|Moderated By: Rande Is -- (Not Moderated) -- Started: 2/1/2003 10:30:14 AM Revision History|
At 9am EST on February 1st, the U.S. Space Shuttle Columbia, America's 140th manned space flight, broke apart upon re-entry into earth's atmosphere. . . 39 miles (207,000 ft.)above the earth . . traveling at Mach 6 (12,500 mph).
The first sensor reportedly lost was the hydraulics. Soon after all tracking data was lost.
On Jan. 16, shortly after Columbia lifted off, a piece of insulating foam on its external fuel tank came off and was believed to have struck the left wing of the shuttle. Leroy Cain, the lead flight director in Mission Control, assured reporters Friday that engineers had concluded that any damage to the wing was considered minor and posed no safety hazard.
The 7 member crew can be seen at: space.com
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