Space Shuttle Columbia disaster

Space Shuttle Columbia disaster

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Credit: NASA/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Space Shuttle Columbia disaster. Underside of the space shuttle Columbia as it re-entered the Earth's atmosphere after mission STS-107 on 1 February 2003. Shortly after this image was taken Columbia disintegrated, killing all seven astronauts on board. It was concluded that the break up of the space shuttle was due to a defect on the leading edge of the left wing (lower left). A smudge is seen on this leading edge, and what is thought to be a debris trail is at lower left. The space shuttle was about 65 kilometres up and travelling at 20,000 kilometres per hour when it exploded. Debris was scattered over a wide area of the southern USA, mostly in Texas and Louisiana.

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Keywords: 01/02/2003, 1, 1 february 2003, 2000s, 2003, 21st century, accident, columbia, debris, defect, disaster, evidence, fatal, historical, history, in flight, leading edge, manned spaceflight, one, re-entry, shuttle landing, single, smudge, space, space shuttle, spaceflight, technological, technology, trail, underside

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