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Challenger Investigation #308256

CBS Evening News for Thursday, Feb 13, 1986
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(Studio: Dan Rather) Possibility further indications of space shuttle Challenger's explosion thought found; acting NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) administration William Graham said not told until after tragedy of agency's concern over potential for solid rocket booster catastrophe. Details given. NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) reported proceeding with its teacher-in-space program by offering place on shuttle mission to Barbara Morgan, Christa McAuliffe's runner-up.

(DC: Lem Tucker) NASA's announcement of plans to continue civilian-in- space program examined. [GRAHAM - claims a teacher will be first private citizen in space.] [Teacher finalist Judy GARCIA - notes program wasn't one-shot deal.] [MORGAN - explains need to continue for children's sake.] Criticism of idea as public relations gimmick outlined. [Former Representative Larry WINN, Junior - dislikes private citizen aspect of shuttle program; attributes it to sex appeal.] [Former NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) adviser John NAUGLE - explains recommending sending civilians on missions.]

(Studio: Dan Rather) President commission investigating Challenger's destruction noted touring Kennedy Space Center; details given, scenes shown. Contd. recovery of shuttle debris discussed. Focus of inquiry on solid rocket booster seals explained, illustrated on screen. NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) document of December 17, 1982, indicating agency's knowledge of possible disaster linked to seals noted; memo quoted on screen. Waiver signed shortly after memorandum by deputy program director Michael Weeks for continued shuttle launches despite NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) policy on necessity of backup systems considered. Seal failure during April 19, 1985, launch discussed. NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) mentioned signing contract for private satellite launches; details given.

Rather, Dan;
Tucker, Lem

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