 GeV in Earth orbit from 1991 to 2000. It featured four main telescopes in one spacecraft, covering X-rays and gamma rays, including various specialized sub-instruments and detectors. It was the heaviest astrophysical payload ever flown at that time at 17,000 kilograms (37,000 lb).
HSP High Speed Photometer
HST The Hubble Space Telescope (HST) is a space telescope that was launched into low Earth orbit in 1990 and remains in operation. With a 2.4-meter (7.9 ft) mirror, Hubble's four main instruments observe in the near ultraviolet, visible, and near infrared spectra. Hubble has a length of 13.2 m (43 ft), is 2.4 m (7.9 ft) in diameter and had a mass of 11,110 kg (24,490 lb) at launch.
HST-SM Hubble Space Telescope Servicing Mission
HTV The H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV), also called Kounotori, is an unmanned resupply spacecraft used to resupply the Kibo Japanese Experiment Module (JEM) and the International Space Station (ISS). The HTV is about 9.8 m long (including maneuvering thrusters at one end) and 4.4 m in diameter. Total mass is 10.5 tons, with a 6,000 kilograms (13,000 lb) payload. The baseline configuration uses one pressurized and one unpressurized segment and can carry 7,600 kg of cargo in total and is 9.2 m long. When two pressurized units are used together the cargo decreases slightly to about 7,000 kg, and the overall length is reduced to 7.4 m.
HUT Hopkins Ultraviolet Telescope
IBSS Infrared Background Signature Survey
ICBC IMAX Cargo Bay Camera
ICC The Integrated Cargo Carrier (ICC) is an unpressurized flat bed pallet and keel yoke assembly housed in the payload bay. Constructed of aluminum, it is eight feet long, 15 feet wide and 10 inches thick and has the capability to carry cargo on both faces of the pallet, both atop and below.
IES Institut Elektrosvarki = Institute of Electric Welding
IIET Institut Istorii Estestvoznaniya i Tekhniki = Institute of the History of Natural Sciences and Technology
IKI Institut Kosmicheskikh Issledovany (Space Research Institute)
IMAX IMAX (an abbreviation for Image Maximum) is a motion picture film format and a set of cinema projection standards. IMAX increases the resolution of the image by using a much larger film frame. To achieve this, 65 mm film stock passes horizontally through the camera, 15 perforations at a time resulting in a speed of 102.7 meters per minute. Traditional 65 mm cameras pass film vertically through the camera five perforations at a time resulting in a speed of 34 meters per minute. In comparison, 35 mm film runs vertically through the camera four perforations at a time, resulting in a speed of 27.4 meters per minute.
IMBP Institut Mediko-Biologicheskikh Problem = Institute of Medico-Biological Problems
IML International Microgravity Laboratory
IPS Intrument Pointing System
IRCFE Infrared Communications Flight Experiment
IRT Integrated Rendezvous Target
ISRO Indian Space Research Organisation
ISS The International Space Station (ISS) is a space station, or a habitable artificial satellite, in low Earth orbit. It is a modular structure whose first component was launched in 1998. The ISS consists of pressurized modules, external trusses, solar arrays and other components. The ISS program is a joint project among five participating space agencies: NASA, Roscosmos, JAXA, ESA, and CSA. The ISS maintains an orbit with an altitude of between 330 km (205 mi) and 435 km (270 mi). The ISS has a length of 72.8 m (239 ft) and his height is 20 m (66 ft). The orbital inclination is 51,6 degrees.
ISS-CDR International Space Station Commander
ISSI In Space Soldering Investigation
ITS The Integrated Truss Structure (ITS) forms the backbone of the International Space Station, with mountings for unpressurized logistics carriers, radiators, solar arrays, and other equipment. All truss components were named after their planned end-positions: Z for zenith, S for starboard and P for port, with the number indicating the sequential position. The S0 truss might be considered a misnomer, as it is mounted centrally on the zenith position of Destiny and is neither starboard nor port side.
