Challenger Disaster - EARLY WARNINGS

The official insignia, for Challenger’s STS 51-L mission, includes something unusual: an apple.  It symbolizes that a teacher was part of the shuttle’s 7-member crew.


A potential disaster had loomed long before that fateful January day.

Although NASA had flown twenty-four successful shuttle missions before STS 51-L (the official name for the January 1986 Challenger mission), other flights had experienced lesser versions of the same problem which caused the Challenger explosion.

Neither the astronauts, nor their families, knew about it.

But the manufacturer of the shuttle's solid rocket booster (SRB) and solid rocket motor (SRM) knew. So did some of the management officials at NASA.

Roger Boisjoly a Morton Thiokol engineer, did his best to warn both his employer and NASA. He, and others, knew about the design flaw.

But the people Boisjoly reported to wouldn't listen.

And the people who made the ultimate decisions at NASA weren't told.

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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5190stories and lessons created

Original Release: Oct 01, 1999

Updated Last Revision: Jul 15, 2019

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"EARLY WARNINGS" AwesomeStories.com. Oct 01, 1999. Feb 19, 2020.
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