The Challenger Essay

This essay has a total of 540 words and 3 pages.


The Challenger





The skies were clear on the cold freezing morning of January 28, 1986. Kennedy
Space Center in Florida was busy preparing the launch of the 25th space shuttle
into space. This was one of the most publicized launches because it was the first
time that a civilian, a school teacher, was going into space. The launch of
Challenger had been delayed five times due to bad weather, January 28 was the
coldest day that NASA had ever launched a shuttle. Seventy three seconds into
flight, the Orbiter Challenger exploded, killing all seven of its crew.
The temperature at Kennedy Space Center was 36 degrees F, which was
15 degrees F colder than any other previous launch by NASA. The Solid Rocket
Boosters were ignited, and the thundering noise started. At 0.68 seconds after
ignition, videotape showed black smoke coming from the aft field joint of the right
SOLID ROCKET BOOSTER. The aft field joint is the lower portion of the Solid
Rocket Boosters. The black smoke suggested that grease, joint insulation and
rubber O-rings were being burned. The smoke continued to come from the aft
field joint facing the Exterior Tank, on cycles of 3 puffs of smoke per second. The
last puff of smoke was seen at 2.7 seconds. The black smoke was an indication
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