IUS The Inertial Upper Stage (IUS) was a two-stage solid-fueled rocket upper stage. The IUS was used for raising payloads from low Earth orbit to higher orbits.
IUS/SIGINT U.S. Air Force Inertial Upper Stage
IVA Intra Vehicular Activity
IZMIRAN Institut Zemnovo Magnetizma, Ionosfery i rasprostraneniya Radiovoln Akademii Nauk (Institute for Earth Magnetism, Ionosphere and Radio Propagation of the Academy of Sciences)
JAXA Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency
JEM Japanese Experiment Module
JEM EF Japanese Experiment Module - Exposed Facility
JEM ELM-ES Japanese Experiment Module - Experiment Logistics Module Exposed Section
JEM ELM PS Japanese Experiment Module Experiment Logistics Module Pressurized Section
JEM PM Japanese Experiment Module Pressurized Module
JEM RMS Japanese Experiment Module Remote Manipulator System
JPL Jet Propulsion Laboratory
JSC Johnson Space Center
KB Salyut Konstruktorskoye Byuro Salyut = Design Bureau Salyut, Salyut = Salutation
KBOM Konstruktorskoye Byuro Obshchego Mashinostroyeniya = General Machine Building Design Bureau
KhAI Kharkovsky Aviatsionny Institut (Kharkov Aviation Institute)
KKSZh Kosmicheskaya Komissiya Soyuza Zhournalistov = Space Commission of the Journalist-Union (of the USSR
KRT Kosmichesky Radioteleskop = Space Radio Telescope
KSC Kennedy Space Center
KVVA Krasnoznamennaya Voyenno-Vozdushnaya Akademiya (Red Banner Air Force Academy)
LAGEOS LAGEOS, or Laser Geodynamics Satellites, are a series of scientific research satellites designed to provide an orbiting laser ranging benchmark for geodynamical studies of the Earth. Each satellite is a high density passive laser reflector in a very stable medium Earth orbit (MEO). The spacecraft are aluminum-covered brass spheres with a diameter of 60 cm and masses of 400 and 411 kg, covered with 426 cube-corner retroreflectors, giving them the appearance of giant golf balls. 422 of the retroreflectors are made from fused silica glass, while the remaining 4 are made from germanium to obtain measurements in the infrared for experimental studies of reflectivity and satellite orientation.
LDEF The Long Duration Exposure Facility, or LDEF, was a school bus-sized cylindrical facility designed to provide long-term experimental data on the outer space environment and its effects on space systems, materials, operations and selected spore's survival.
LF Logistics Flight
LGU Leningradsky Gosudarstvenny Universitet = Leningrad State University
LIAP Leningradsky Institut Aviatsionnovo Priborostroyeniya (Leningrad Institute for Aviation Instrument Building)
LII Lyetno-Isslyedovatyelskiy Institut = Flying Research Institute (of MAP)
LITE Lidar In-Space Technology Experiment
LM Lunar Module. The LM, consisting of an ascent stage and descent stage, was ferried to lunar orbit by its companion Command & Service Module (CSM). The Ascent stage contained the crew cabin with instrument panels and flight controls. It contained its own Ascent Propulsion System (APS) engine and two hypergolic propellant tanks for return to lunar orbit and rendezvous with the Apollo Command & Service Module. The Descent stage's primary job was to support a powered landing and surface extravehicular activity. When the excursion was over, it served as the launch pad for the ascent stage. Octagon-shaped, it was supported by four folding landing gear legs, and contained a throttleable Descent Propulsion System (DPS) engine with four hypergolic propellant tanks.
