The Engineer

The Life and Times of Donald F. Simmons

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Last week they were checking out a new NOAA Earth Science satellite, mounted on what they call a "turn-over" cart, so-called because the satellite is securely attached to it with 24 bolts so they can rotate it and examine it from all angles.

While the satellite team was gone, another team using the same sort of cart went and removed all the bolts, apparently needing them themselves, and failed to properly document this.

The first team came back, and didn't verify that everything was still fine. They proceeded to rotate the cart from vertical to horizontal. The result:

Satellite fall down and go boom.

Damage is still uncertain, but likely to be extensive.


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