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Saturday, January 28, 2006

Go For Throttle Up: Twenty Years Ago

Shuttle flights became "routine" in the 80's, and school kids stopped watching. But, with the first teacher in space planning to do lessons from Earth orbit, the televisions were rolled in to the classrooms across the country. And we all saw it, live and in color.

This was the beginning of the end for NASA, though even now that huge bureaucracy hasn't realized it even now. Manned space travel will become routine again, but only when private enterprise is given free reign to do the exploring. The money now going to keep the technology of the '70's going should be reinvested to the 21st century private space enterprises cropping up all over the country. This would be the most fitting memorial to the brave men and women of Challenger.

A note about the photo: This frame captures the moment the O-Ring failed. The first gouts of flame are clearly visible just above the main engine exhaust. Fractions of a second later, it was over, and they were gone.

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