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KumariMemberMay 25, 2021 at 10:57 pm::
Kalpana chawla was the first woman to go to the space . She was an Indian American space traveler and space shuttle mission specialist. She was born on March 17th ,1962 in Karnal, Haryana and died on February 1,2003. She was on of the seven crew members who died in Columbia spacecraft disaster. She was the yongest sibling of the family and her father’s name was- Shri Banarasi Lal Chawla and mother’s name was Sanjyoti Devi. Kalpana completed her btech from aeronautical engineering from punjab engineering college and did her masters in aeronautical engineering from University of Texas. She got a title of Vidya Vaschaspati in aeronautical engineering. In the early 1990s she started working as a vice president at AIIM’s research centre. Kalpana joined NASA’s astronaut corps on 1997 and was selected for her first flight in 1997 only. Her first space mission started in 1995 She was the part of the 7 member astronaut group of STS-7. There were two people of Indian origin who flew on the flight. One of them were kalpana chawaala and other one was Rakesh Sharma. She spent 360 hours in the space and travelled more than 1 crore miles and 252 revolution over 2 weeks.
In 2002 kalpana chaawala was selected for her 2nd flight as the mission head in STS-107. On the morning of Feb. 1, 2003, the space shuttle returned to Earth, which has to land at Kennedy Space Center. At launch, an average piece of insulation had broken off and damaged the thermal protection system of the shuttle’s wing, the shield that protects it from heat during re-entry. As the shuttle passed through the atmosphere, hot gas streaming into the wing caused it to break up. The unstable craft rolled , thrashed the astronauts about. Less than a minute passed before the ship depressurized, killing the crew. The shuttle broke up over Texas and Louisiana before plunging into the ground. The accident was the second major disaster for the space shuttle program, following the 1986 explosion of the shuttle Challenger.
The entire crew of seven was killed. In addition to Chawla, the crew included:
• Commander Rick D. Husband
• Pilot William C. McCool
• Payload Commander Michael P. Anderson
• Payload Specialist Ilan Ramon, the first Israeli astronaut
• Mission Specialists David M. Brown and Laurel B. Clark