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Challenger Investigation #548475

NBC Evening News for Friday, Feb 21, 1986
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(Studio: Tom Brokaw) Report introduced.

(Brigham City, UT: Robert Bazell) President commission's investigation into NASA's decision to launch ill-fated Challenger space shuttle despite knowledge of risks involved with solid rocket booster seals under specific weather circumstances examined; scenes shown. [NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) spokesperson Lawrence MULLOY - declines comment.] Commission members noted meeting with officials at Marshall Space Flight Center, Alabama, and Morton Thiokol plant in UT; Morton Thiokol engineers recalled opposing shuttle's launch. NASA's own tests substantiating engineers' concern, carried on at Texas A&M Univ., reviewed. "Aviation Wk. and Space Technology" magazine said claiming NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) ignored test results and implications for launch. Morton Thiokol engineer Allan McDonald's recommendation not to launch said overridden by company vice president Joe Kilminster under pressure from Mulloy.

(Studio: Tom Brokaw) Report introduced.

(NYC: John Hart) Findings of NBC News-Better Govt. Association review of NASA's shortcuts in shuttle program and previous indications of potential problem areas examined; scenes shown. Findings of previous studies listed on screen. [Dr. William ROSTOKER, Dr. D.W. CHILDS, John STEWART, Dr. Michael BILLIT - recall NASA's approach to budget demands, testing.] Apparent role of White House pressure on NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) regarding shuttle program mentioned. [Former astronaut William ANDERS - isn't surprised at Challenger's destruction.] NASA's response to 1967 deaths of astronauts recalled.

(Studio: Tom Brokaw) Stmt. of wives of slain Challenger astronauts on current investigation quoted.

Bazell, Robert;
Brokaw, Tom;
Hart, John

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