Panel: NASA's shuttle efforts fall short

Jun 28, 2005

An advisory panel says NASA has not fully met three key safety changes it agreed to make in the wake the Columbia disaster that killed the seven-member crew.

The advisory panel, headed by two former astronauts, said Monday that NASA has made significant improvements since foam debris generated during liftoff caused the Columbia to disintegrate Feb. 1, 2003, on re-entry.

However, the panel said NASA had fallen short in three of 15 areas of improvement before returning the shuttle fleet to service: eliminating all ice or foam debris on takeoff, creating a precise analysis of risks that debris poses and making sure damage can be repaired in orbit.

The panel was to present its recommendations to NASA Administrator Michael Griffin, who told The New York Times he expects "vigorous debate" during a flight readiness review this week that could return the shuttle Discovery to orbit as soon as mid-July.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International

Explore further: NASA image: Curiosity's stars and stripes

Related Stories

Five space travel accidents that shaped the modern era

Nov 05, 2014

Last week was a particularly grim one for private space flights. Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo crashed in the Mojave Desert, about 150km north of Los Angeles, killing a pilot, Michael Alsbury, and seriously ...

End dawns for Europe's space cargo delivery role

Jul 27, 2014

Europe will close an important chapter in its space flight history Tuesday, launching the fifth and final robot ship it had pledged for lifeline deliveries to the International Space Station.

Recommended for you

NASA image: Curiosity's stars and stripes

14 minutes ago

This view of the American flag medallion on NASA's Mars rover Curiosity was taken by the rover's Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) during the 44th Martian day, or sol, of Curiosity's work on Mars (Sept. 19, 2012). ...

NASA image: Stellar sparklers that last

44 minutes ago

While fireworks only last a short time here on Earth, a bundle of cosmic sparklers in a nearby cluster of stars will be going off for a very long time. NGC 1333 is a star cluster populated with many young ...

Light echo helps researchers map out parts of galaxy

4 hours ago

Thousands of years before humans invented agriculture, a bright burst of X-rays left the dense neutron star Circinus X-1, located in the faint Southern constellation Circinus. A year and a half ago, those ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.