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Spacecraft is a generic term used to describe all vehicles that are designed to fly in space. Normally this would apply to vehicles that reach orbit, or travel beyond the Earth. However, spacecraft is also used to describe vehicles that reach space, normally defined as 100 kilometers (62 miles) altitude, on a sub-orbital flight.

A satellite is an object that orbits the earth, or other space body. A satellite can either be natural (e.g. a moon) or artificial. Artificial satellites can either be manned or unmanned.

Classes of Spacecraft

Manned Spacecraft

Orbital (Satellites)

Sub-orbital (Ballistic)

Earth Orbit Satellites

Lunar Probes

Interplanetary Probes




Halley's Comet



Outer Planets

  • Voyager 2 - Uranus and Neptune via Jupiter and Saturn

Sounding Rockets

Spacecraft in Literature & Art

External Links


See also

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