Discovery's First Ride
Since that maiden voyage, Discovery has logged the most flight hours of any shuttle in NASA's fleet: The craft has flown 38 missions into space and spent 351 days in orbit so far. If all goes as planned, the shuttle's launch this month will be Discovery's final mission. (Find out how to vote for the wake-up songs to be played during Discovery's final flight.)
Over the years Discovery has earned a reputation among historians and shuttle enthusiasts as the "dependable older sibling" of the space shuttle fleet.
"Its legacy is that it is the reliable workhorse," said Robert Pearlman, editor of the space history and artifacts website collectSPACE.com. "Whenever it's been called into service, it's performed."
With reporting by Ker Than.