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home / archives / science and technology / space exploration and travel / 13th February 1984

First untethered flight in space.

Mission commander Vance Brand said of his two free flying crewmen. "I never thought I'd get them back in." The U.S. shuttlecraft Challenger safely completed the first true round trip into space. Robert Stewart and Bruce McCandless became the first men to fly untethered to a spacecraft when they twice flew about with new gas-propelled back packs.