Discovery beginning the historic "Return to Flight" mission, July 2005
|Base Hull||Rockwell International Space Shuttle Orbiter|
|Drive Type||impulse engine x3|
|Drive Rating||Max velocity 0.05c|
|Flag of Record||United States of America|
|Launched||As hardtech spacecraft: 30 August 1984|
As wavetech spacecraft: 17 November 2013
|Primary Crew||Varies according to rotation schedule|
|Other Crew||Discovery (AI)|
Discovery is one of the Three Graces, the three surviving NASA Space Shuttle Orbiters.
Discovery was first launched as a hardtech spacecraft in 1984. The ship performed admirably through the initial phase of the Shuttle program, setting many records (including the most flights by a hardtech spacecraft, the most people carried by a hardtech spacecraft, the first spacecraft to retrieve a satellite and bring it back to Earth, and the first spacecraft to be piloted by a female). Upon completion of the International Space Station in 2010, Discovery was retired along with sister ships Atlantis and Endeavour.
When the NASA/Fenspace conspiracy known as Project Artemis began, Discovery was pulled out of storage and handwaved by a team of engineering experts. The shuttle returned to flight on 17 November 2013 with a brief circumlunar test flight. After Project Artemis was exposed, Discovery was sold along with all the remaining project hardware for pennies on the dollar to the Stellvia Corporation, which uses it as the flagship of the Artemis Foundation.
Known Vehicle Quirks
As the three NASA orbiters were handwaved simultaneously and with the same batch of handwavium, the three ships share a series of quirks.
- Good Morning Starshine: When in space, each Shuttle has to have a different song played to it at the beginning of each working day. If it doesn't get its wake-up call from home, it's sluggish for the entire morning, with maneuverability and top speed reduced by 5% (cumulative per day the wake-up music is missed, to a maximum of 75% reductions in maneuverability and top speed). The song has to be different each day.
- I Am My Ride: The Graces all have fairly well developed AI, but they have all taken the names of the orbiters they inhabit. Atlantis and Discovery use 29 year old Mediterranean female avatars, while Endeavour has chosen to represent herself as a 21 year old indigenous Australian woman.
- Tough Old Bird: The specifications for the Graces are well-founded in reality. However, any of the three can exceed these specifications to approximately 10% overage, or further with severe risks of damage to the system in question (or chassis).
- Falling Free: When the Orbiter is powered up, the crew cabin and main cargo bay are zero-g areas, even when Discovery is on the ground.
- This! Is! (please don't make me finish this): Discovery is a huge fan of sword-and-sandal epics, the cheesier the better. While a showing of one S&S movie a week doesn't improve performance, not doing it leads to a sulky AI and "spontaneous," "random" malfunctions in various systems.
- Worst. Nickname. Ever.: Only Discovery's closest friends get to call her "Dizzy"... but anyone who is allowed to use that nickname is someone Discovery trusts completely.
Discovery has not featured in any stories yet.