The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Categories: Catastrophes | North America | Space

On January 28, 1986, one of the most high-profile catastrophes in the history of astronautics occurred. 73 seconds after launch over the Atlantic Ocean, the Challenger spacecraft exploded and collapsed.

Thousands of spectators gathered in the stands opposite the launch pad to watch the launch of the Challenger. The launch was also watched by millions on television - the launch of the shuttle was broadcast live.

It was the tenth flight for the space shuttle. Among the seven members of the crew was teacher Christa McAuliffe, the first space tourist. She won the right to participate in the flight in a nationwide competition.

At an altitude of fourteen kilometers, the left solid-fuel booster detached from one of the two mounts. Turning around the second, the booster pierced the main fuel tank. Due to the violation of the symmetry of thrust and air resistance, the ship deviated from the axis and collapsed. The bow, where the astronauts were, was torn off from the rest of the ship.

At first, no one understood what was the matter - everyone, including the CNN live commentator, decided that the boosters had detached from the ship. Eyewitnesses say that people in the stands began to applaud - and only when the wreckage of the shuttle began to fall into the ocean, people suddenly realized what had happened.

After fragments of the ship, including the crew compartment, were raised from the bottom, it turned out that at least two participants in the flight remained alive even after the explosion - their individual air supply devices were turned on.

(Total 22 photos)

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God Source: NASA

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Crew (front row, left to right): Michael Smith, Francis Scobie, Ronald McNair; in the second row from left to right: Allison Onizuka, Krista McAuliffe, Gregory Jarvis, Judith Resnick.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Shuttle Integrated Simulator, December 1985: Michael Smith, Allison Onizuka, Judith Resnick, Francis Scobie.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Flight preparation at the Lyndon Johnson Space Center.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Two crew members train to leave the ship in case of an emergency.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Sharon Krista McAuliffe trains in zero gravity.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Sharon Krista McAuliffe and Lyndon Johnson Space Center Specialist Barbara Morgan during flight preparations.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Sharon Krista McAuliffe and Michael Smith in the shuttle simulator.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Sharon Christa McAuliffe and Barbara Morgan.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Three crew members of the STS-51L mission at Ellington Airport.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Barbara Morgan and Sharon Christa McAuliffe at the Kennedy Space Center watching the Challenger launch on October 30, 1985.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

The crew of the STS-51L mission.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Breakfast before spacecraft launch.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Before departure.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Launch of the Space Shuttle Challenger on January 28, 1986, 11:38 am (EST) with seven crew members on board.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

One of the last photographs of the Challenger before the crash.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

11:39.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Seconds after the crash.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

The wreckage of the Challenger salvaged from the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean by the United States Coast Guard at Cape Canaveral Air Force Base.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Thousands of employees of the Lyndon Johnson Space Center, relatives and friends of the deceased members of the Challenger crew before the farewell ceremony.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

Farewell ceremony, speech by President Ronald Reagan.

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

40th President of the United States Ronald Reagan at the farewell ceremony for the fallen crew members of the Space Shuttle Challenger. The President said: "They threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God."

The crash of the Challenger: they threw off the harsh shackles of the Earth and touched God

January 26, 2012, monument at Arlington National Cemetery.

Keywords: Spaceship | Astronautics | Shuttle

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