This is an audio version of the Wikipedia Article:
00:02:38 1 History
00:05:02 2 Spacecraft types
00:05:12 2.1 Crewed spacecraft
00:07:20 2.1.1 Spaceplanes
00:11:07 2.2 Unmanned spacecraft
00:11:17 2.2.1 Designed as manned but flown as unmanned only spacecraft
00:11:45 2.2.2 Semi-manned – manned as space stations or part of space stations
00:12:38 2.2.3 Earth-orbit satellites
00:13:35 2.2.4 Lunar probes
00:15:12 2.2.5 Planetary probes
00:17:46 2.2.6 Other – deep space
00:18:22 2.2.7 Fastest spacecraft
00:19:04 2.2.8 Furthest spacecraft from the Sun
00:20:09 2.3 Unfunded and canceled programs
00:20:20 2.3.1 Manned spacecraft
00:20:48 2.3.2 Multi-stage spaceplanes
00:21:25 2.3.3 SSTO spacecraft
00:21:53 3 Spacecraft under development
00:22:04 3.1 Manned
00:23:42 3.2 Unmanned
00:24:25 4 Subsystems
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"I cannot teach anybody anything, I can only make them think."
A spacecraft is a vehicle or machine designed to fly in outer space. Spacecraft are used for a variety of purposes, including communications, Earth observation, meteorology, navigation, space colonization, planetary exploration, and transportation of humans and cargo. All spacecraft except single-stage-to-orbit vehicles cannot get into space on their own, and require a launch vehicle (carrier rocket).
On a sub-orbital spaceflight, a space vehicle enters space and then returns to the surface, without having gained sufficient energy or velocity to make a full orbit of the Earth. For orbital spaceflights, spacecraft enter closed orbits around the Earth or around other celestial bodies. Spacecraft used for human spaceflight carry people on board as crew or passengers from start or on orbit (space stations) only, whereas those used for robotic space missions operate either autonomously or telerobotically. Robotic spacecraft used to support scientific research are space probes. Robotic spacecraft that remain in orbit around a planetary body are artificial satellites. To date, only a handful of interstellar probes, such as Pioneer 10 and 11, Voyager 1 and 2, and New Horizons, are on trajectories that leave the Solar System.
Orbital spacecraft may be recoverable or not. Most are not. Recoverable spacecraft may be subdivided by method of reentry to Earth into non-winged space capsules and winged spaceplanes.
Humanity has achieved space flight but only a few nations have the technology for orbital launches: Russia (RSA or "Roscosmos"), the United States (NASA), the member states of the European Space Agency (ESA), Japan (JAXA), China (CNSA), India (ISRO), Taiwan (National Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology, Taiwan National Space Organization (NSPO), Israel (ISA), Iran (ISA), and North Korea (NADA).