Saturday, July 26, 2008

Unfamiliar angle of a familiar tragedy

Anyone born in the 1970s or before is old enough to remember when the Space Shuttle Challenger exploded just after takeoff on January 28, 1986. When footage is shown of the disaster, it is the familiar closeup shot that probably enters your head.

There were however other cameras on the scene, and this one got a shot that was from much further away, and gives a better idea of what someone on the ground would have seen with their own eyes, rather than what a camera with extreme zoom would see instead:

Watch the whole video, and maybe you can answer everyones question: what exactly is that white thing floating down from the explosion?

Good Day to You, Sir


M.A. said...

This video still gives me chills to this day. I was in the 5th grade and was taking advantage of my set time on the one computer we had in our classroom when my classmate Mary came over and said, "the Space Shuttle just exploded!" I thought she was joking to get me off of the computer (so she could use it). I wish she had been. It was a very sad day.

Anonymous said...

Fascinating, I had never seen that angle before. As to what "it" is...I have no clue especially since the videographer referred to it as a parachute. What could have survived intact enough to deploy a chute?

It seems like with NASA's super high-tech capacity, they would be able to give some explanation. Conspiracy theorists could and probably have wondered why there is no official explanation.

Law and Order Teacher said...

I don't want to feed the conspiracy theorists. They seem to abound in America today. As with all government, an explanation would go a long way. None is ever forthcoming.

Don, American said...

I don't know; ask Industrial Light and Magic.

Texas Truth said...

That IS interesting. I have never seen the incident from that angle. NASA certainly has gone through its share of tragedies. Look at the Edgar Mitchell statements that have came out recently. It seems they take one step forward and two steps back. If they do know what this object is, they should be forthcoming. It might go far in regaining their stature with the public.

Darren said...

I have a video from NASA showing what went wrong with Challenger--it includes close ups of different parts you can see in the debris as it falls to the sea. You can see the crew cabin, and yes, the braking parachute. What we learn in this video is that the vehicle did *not* explode. It ripped apart. The cloud was caused not by smoke but by the immediate release of all the compressed gases (fuel) in the large external tank. THAT is why the crew was conscious during at least part of the fall; there was no explosive shock wave to kill them immediately.

I'll let you borrow it the next time we meet.