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Space Shuttle Challenger Lost 73 Seconds After Lift-off

Historical Events

After being delayed for several days, due to weather and other miscellaneous systems problems, space shuttle mission STS-51-L launched from the Kennedy Space Center at 11:38 am on January 28, 1986. 73 seconds after launch the shuttle exploded, killing all on board. The explosion was later tracked to a seal in one of the solid fuel booster rockets that had failed due to the cold temperatures it had been exposed to during the delays.

The explosion would ground the entire shuttle program for more than two years while the cause was identified and major safety improvements made.

Lost in the disaster was: Francis R. Scobee (Commander), Michael J. Smith (Pilot), Judith A. Resnik (Mission Specialist), Ellison S. Onizuka (Mission Specialist), Ronald E. McNair (Mission Specialist), Gregory B. Jarvis (Payload Specialist) and Sharon Christa McAuliffe (Payload Specialist). Christa McAuliffe was a teacher selected to be the first in NASA's Teacher in Space Project (TISP).

Source: NASA

Posted:  2002-04-15  1:35:16 PM

This fact has been viewed 4988 times.

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