The space shuttle named Challenger exploded 73 seconds after lift off on January 28, 1986.
All the seven astronauts on board which include;
1. Commander Francis (“Dick”) Scobee.
2. Pilot Michael Smith.
3. Mission specialists Ellison Onizuka.
4. Judith Resnik.
5. Ronald McNair.
6. Hughes Aircraft engineer Gregory Jarvis.
7. Payload specialist Christa McAuliffe.
They would have been the first teacher in space even before those recorded in history, all were killed at the incidence of the blast, the video footage show it all, No sign of survival.
The fault was caused by NASA’s management and booster manufacturer Morton Thiokol for ignoring warnings about the O-rings malfunctioning in cold weather, which technically occurred during the flight in space at about just 73 seconds after lift off of the Changer Space Shuttle.
The night before the launch was very cold, which hardened the rubber O-rings that sealed the joint between two sections of the shuttle’s solid rocket boosters. The joint thus could not seal and allowed hot gases to escape and melt a strut joining the booster to the fuel-filled external tank. The booster swiveled to compensate for the loss of the strut and collided with the external tank. The shuttle then exploded in a fireball.
President Ronald Reagan appointed a commission to investigate the disaster. It included astronauts Neil Armstrong and Sally Ride and physicist Richard Feynman (who famously demonstrated the O-ring failure by using a glass of ice water). The commission faulted NASA’s management and booster manufacturer Morton Thiokol for ignoring warnings about the O-rings malfunctioning in cold weather. NASA had also cut corners in trying to achieve an ambitious goal of 24 shuttle flights a year.
The shuttle did not fly again until 1988, although the flight was successful and the dream that the reusable spacecraft would make space travel routine had vanished away from man’s history to space.
A Video footage of the Challenger Explosion.
This video shows the Challenger lift off and explosion at Cape Canaveral, Florida, January 28, 1986.
Stock footage courtesy The WPA Film Library.
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