Columbia Shuttle Essay

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Columbia’s Final Mission video case is designed to help you understand how failures occur and how you might prevent them in your own organizational life.

You have previously been assigned to play a role as a manager or engineer role and central figure in the team that managed this mission. Your password for your role is on the role group assignment page in Blackboard. You reach this page by clicking on Groups from the course home page, locate your assigned role and click on that group. If you have difficulties locating your group please contact me. You will note that there are some features to the video (such as a timeline and a calendar and NO back button) that is different from other videos you may have watched. All of the
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What prior thoughts and beliefs shaped the way you behaved during the mission?
b. What pressures affected you behavior and from where did these pressures originate?
c. In what ways did the culture impact your behavior?
d. If you were in this person’s shoes during the mission do you think you would have behaved differently? Why or why not?

The paper to be turned in should probably not be more than 10 pages double spaced.

Calvin Schomburg, senior engineer
Manager of Vehicle and Systems Analysis – United Space Alliance

Calvin Shomburg was a NASA technician for 38 years and is considered a senior engineer at the Johnson Space Center. He is an expert on the Thermal Protection System (TPS), which consists of tiles that protect the Orbiter from super-hot gases during re-entry into the Earth's atmosphere. Foam strikes have occurred on previous flights, and have always been treated as maintenance issues upon return of the crew and vehicle. The foam strikes to the TPS have a very small chance of causing problems. Schomburg knows that only 200-400 of the over 23,000 tiles, on the left wing, can actually cause an issue. The foam strike on the STS-107 mission was similar to the STS-112, which was classified as a maintenance issue instead of a no safety-of-flight issue. Shomburg’s belief was that the impact at 81 seconds was too late to have enough energy to cause extensive damage to the
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