A space capsule is an often-crewed spacecraft that uses a blunt-body reentry capsule to reenter the Earth's atmosphere without wings. Capsules are distinguished from satellites primarily by the ability to survive reentry and return a payload to the Earth's surface from orbit. Capsule-based crewed spacecraft such as Soyuz or Orion is often supported by a service or adapter module and sometimes augmented with an extra module for extended space operations. Capsules make up the majority of crewed spacecraft designs, although one crewed spaceplane, the Space Shuttle, has flown in orbit.

Spaceflight II

Spaceflight (or space flight) applies astronautics to fly spacecraft into or through outer space, either with or without humans on board. Most spaceflight is uncrewed and conducted mainly with spacecraft such as satellites in orbit around Earth and includes space probes for flights beyond Earth orbit. Such spaceflight operates either by telerobotic or autonomous control.