Mission insignia are a traditional part of our space program. They have been accompanying our astronauts into space since the first brave explorers left the Earth behind. The first mission patch was worn by Soviet cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova on the Vostok-6 mission in 1963. American astronauts, most of whom were military pilots, took their tradition of shoulder patches with them into space. The first American mission patch was worn by astronauts on Gemini 5 in 9165.
Welcome to the most comprehensive collection of Space Mission Insignia and Space Mission Patch images anywhere on the Web. The images provided on these pages are for viewing enjoyment only. High resolution images may be acquired from NASA. All of these images were obtained from NASA sources and NASA partners. Click on the categories below to view the collections.
Project Mercury was the first American human spaceflight program. It consisted of 6 manned missions from 1961 through 1963. Alan Shepard was the first American in space on may 5, 1962.
Project Gemini was America's second manned space program. It consisted of 10 manned missions from 1965 to 1966 and perfected technologies and procedures for the upcoming Apollo missions.
Project Apollo was America's third manned space program. It consisted of 12 manned mission from 1967 to 1972, culminating in astronauts walking on and exploring the surface of the Moon.
Project Skylab was America's first working space station. It orbited the Earth from 1973 to 1979, and included a workshop, a solar observatory, and other scientific systems.
The Space Shuttle was America's first partially reusable spacecraft. Its official program name was Space Transportation System, or STS. The first manned flight took place on February 7, 2001.
The next five year period of the Space Shuttle program saw tragedy with the Challenger accident, but also saw many successes the successful launches of Magellan and the Hubble Space Telescope.
From 1992 to 1995 there were a total of 35 Space Shuttle flights. This included two successful repair missions for the Solar Max satellite and the Hubble Space Telescope.
From 1996 to 2000 there were a total of 28 Space Shuttle flights. This included the first launch of a module for the International Space Station and astronaut John Glenn's historic return to space.
The final decade of the Space Shuttle program saw 34 flights. This included the tragic loss of shuttle Columbia during STS-107 on 2003. The last flight of the shuttle program occurred on July 8, 2011.
There were other insignia created for the Space Shuttle besides the patches used during the missions. These include test flights, support crews, shuttle programs, and payload experiments.
The International Space Station was first launched into orbit on November 20, 1998. Several missions have served aboard the station and their mission patches image can be found here.
A number of unmanned missions have been sent to the International Space Station to ferry supplies and experiments. These missions launch from Russia, Europe, Japan, and the United States.
The Russian Soyuz program has served as transportation for several of the missions to the International Space Station. The Soyuz program has their own mission patches for each flight to the station.
Mir was a space station that operated in low Earth orbit for 15 years from 1986 to 2001. The Soyuz spacecraft served as the primary method of transportation for crews to and from the space station.
The Soyuz program was a Russian manned space program that began in the early 1960s. The Soyuz spacecraft eventually became a reliable means for transporting astronauts to Earth orbit.
The European Space Agency (ESA) is second only to NASA when it comes to space exploration. Established in 1975, the ESA is an international organization with 22 member countries headquartered in Paris, France.
The Shenzhou program is a manned Chinese space program operated by the People's Republic of China. It is directed by the China National Space Administration (CNSA).
The US space program has seen many missions canceled due to budget limitations and unforeseen technical problems. See some of the designs for the missions that never made it into space.
With the retirement of the American Space Shuttle program, several private companies have begun to develop vehicles to launch satellites and ferry supplies and experiments to the International Space Station.
During the following two years, commercial space missions continued to support the International Space Station in addition to launching satellites and preparing for the first commercial manned flight to the ISS.
In 2019, NASA continued to depend on commercial space companies to launch satellites and support the ISS. Several test flights also began in preparation for the first commercial manned flight in 2020.
Space travel programs create their own unique program insignia graphics. From NASA office and divisions to new space travel programs, you will find a variety of interesting designs here.
Our Solar System continues to be one of the most exciting fields of space exploration and research. Missions through the Solar System each receive their own unique mission insignia.
There are about 560 active satellites currently in orbit around the Earth, with many more planned for the future. Earth satellites and orbiting space telescopes have their own mission insignia.