LMC Lightweight Multi-Purpose Experiment Support Structure Carrier
LMI Leningradsky Mekhanichesky Institut = Leningrad Mechanical Institut
LMP Lunar Module Pilot
LRV The Lunar Roving Vehicle (LRV) or lunar rover was a battery-powered four-wheeled rover used on the Moon in the last three Apollo missions. The Lunar Roving Vehicle had a mass of 463 lb (210 kg), which resulted in a lunar weight of 77.2 lbf (35.0 kgf) - and was designed to hold a payload of 1,080 lb (490 kg) on the lunar surface. The frame was 10 ft (3.0 m) long with a wheelbase of 7.5 ft (2.3 m). The height of the vehicle was 3.6 feet (1.1 m). The frame was made of aluminum alloy 2219 tubing welded assemblies and consisted of a three-part chassis that was hinged in the center so it could be folded up and hung in the Lunar Module Quadrant 1 bay. The wheels consisted of a spun aluminum hub and a 32 inches (81 cm) diameter, 9 inches (23 cm) wide tire made of zinc-coated woven 0.033 inches (0.84 mm) diameter steel strands attached to the rim and discs of formed aluminum. Power was provided by two 36-volt silver-zinc potassium hydroxide non-rechargeable batteries with a capacity of 121 A·h each (a total of 242 A·h), translating into a range of 57 miles (92 km).
LS Laboratory Specialist
M.A.S. Master of Advanced Studies
M.B.A. Master of Business Administration degree
M.D. Doctorate of Medicine
M.S. Master of Science
MACE Middeck Active Control Experiment
MAI Moskovsky Aviatsionny Institut (Moscow Aviation Institute)
MAP Ministerstvo Aviatsionnoi Promuishlyennosti = Ministry of Aviation Industries
MBS The Mobile Base System (MBS) is a base platform for the robotic arm. The MBS is equipped with 4 Power Data Grapple Fixtures, one at each of its four top corners. Either of these can be used as a base for the two robots, Canadarm2 and Dextre, as well as any of the payloads that might be held by the robots.
MEEP MIR Environmental Effects Payload
MET Modular Equipment Transporter
MFMG Miscible Fluids in Microgravity
MFTI Moskovsky Fisiko-Tekhnichesky Institut (Moscow Physical-Technology Institute)
MGA Ministerstvo Grazhdanskoy Aviatsii = Ministry of Civilian Aviation
MGPU Moskovsky Gorodskoy Pedagogichesky Universitet (Moscow City Pedagogical University)
MGTU Moskovsky Gosudarstvenny Tekhnichesky Universitet (Moscow State Technological University)
MGU Moskovsky Gosudarstvenny Universitet = Moscow State University
MISSE The Materials International Space Station Experiment (MISSE) is a series of experiments mounted externally on the International Space Station (ISS) that investigates the effects of long-term exposure of materials to the harsh space environment. MISSE is a direct successor of the MIR Environmental Effects Payloads (MEEP) that were attached for over a year to the MIR Docking Module of the space station MIR.
MIT Massuachusetts Institute of Technology
MKF Mnogozonalny Fotoapparat = Multi Channel Camera, Multi Spectral Camera
MKS Mezhdunarodnaya Kosmicheskaya Stantsiya = International Space Station
MLR Monodisperse Latex Reactor
MMU The Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU) is an astronaut propulsion unit that was used by NASA on three Space Shuttle missions in 1984. The MMU allowed the astronauts to perform untethered EVA spacewalks at a distance from the shuttle. Gaseous nitrogen was used as the propellant for the MMU. Two aluminum tanks with Kevlar wrappings contained 5.9 kilograms of nitrogen each, enough propellant for a six-hour EVA depending on the amount of maneuvering done. Typical MMU delta-v (velocity change) capability was about 80 feet per second (25 m/s). To operate the propulsion system, the astronaut used his fingertips to manipulate hand controllers at the ends of the MMU's two arms.
MOL Manned Orbiting Laboratory
MPEC Multi-Purpose Release Canister
MPLM A Multi-Purpose Logistics Module (MPLM) was a large pressurized container used on Space Shuttle missions to transfer cargo to and from the International Space Station (ISS). A MPLM was carried in the cargo bay of a Shuttle and initially berthed to the Unity module but later the Harmony module on the ISS. From there, supplies were offloaded, and finished experiments and waste were reloaded. The MPLM was then reberthed in the Shuttle for return to Earth. Three modules were built by the Italian Space Agency (ASI), Leonardo, Raffaello and Donatello.
