Definition of Columbia from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



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the first US space shuttle (= spacecraft that can be used again). Its first flight was in 1981 with two astronauts, John Young and Robert Crippen. By 1996 Columbia had made 20 flights and that year made the longest one (more than 405 hours). In 2003 all seven of its crew members died when the space shuttle exploded as it was returning to earth.