Space Shuttle for iPhone

Let’s face it. The chance of you going to space and piloting the Space Shuttle is almost nil, unless you are an air force pilot who’s lucky enough to be included in the space programme. Even our every own part-time model angkasawan (spaceman) didn’t have the chance to fly it. He only managed to make some teh tarik and play congkak while in space.

So this is the next best thing: Space Shuttle from Laminar Research, the same guys who brought you X-Plane 9.

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There’s obviously only one space shuttle to choose from.

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Several missions to choose from on the mission page.

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6 seconds till lift off…

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And we have ignition!

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With 2 solid rocket boosters and three rocket engines on the shuttle in total generating over 6 million pounds of thrust (a 737 engine generates about 22,000pounds), it takes about 8 minutes to reach space at Mach 23, or 27,650km/h.

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After the solid rocket boosters have been jettisoned off, the shuttle runs on the fuel from the main tank until it finally separates from the shuttle when it is empty.

In this game there’s hardly anything to do during launch and in space. The launch is totally automated. Docking with the ISS however is a nightmare. I still can’t do it.

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Docking with the ISS.

The fun part is the reentry. Traveling at such high speeds, you need to make sure you can slow down enough to come in for the landing at the runway.

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Preparing for re-entry.

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Mainly I rely on the PFDs for the re-entry.

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Approacing Edwards Airforce Base.

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Flying in with the HUD.

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And flaring for landing. I crashed this flight by the way.

This app sure does give you the feel of piloting a Space Shuttle and going into space. Not something you’ll get to do on your normal flight simulators. Space Shuttle is available at the iTunes store. Continue reading