MRM Rassvet (dawn), also known as the Mini-Research Module 1 (MRM-1) and formerly known as the Docking Cargo Module (DCM), is a component of the International Space Station (ISS). Rassvet has two docking units: one to attach to the nadir port of the Zarya module, and one to provide a docking port for a Soyuz or Progress spacecraft.
MSCA Mir Cooperative Solar Array
MSE Manned Spaceflight Engineer
MSFC Manned Spaceflight Center
MSG Microgravity Science Glovebox
MSL Microgravity Science Lab
MSS The Mobile Servicing System (MSS) is a robotic system and associated equipment on the International Space Station (ISS). It moves equipment and supplies around the station, supports astronauts working in space, and services instruments and other payloads attached to the ISS. The MSS is composed of the actual arm called Canadarm2 or SSRMS, the Mobile Remote Servicer Base System (MBS) and the Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator (SPDM).
MT The Mobile Transporter (MT) is an 885 kilograms (1,950 lb) (1,950 lb) assembly that glides down rails on the station integrated trusses. The transporter measures 108 inches long, 103 inches wide and 38 inches high. It glides 108 meters down rails on the ITS.
MVTU Moskovskoye Vyssheye Tekhnicheskoye Uchilishche (Moscow Higher Technological School)
MSP Mission Specialist
NASA National Aeronautics and Space Administration
NASDA National Space Development Agency of Japan
NAVSPACECOM Naval Space Command
NICMOS Near Infrared Camera and Multi-Object Spectrometer
NIIAP Nauchno Issledovatelsky Institut Avtomatiki i Priborostroyeniya = Scientific Research Institute of Automatics and Instrument Building
NORAD North American Aerospace Defense Command
NPO Nauchno Proizvodstvennoye Obedineniye (Scientific Production Association)
NPO Energiya Nauchno Proizvodstvennoye Obedineniye Energiya (Scientific Production Association Energiya, Energiya = Energy)
NPO Kriogenmash Nauchno Proizvodstvennoye Obedineniye Kriogenmash (Scientific Production Association Kriogenmash)
NPO Mash Nauchno Proizvodstvennoye Obedineniye Mashinostroyeniya (Scientific Production Association Mashinostroyeniya, Mashinostroyeniya = Machine Building)
NPO Molnya Nauchno Proizvodstvennoye Obedineniye Molniya (Scientific Production Association Molniya, Molniya = Flash)
NPO VISP Nauchno Proizvodstvennoye Obedineniye Vsyosoyuznogo Proyektno-Konstruktorskogo Institut Svarochnogo Proizvodstva = Scientific Production Association named All-Union-States Project and Design Institute for Welding Production
NPOE Nauchno Proizvodstvennoye Obedineniye Energiya = Scientific Production Association Energiya (since 1974 the designation of the former TsKBEM
NTA Nitrogen Tank Assembly
OAMS orbit attitude and maneuver system
OAST Office of Aeronautics and Space Technology
OAST-Flyer Office of Aeronautics and Space Technology-Flyer
OBSS The Orbiter Boom Sensor System (OBSS) was a 50-foot boom carried on board NASAs Space Shuttles. The boom was grappled by the Canadarm and served as an extension of the arm, doubling its length to a combined total of 100 feet (30 m). At the far end of the boom was an instrumentation package of cameras and lasers used to scan the leading edges of the wings, the nose cap, and the crew compartment after each lift-off and before each landing.
OKB Opytno-Konstruktorskoye Byuro (Special Design Bureau)
OKP Obshchekosmicheskaya Podgotovka = General Space Training
OKPKI Otraslevoy Kompleks Podgotovki Kosmonavtov-Ispytateley (Branch Complex of Test-Cosmonauts Prepearing)
OMS The Space Shuttle Orbital Maneuvering System (OMS) is a system of hypergolic liquid-propellant rocket engines used on the Space Shuttle. The OMS consists of two pods mounted on the Orbiters aft fuselage, on either side of the vertical stabilizer. Each pod contains a single AJ10-190 engine, based on the Apollo Service Module's Service Propulsion System engine, which produces 26.7 kilonewtons (6,000 lbf) of thrust with a specific impulse (Isp) of 316 seconds. Each engine could be reused for 100 missions and was capable of a total of 1,000 starts and 15 hours of burn time.
