May 31, 1987
The original O-ring shuttle materials blamed for failing and causing the 1986 Challenger disaster appear to be superior to other seals, a Morton Thiokol Inc. official said. Tests involving Vitron and O-rings made from other rubber-like seals between joints in the solid-fuel booster rockets indicate Vitron performs better, Carver Kennedy, the head of the firm's redesign program, said at its headquarters at Brigham City, Utah.
October 11, 1988 |
The O-ring seals in the joints of the space shuttle Discovery's booster rockets suffered no damage during last month's launch, NASA reported Monday. The shuttle Challenger was destroyed and its crew of seven lost on Jan. 28, 1986, when super-hot gas and flames burned through the synthetic rubber O-rings in a faulty joint in one of its boosters. Discovery's Sept.
August 26, 1988 |
NASA officials revealed today that up to seven crucial O-ring seals used in space shuttle boosters appear to have been sabotaged earlier this summer but said the damaged seals never made it out of the factory and never threatened an actual flight. "We are absolutely sure we don't have any bad stuff in any hardware, both test hardware or flight hardware," said Royce Mitchell, a booster project manager at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.
August 18, 1988 |
A full-scale shuttle booster, loaded with 1.1 million pounds of fuel and deliberately riddled with major flaws, was test fired today in a crucial make-or-break bid to prove new O-ring joints will prevent another Challenger disaster. The 126-foot rocket, mounted on its side in a massive test stand in the Utah desert at Morton Thiokol Inc.'s booster production plant, roared to life at 1 p.m. MDT and burned for a full two minutes as planned.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 2, 1995
NASA has reported that evidence of leakage and extensive damage to O-ring seals have been discovered in the nozzle joint of the space shuttle solid rocket boosters after the last two flights. The same joint leakage problems and design flaws that initiated the Challenger disaster, nine years ago, are still present and have not been satisfactorily corrected. As a result of these abnormalities, NASA is seriously considering grounding the shuttle indefinitely. After the Challenger accident, Congress initiated the Advanced Solid Rocket Motor (ASRM)
March 5, 1996 |
Hot rocket gas singed O-rings in Columbia's booster rockets during liftoff nearly two weeks ago but did not endanger the space shuttle or its seven astronauts, NASA said. The two scorched O-rings, one in each of the solid-fuel boosters, are used during assembly to keep adhesive away from the critical primary O-ring seals.