Login | STScI Home | HubbleSite | Copyright, Content Use, and Policies
STScI Webcast

Meridian Speeches

Columbia Accident Investigation Board

Presented by: Dr. Douglas Osheroff (Stanford University)
Category: Special Interest   Duration: 1 hour and 30 minutes   Broadcast date: December 15, 2005
  • Bookmark/Share

Douglas Osherhoff is a Nobel Prize-winning physicist and faculty member in the Departments of Physics and Applied Physics at Stanford University. He was selected to serve on the Space Shuttle Columbia investigation panel, serving much the same role as Richard Feynman did on the Space Shuttle Challenger panel. In this talk, Prof. Osherhoff will describe how the board was able to determine with almost absolute certainty the physical cause of the Columbia accident. In addition, Prof. Osherhoff will discuss its organizational and cultural causes, which are rooted deep in the culture of the human spaceflight program. Why did NASA continue to fly the shuttle system despite the persistent failure of a vital sub-system that it should have known did indeed pose a safety risk on every flight? Finally, Prof. Osherhoff will touch on the future role humans are likely to play in the exploration of space.

Related Documents

Douglas Osheroff's Arc Jet Cable movie MPEG movie (.mpg)
Douglas Osheroff's Debris Strike E212 movie QuickTime movie (.mov)
Douglas Osheroff's Debris Strike ET208 movie QuickTime movie (.mov)
Douglas Osheroff's presentation PowerPoint (.ppt)