What you need to know about the Columbia space shuttle crash

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What you need to know about the Columbia space shuttle crash

It would not be an exaggeration to say that space science is in its golden age today. In the year 2022, we have learned a lot of new things about space thanks to the space explorations conducted by different countries. In 2023, the number of things we know about space will increase even more. Because technological progress provides for the development of space studies, especially security. But not by much, a few decades ago working in space was very different than it is today. Especially in terms of security measures! This is why the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster happened in 2003!

Because of the disaster that occurred in front of the eyes of the whole world, the seven astronauts who set off in the hope of returning home, unfortunately, were never able to complete this journey. The space shuttle Columbia exploded shortly after it entered the Earth’s atmosphere! On the other hand, investigations after the disaster revealed that the accident could have been prevented and made the already sad disaster even more tragic! Here’s what you need to know about the Space Shuttle Columbia crash…

The Columbia space shuttle was launched in 1981

The successful US space mission Apollo 11 whetted the nation’s appetite for space exploration. For this reason, in 1981, a new space shuttle was built with superior technology. The space shuttle was named “Columbia”, referring to the country’s desire to explore space. Columbia made its first space flight that same year.

In the following period, Columbia made 27 successful expeditions into space. But the space shuttle has tragically taken off from Earth 28 times.

Columbia left Earth for the last time on January 16, 2003. The crew of 7 astronauts, Rick D. Different areas of expertise.

However, during liftoff, a piece of the space shuttle broke off into one of the shuttle’s wings, causing damage to the wing. However, this unexpected development did not cause the crew to encounter serious problems.

The crew had no problems during the 16 days that Columbia orbited the Earth. Mission accomplished, time to go home…


The space shuttle took off to return to Earth on February 1, 2003. Unfortunately, Columbia failed to land on its last flight. The section of the wing that was damaged during takeoff caused more serious problems during the “shuttle home”.

The space shuttle Columbia exploded shortly after re-entering the atmosphere!


Columbia was traveling 23 times faster than the speed of sound on its journey home! Because of this, the damage to the shuttle wing increased. In the end, the space shuttle Columbia exploded shortly after re-entering the atmosphere. All seven crew members lost their lives, and Columbia was never able to return home …

Parts of the space shuttle that exploded in the atmosphere scattered thousands of square kilometers!

Some pieces of Columbia can be found here

Many Americans witnessed the shuttle soaring into the sky, spewing terrible flames. On the other hand, parts of the shuttle were scattered across multiple states in the United States. More than 25,000 people have participated in the search and rescue effort.

During the studies, more than 84 thousand pieces of space shuttle debris were found. But these parts made up only 40 percent of the shuttle! The remaining parts have not been found.

Investigations after the terrible tragedy revealed that the accident could have been avoided!


So if NASA had ignored the damage done by the space shuttle at take-off, the seven Columbia astronauts could have returned to Earth. However, the authorities believed that the damage to the shuttle’s wing was so insignificant that it could be ignored and the crew reported accordingly. However, if the damage to the space shuttle had been taken seriously, the astronauts could have repaired it, and this terrible tragedy would not have happened …

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