STS-87 Mission Specialist Kalpana Chawla, Ph.D., sits in her launch and entry suit in the Operations and Checkout Building before she and the five other crew members of STS-87 depart for Launch Pad 39B. There, the Space Shuttle Columbia awaits liftoff on a 16-day mission to perform microgravity and solar research. Born in Karnal, India, Dr. Chawla received her doctorate of philosophy in aerospace engineering from the University of Colorado in 1988. This is Chawlas first mission for NASA. (Photo Release Date: 11/19/97 )

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