On this week in history, on January 28, 1986, the space shuttle Challenger tragically exploded just after liftoff, leading to the deaths of its seven crew members. The cause of the shuttle’s destruction is due to faulty O-rings (that NASA knew were flawed) that allowed pressurized hot gas to be released and impinge upon the external fuel tank; also, the temperature in Cape Canaveral the morning of liftoff was well below what was safe for the engines to be exposed to. As a result of this tragedy, NASA’s shuttle program was stalled for 32 months and the case of the Challenger became a focal point of discussions on aeronautical engineering safety and workplace ethics. Also on this week in history, on January 30, 1933, Adolf Hitler was named Chancellor of Germany by President Paul von Hindenberg. Later that same year, Germany passed the Enabling Act which gave Hitler control of the legislative and executive branches of the government and allowed him to deviate from the constitution; when President von Hindenberg died in 1934, the office of president was abolished and Hitler also became head of state and Supreme Commander of all armed forces. Hitler continued constructing his dictatorship until September 1, 1939 when he and his army invaded western Poland and thus initiated the Second World War.
By: Logan Norris