ORFEUS Orbiting and Retrievable Far and Extreme Ultraviolet Spectrometer
ORU Orbital Replacement Units (ORUs) are key elements of the International Space Station that can be readily replaced when the unit either passes its design life or fails. Examples of ORUs are: pumps, storage tanks, controller boxes, antennas, and battery units. All are stored on the three External Stowage Platforms (ESPs) or the four ExPRESS Logistics Carriers (ELCs) mounted on the Integrated Truss Structure (ITS).
OSS Office of Space Science
OSTA Office of Space and Terrestical Applications
OSTS Office of Space Transportation Systems
OTD ORU Transfer Device
PAM The Payload Assist Module (PAM) is a modular upper stage. The PAM was used with the Space Shuttle, Delta, and Titan launchers and carried satellites from low Earth orbit to a geostationary transfer orbit or an interplanetary course. The payload was spin stabilized by being mounted on a rotating plate.
PAMS Passive Aerodynamically Stabilized Magnetically-Damped Satellite
PAO Priborno-agregatniy otsek = Instrument and aggregate module
PCG Protein Crystal Growth
PCU Power Control Unit
PDP Plasma Diagnostics Package
PDP Parashyutno-Desantnaya Podgotovka = Parachute Landing Training
Ph.D. Doctorate of Philosphy degree
PLA Peoples Liberation Army - the China military force
PLAAF Peoples Liberation Army Air Force
PLT Pilot
PMA Pressurized Mating Adapters: The International Space Station (ISS) uses three PMAs to interconnect spacecraft and modules with different docking mechanisms. The first two PMAs were launched with the Unity module in 1998 aboard STS-88. The third was launched in 2000 aboard STS-92. All the PMAs on the ISS are identical but used slightly differently, and all three perform the same basic function of connecting a common berthing mechanism (CBM) port of an ISS module to the Androgynous Peripheral Attach System (APAS) docking port of another module or visiting spacecraft. For this the PMAs carry a passive CBM port and a passive APAS port. They are pressurized and heated from the inside and through docking rings as well as external connections allow for power and data communications transfer.
PSP Payload Specialist
PVO Protivovozdushnaya Oborona = Anti Air Defense, Air Defense Force
RAN Rossiyskaya Akademiya Nauk = Russian Academy of Sciences
RCA Radio Corporation of America
RCS A reaction control system (RCS) is a spacecraft system which uses thrusters to provide attitude control, and sometimes translation. An RCS is capable of providing small amounts of thrust in any desired direction or combination of directions. An RCS is also capable of providing torque to allow control of rotation (roll, pitch, and yaw).
REBA Rechargeable EVA Battery Assembly
REP Radar Evaluation Pod
RGNII Rossysky Gosudarstwenny Nauchno Issledovatelsky Institut (Russian State Scientific Research Institute)
RKKE Raketno-Kosmicheskaya Korporatsiya Energiya (Rocket and Spacecraft Corporation Energiya, Energiya = Energy)
RMS Remote Manipulator System. The RMS was also known as Canadarm (Canadarm 1). The Canadarm was 15.2 m (50 ft) long, and 38 cm (15 in) diameter with six degrees of freedom. It weighed 410 kg (900 lb) by itself, and 450 kg (990 lb) as part of the total system. The Canadarm had six joints that corresponded roughly to the joints of the human arm, with shoulder yaw and pitch joints; an elbow pitch joint; and wrist pitch, yaw, and roll joints. The end effector was the unit at the end of the wrist that grappled the payload's grapple fixture. The two lightweight boom segments were called the upper and lower arms. The upper boom connected the shoulder and elbow joints, and the lower boom connected the elbow and wrist joints. One crew member operated the Canadarm from the aft flight deck control station.
