Space Shuttle Research Paper

Superior Essays
We as humans have been obliged to adapt to our surroundings. Throughout the course of history, any changes in the atmosphere or on Earth in general have forced us to adapt and transform to withstand certain conditions. Whether it is naturally within our bodies or by the harsh climate causing humans to adapt, survival is necessary in life as we know it. Starting in the 1950’s, scientists, astronauts and aerospace engineers now had to consider adapting to the conditions of space. From a great decrease in gravity, to almost no air in the atmosphere, to even the near absolute zero temperatures, space requires great attention in understanding and adapting. Unfortunately, there have been many accidents pertaining to space shuttles throughout NASA’s …show more content…
Not too long into the initial launch, a piece of foam insulation from the shuttle’s propellant tank broke off and managed to hit one of the shuttle’s wings. Engineers tried using cameras to identify if the shuttle was damaged in any way or in need of repair. They believed that the wing needed to be repaired and that if it was not repaired, there could be a substantial failure. NASA management believed otherwise, insisting that there was nothing that could be done as it was already in orbit. An attempt at a rescue mission or a quick fix from the help of an already planned launch of the shuttle Atlantis could have been completed but the decision was too risky and in too short of a time frame. Thus while entering the Earth’s atmosphere, the heat resistant tiles on the damaged wing were missing, allowing for wind and heat to enter the wing and ultimately cause it explode. Just a few short minutes later, the entire shuttle detonated and all seven astronauts on board were killed instantly. The debris from the explosion landed in three different states throughout the southern United States. The initial piece of foam that flew into the wing during the launch of Columbia could not have been avoided, or at least there was no known reason for how that could have happened. Yet when it came to putting an effort in rescuing or helping out the crew members of the space shuttle, NASA management deemed it unnecessary and not even worth considering. They knew something was going to go wrong but they instead chose to ignore all the signs by pushing the problem away and not investigating and communicating with other professionals. Therefore, due to lack of communication and avoiding potential problems, NASA caused yet another failure to occur as well as losing more lives with the explosion

Related Documents

  • Great Essays

    Space Junk Essay

    • 1676 Words
    • 7 Pages

    Space debris does not fall back harmlessly into earth or burn up in the atmosphere as many people assume. Instead the junk orbits the earth for centuries and accumulates as space activities continue to rise. According to a study engineered by NASA (2011), orbital debris has reached a point where it has become hazardous to astronauts and space crafts travelling around the orbit. Even the smallest of these air pollutants can damage or completely destroy a spacecraft in the case of collision(s). The Kessler syndrome predicts that space junk collisions will become more frequent hence creating a series of effects that will eventually make the earth’s orbit crowded with orbital debris (Hall 11).…

    • 1676 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Great Essays

    Knowing this immediately poses the question: Did the engineer who was responsible for sketch the Concorde’s wheel system forget to include the important spacer in the design? The engineers at Air France evidently overlooked fixing these minute problems that would have saved a hundred innocent lives and an airline. Yet these very small problems will now irrevocably haunt them for their entire lives. The fact that the design and the engineering team had known about these problems and had done nothing, raises huge ethical concerns. An engineer’s foremost obligation is to the public welfare and engineers must “approve only those designs that safeguard the life, health, welfare and property of the public” (Engineering Your Future 8Th ED).…

    • 1499 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Great Essays

    Sustainability in Space One may think that Earth’s orbit has an unlimited amount of space to hold whatever celestial bodies or satellites it may encounter, but like Earth’s population, there are always limits on space. NASA states that there are over 21,000 objects in Earth’s orbit today that can be considered debris over ten centimeters (Stansbery). Scientists worry about these objects colliding with one another. Collision could cause a major snowball effect that could end up damaging an important satellite or group of satellites that provide us with our everyday privileges, such as television or wireless internet. Space debris is a major problem in Earth’s orbit due to the fact that the quantity our planet’s orbit can withstand is much closer to its limit.…

    • 1499 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Superior Essays

    With space exploration, we could find habitable planets for us to live on. This will eliminate the possibility for the human race to become extinct. Daniel Hohler claims, that “ We need somewhere to put all these people, or we all might end up living in skyscrapers, see all animal’s habitats destroyed, and smog up the air beyond what is breathable” (Planet Save). This would be a horrible world to live in, and not the kind of place anyone would want to live in. This a big problem in the world, but people refuse to focus on the problem, and try to fix it.…

    • 1286 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Superior Essays

    For instance, “NASA’s FY 2011 budget of $17.5 billion to fund new science mission, ground flying telescope.” After all, what useful information have we been giving to provide evidence for life elsewhere in the universe. Space exploration critics would argue that it is not acceptable to invest in something such as exploring outer space when several people on our planet are unable to meet their basic needs. New inventions that had been sent to other planet also create wastes in which it cannot be destroy, thus not only we are destroying Earth but we are also trashing our neighbouring planet. Space agencies would need to employed more people to reach their goals and the consequences of launching these inventions into space will double the…

    • 1202 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Disposal of Nuclear waste is most important part of nuclear energy generation that can effect the hazardous materials on animals and plant life. (Ruckelshaus, 2009). Because disposal of nuclear waste is extremely dangerous, scientists suggest a lot of solutions but at the end was a failed idea such as underground burial. That underground burial lead to might spreading of radiation in future because nuclear waste will remain radioactive for hundreds of years. At 1982 United states federal law proposed idea that using the space shuttle as a garbage disposal vehicle, but shuttle flights not became enough or frequent enough and another problem is very expensive to carry to the wide space (Claiborne, 2004).…

    • 1765 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Apollo 13 Journey

    • 1503 Words
    • 7 Pages

    In the last 35 years, 789 out of 833 people have returned to Earth on a NASA Shuttle. However, seven of the casualties were from a failed reentry of the atmosphere which occurred on February 1st, 2003 when the STS-107 Columbia burnt up and disintegrated during reentry. In this log, one will learn how a space shuttle is designed and how the trajectory a ship takes to reenter the Earth’s atmosphere safely. Space is everything, discovered known places, and also the dangerous unknown. However, when astronauts and cosmonauts return to Earth from space, it take a lot of hard work to return safely.…

    • 1503 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    We don’t know very much about our Earth alone, so moving to another planet doesn’t make a very large difference, and the pollution we could make by spaceships and other junk in space could really interfere with the gases in the air. Not only that but just like on Earth, we could create so much fossil fuel to the point where everything would just happen all over again. Keith Wagstaff, the author of “Neil deGrasse Tyson on the Future of U.S. Space Exploration After Curiosity” explains some of the risks of space travel by stating “It’s not possible because a space frontier is expensive, it has unknown risks, and it has unquantified risks. Historically, governments have done this. They have drawn the maps, they have found where the trade winds are, they have invented the new tools to go where no one has gone before.” (Wagstaff).…

    • 835 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Additionally, a defective O-ring on a rocket that was carrying the Shuttle Challenger caused an explosion during takeoff that ended the lives of seven astronauts. Man-made creations will never be without flaw and these events certainly prove…

    • 1072 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Scientists can no longer trust the lunar evidence they retrieved from the moon over 40 years ago because the planet could have changed. There are many incalculable factors that could’ve altered the moon’s state over time, such as asteroid blows and erosion; the moon could be completely different in structure now. There hasn’t been a human being on the moon for decades, mankind must return to the celestial body to conduct more accurate lunar research. A greater knowledge of space life can open doors to possible colonization on farther planets such as Mars or…

    • 806 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays