Skip to main content
CNN EditionScience & Space
The Web     
Powered by
powered by Yahoo!
Space Shuttle Columbia

NASA to loan Columbia debris for study

Story Tools

•  Audio Slide Show: Shuttle lost
•  Timeline: Investigation
•  Gallery: New safety guidelines
•  Gallery: Columbia crew
•  Report: Findings, counsel

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Florida (CNN) -- Debris from space shuttle Columbia will be made available to researchers to help build better hypersonic aircraft and better spacecraft in the future, NASA announced Monday.

The loan program will be similar to another NASA program in which researchers can borrow moon rocks for study.

NASA has not decided whether to permit museums to display pieces of debris, but is open to the concept, said Mike Leinbach, chairman of the Columbia reconstruction team.

Columbia broke apart as it re-entered Earth's atmosphere February 1. All seven crew members were killed in the disaster. The Columbia Accident Investigation Board is probing the cause of the shuttle's disintegration.

Debris from the explosion of the space shuttle Challenger in 1986 is permanently sealed in a silo at Kennedy Space Center and there are no plans to release it for study.

Story Tools
Subscribe to Time for $1.99 cover
Top Stories
Quake jitters hit California
Top Stories
CNN/Money: Security alert issued for 40 million credit cards

International Edition
CNN TV CNN International Headline News Transcripts Advertise With Us About Us
   The Web     
Powered by
© 2005 Cable News Network LP, LLLP.
A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines. Contact us.
external link
All external sites will open in a new browser. does not endorse external sites.
 Premium content icon Denotes premium content.
Add RSS headlines.