RSC Energiya Rocket and Spacecraft Corporation Energiya
RSU Remote Sensing Units
RTLS Return to Launch Site
RVSN Raketnye Voiska Strategicheskogo Naznacheniya = Rocket Troops for Strategic Purpose, Strategic Rocket Force
RWA Reaction Wheel Assembly
SADE Solar Array Drive Electronics
SAFER Simplified Aid for EVA Rescue. SAFER is a small, self-contained, propulsive backpack device that can provide free-flying mobility for a spacewalker in an emergency. It is designed for self-rescue use by a spacewalker in the event the Shuttle is unable or unavailable to retrieve a detached, drifting crew member. It is attached to the spacesuit's Portable Life Support System backpack and is designed for emergency use only. The propulsion is provided by 24 fixed-position thrusters that expel nitrogen gas and have a thrust of .8 lbs. and the three-pound supply of nitrogen can provide a ten-foot-per-second change in velocity.
SAREX The Shuttle Amateur Radio Experiment (SAREX), later called the Space Amateur Radio Experiment, was a program that promoted and supported the use of amateur (ham) radio by astronauts in low earth orbit aboard the United States Space Shuttle to communicate with other amateur radio stations around the world. An amateur operator license is needed before operating an amateur station.
SARJ The Solar Alpha Rotary Joints (SARJ) contain Drive Lock Assemblies which allow the outer segments of the ITS to rotate and track the Sun. Each SARJ is 10 feet in diameter, weighs approximately 2,500 pounds and can be rotated continuously using bearing assemblies and a servo control system.
Sc.D. Doctorate of Science
SBS Satellite Business Systems
SDI Strategic Defense Initiative
SEEDS Space Exposed Experiment Developed for Students
SEVA Standup-EVA
SFINCSS Simulation of Flight of International Crew on Space Station
SFSR Soviet Federated Socialist Republic
SFU The Space Flyer Unit (SFU) was launched from Tanegashima Space Center from a H-II vehicle. It was carrying testing materials and research data that held value to NASA. The SFU had a launch mass of 3,846 kilograms (8,479 lb). They retrieved the data from the Space Flyer Unit by Space Shuttle Endeavour on January 20, 1996 (which was 10 months after the Space Flyer Unit was launched. The idea behind the implementation of the SFU was a joint effort by multiple major corporations.
SH-DM SPACEHAB Double-Module
SH-LSM SPACEHAB Logistics Single Module
SLP Spacelab Pallet
SLS Spacelab Life Science
SMD Shuttle Mission Development Test
SMDP Service Module Debris Protection
SMM Solar Maximum Mission
SPARTAN Shuttle Pointed Autonomous Research Tool for Astronomy. SPARTAN was designed to carry a variety of experiments. SPARTAN was a rectangular structure, 126 by 42 by 48 in.; weight 2,223 lb. including 300 lb. of experiments. It was deployed and retrieved using the Canadian-built robot arm.
SPAS Space Pallet Satellite
SPD Spool Positioning Devices
SPK Ikar Sredstvo Peredvizheniya Kosmonavta Ikar = Cosmonaut Transportation Unit Ikar, Ikar = Ikarus
SRB The Space Shuttle Solid Rocket Boosters (SRBs) were the pair of large solid rockets used by the United States NASA Space Shuttle during the first two minutes of its powered flight. Together, they provided about 83% of liftoff thrust for the Space Shuttle. They were the white booster engines located on each side of the orange-colored external propellant tank. Each SRB produced 80% more liftoff thrust than one F-1 engine, the most powerful single-chamber liquid-fueled rocket engine ever flown. Each SRB weighs approximately 1,300,000 lb (590,000 kg) at launch. Each SRB had a height of 149.16 feet (45.46 m) and was 12.17 feet (3.71 m) in diameter.
