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What happened in the Columbia space shuttle disaster and what caused it?

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A documentary about a space shuttle mission which ended in tragedy is airing on BBC Two tonight (Monday February 12). It's been 21 years since all seven members of Space Shuttle Columbia lost their lives when the aircraft disintegrated after re-entering the Earth's atmosphere after a 16-day research mission.

The incident forced NASA to delay the construction of the International Space Centre for two years, while the Space Shuttle fleet was grounded for 29 months before being retired.

It was the second tragedy of its kind, following the Challenger disaster 17 years prior. Rick Husband, commander; Michael Anderson, payload commander; David Brown, mission specialist; Kalpana Chawla, mission specialist; Laurel Clark, mission specialist; William McCool, pilot; and Ilan Ramon, payload specialist from the Israeli Space Agency were all onboard the space shuttle when it launched from Kennedy Space Centre, Florida, on January 16 2003. Try MEN Premium now for FREE...

just click here to give it a go. Little did they know that they'd never make it back to earth alive.

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