The extraordinary life aboard NASA’s Skylab, 1970s | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED X-Frame-Options: SAMEORIGIN

The extraordinary life aboard NASA’s Skylab, 1970s

Skylab was America's first step towards creating something other than a good place to visit. Developed in the shadow of the Apollo Moon mission and using hardware originally built for Apollo, the Skylab space station took the nation's astronauts from space explorer to spaceflight. The program proved that humans can live and work successfully in space.

To many members of the public, Skylab is probably best known for two things - its beginning and its end. During the launch of the Skylab workshop in May 1973, an unexpected problem damaged the station and its way into orbit. And of course, Skylab caught the world's attention in 1979 over the Indian Ocean and Australia and made its furious return.

But among those books lies a great story from an important period in the history of spacecraft. Skylab was operated by three different astronauts: Skylab 2, Skylab 3 and Skylab 4. Major operations included an orbital workshop, a solar observatory, Earth observation and hundreds of experiments.