SRL Space Radar Laboratory
SRMS Shuttle Remote Manipulator System. The original RMS was also known as Canadarm (Canadarm 1) and was later renamed to SRMS. The Canadarm was 15.2 m (50 ft) long, and 38 cm (15 in) diameter with six degrees of freedom. It weighed 410 kg (900 lb) by itself, and 450 kg (990 lb) as part of the total system. The Canadarm had six joints that corresponded roughly to the joints of the human arm, with shoulder yaw and pitch joints; an elbow pitch joint; and wrist pitch, yaw, and roll joints. The end effector was the unit at the end of the wrist that grappled the payload's grapple fixture. The two lightweight boom segments were called the upper and lower arms. The upper boom connected the shoulder and elbow joints, and the lower boom connected the elbow and wrist joints. One crew member operated the Canadarm from the aft flight deck control station.
SRTM Shuttle Radar Topography Mission
SS Spaceplane Specialist
SSPTS Station-to-Shuttle Power Transfer System
SSR Solid State Recorder
SSR Soviet Socialist Republic
SSRMS The Space Station Remote Manipulator System is also known as Canadarm2. The system is 17.6 m (58 ft) when fully extended and has seven motorized joints. It has a mass of 1,800 kg (4,000 lb) and a diameter of 35 cm (14 in). The arm is capable of handling large payloads of up to 116,000 kg (256,000 lb) and was able to assist with docking the space shuttle. In this movement, it is limited only by the number of Power Data Grapple Fixtures (PDGFs) on the station. PDGFs located around the station provide power, data and video to the arm through its Latching End Effectors (LEEs). The arm can also travel the entire length of the space station truss using the Mobile Base System.
STIS Space Telescope Imaging Spectograph
STS Space Transportation System
STU Satellite Test Unit
SWIUS Southwest Ultraviolet Imaging System
TAL Transatlantic Landing
TANG National Guard of Texas
TBS Tokyo Broadcasting System
TDRS Tracking and Data Relay Satellite
TKS Transportny Korabl Snabzheniya (Transport-Supply Ship)
TsKBEM Tsentralnoye Konstruktorskoye Byuro Eksperimentalnogo Mashinostroyeniya (Central Design Bureau of Experimental Machine Building)
TsKBM Tsentralnoye Konstruktorskoye Byuro Mashinostroyeniya (Central Design Bureau of Machine Building)
TsKBMF Tsentralnoye Konstruktorskoye Byuro Mashinostroyeniya - Fili = Central Design Bureau of Machine Building - Fili Branch
TsPAT Tsentr Pokaza Aviatsionnoi Tekhniki = Show Centre of Aviation Technology
TsPK Tsentr Podgotovki Kosmonavtov (Cosmonaut Training Center)
TSS The reusable Tethered Satellite System (TSS) was made up of a satellite attached to the Shuttle orbiter by a super strong cord which should be reeled into space from the Shuttle's cargo bay. The tether - which looked like a 12-mile-long white bootlace - was scheduled to have electrically-conducting metal strands in its core. The conducting tether should generate electrical currents at a high voltage by the same basic principle as a standard electrical generator - by converting mechanical energy. The Tethered Satellite System had five major components: the deployer system, the tether, the satellite, the carriers on which the system was mounted and the science instruments.
TsSKB Tsentralnoye Spetsializirovannoye Konstruktorskoye Byuro Foton = Central Special Design Bureau Foton, Foton = Photon
TsUP Tsentr Upravleniya Polyotam (Flight Control Center)
TsVNIAG Tsentralny Voyenny Nauchno Issledovatelsky Aviatsionny Gospital = Central Military Scientific Research Aviation Hospital
TTM Tip-Tilt Mirror Telescope
UARS The Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS) was a NASA-operated orbital observatory whose mission was to study the Earths atmosphere, particularly the protective ozone layer. The 5,900-kilogram (13,000 lb) satellite was deployed from the Space Shuttle.
