Set of 5 Space Shuttle Program Astronaut Patches (Does include Payload Specialist Patch that is not in photo)
Astronauts hold a variety of ranks and positions, and each of these roles carries responsibilities that are essential to the operation of a spacecraft. A spacecraft's cockpit, filled with sophisticated equipment, requires skills differing from those used to manage the scientific equipment on board, and so on.
Overall mission success, safety of crew and Shuttle, maneuvers Shuttle with assistance from Pilot.
Assist the Commander in maneuvering the Shuttle. May be responsible for release and recovery of satellites.
Payload Commander (PLC)
A Mission Specialist with additional responsibility for the management of the science or other major payload elements of the mission.
Mission Specialist (MS)
A NASA astronaut assigned to a Shuttle crew with mission-specific duties.
Technical experts who accompany specific payloads such as a commercial or scientific satellites.