NASA Explosion: The Challenger Space Shuttle Disaster

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The Challenger Space Shuttle Disaster is an event that happened on January 28, 1986. The Challenger Space Shuttle was made in order to send scientific experiments as well as deploy satellites into space. The shuttle was designed in order to be the first reusable shuttle, as well as take the first average American citizen into space. Challenger’s maiden voyage was on April 4, 1983. That mission was the first to deploy satellites in the Tracking and Data Relay System Constellation, as well as see the first spacewalk of the Space Shuttle program. Afterwards, it made eight successful voyages prior to the year of 1986. The Challenger Shuttle met its demise on January 28, 1986. After 73 seconds into flight, a booster failure caused an explosion…show more content…
When the mission was proposed to NASA, they set out to contractors to build a reusable shuttle that can support a manned flight. The first mistake that they made was going with the lowest bidder, Thiokol. A company that has no prior experience building rocketry, nor the resources to properly research and develop a reusable shuttle. Due to lack of experience, Thiokol decided to base the solid rocket motor design after the Air Force’s Titan III. It was considered one of the most reliable solid-fuel rockets at the time. However, the engineers couldn’t simply recreate the same design. The new solid rocket motor design has to be vastly larger than the Titans motor, and it had to be refitted and refurbished for multiple uses. The engineers from other contractors told NASA about Thiokol’s inexperience, but weren’t able to convince them to go with a higher costing contract. Budget constraints caused a number of issues to the program. Since Thiokol was based in Utah, the rocket had to be built there and shipped to Florida. The only way to transport the rocket was by pieces on a train. One design constraint that arose was the loading capacity of the train, as well as the proper dimension to fit through tunnels. Since the rockets were so heavy, it would distort and flatten on its side when it was being transported. The rockets went from a circular shape to an oval one. NASA tried to convince the federal government for funding to build a rocket factory in Florida to combat these issues, but weren’t able to do
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