UCLA University of California-Los Angeles
UF Utilization Flight
UIT Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope
ULF Utilization and Logistics Flight
URI Universalnui Rabotschi Instrument (Universal Working Tool)
USAF United States Air Force
USCG United States Coast Guard
USMC United States Marine Corps
USML United States Microgravity Laboratory
USMP U.S. Microgravity Payload
USN United States Navy
USNR United States Navy Reserve
USS United States Ship
UTC Coordinated Universal Time = GMT = Greenwich Mean Time
VAB Vehicle Assembly Building
VDU Vynosnaya Dvigatyelnaya Ustanovka = Outer Engine Unit
VfW Vereinigte Flugtechnische Werke
VIA Voyenno-Inzhenernaya Akademiya (Military Engineering Academy)
VIAVU Vyssheye Inzhenernoye Aviatsionnoye Voyennoye Uchilishche (Higher Military Aviation School for Engineers)
VKIU Vyssheye Komandno-Inzhenernoye Uchilishche (Higher Military School for Command-Engineers)
VKS Voyenno Kosmicheskiye Sily = Military Space Force
VMA Voyenno Morskaya Aviatsiya = Military Marine Aviation, Navy Air Force
VMF Voyenno Morskoy Flot = Military Marine Force, Navy   
VNTsKh Vsyosoyuznogo Nauchnogo Tsentr Khirurgi = All-Union-States Scientific Centre of Surgery
VTA Voyenno Transportnaya Aviatsiya = Military Transport Aviation, Air Transport Force
VVA Voyenno Vozdushnaya Akademiya = Air Force Academy
VVAUL Vyssheye Voyennoye Aviatsionnoye Uchilishche Lyochikov (Higher Military Aviation School for Pilots)
VVIA Voyenno Vozdushnaya Inzhenernaya Akademiya = Air Force Engineering Academy
VVS Voyenno Vozdushniye Sily (Military Air Force)
WFPC Wide Field Planetary Camera
WSF The Wake Shield Facility is an experimental science platform. It was a 3.7 meter (12 ft) diameter, free-flying stainless steel disk. The WSF was deployed in the wake of the Space Shuttle at an orbital altitude of over 300 kilometers (186 mi), within the thermosphere, where the atmosphere is exceedingly tenuous. The forward edge of the WSF disk redirected atmospheric and other particles around the sides, leaving an ultra-vacuum in its wake. The resulting vacuum was used to study epitaxial film growth. These included gallium arsenide (GaAs) and aluminum gallium arsenide (AlGaAs) depositions.
WUPPE Wisconsin Ultraviolet Photo-Polarimeter Experiment


Military Ranks

Brig.Gen. Brigadier General
Capt. Captain
Col. Colonel
Jr. Lt. Junior Lieutenant
Lt. Lieutenant
Lt. 1 Lieutenant 1. Class
Lt. Cdr. Lieutenant Commander
Lt. Col. Lieutenant Colonel
Maj. Major
Maj.Gen. Major General
Sgt. Sergeant
WO1 Warrant Officer First Class
CW2 Chief Warrant Officer Second Class
CW3 Chief Warrant Officer Third Class
CW4 Chief Warrant Officer Fourth Class


Russian Military Ranks

Brig.Gen. Brigadier General
Capt. Kapitan = Captain
Cdr. Kapitan vtorogo (2.) ranga = Commander
Col. Polkovnik = Colonel
Jr.Lt. Mladshi Leitenant = Junior Lieutenant
Jr.Lt. Starshi Leitenant = Lieutenant Junior Grade
Lt.1 Starshi Leitenant = First Lieutenant
Lt.2  Leitenant = Second Lieutenant
Lt.Cdr. Kapitan tretyego (3.) ranga = Lieutenant Commander
Lt.Col. Podpolkovnik = Lieutenant Colonel
Lt.Gen. General Leitenant = Lieutenant General
Maj. Maior = Major
Maj.Gen. General Maior = Major General
Sgt. Mladshi Serzhant = Sergeant
Sgt.1 (Starshina) = Sergeant First Class


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Last update on December 16, 2014