In 2020, SpaceX and NASA launched two astronauts into space – the first manned launch from US soil since the Space Shuttle Program’s retirement in 2011. The Commercial Crew Program was a resounding success, but it almost didn’t happen.
During pre-launch testing, one of the new space capsules exploded. SpaceX and NASA called together a panel of experts to find out what went wrong and how to safely resume the program.
The assembled team included Dr. Harold Beeson and Joe Whitehead, both employees of WHA International Inc., a specialized engineering firm based in Las Cruces, New Mexico. In 2021, NASA presented a Space Flight Awareness (SFA) Team Award to the special group that directly contributed to the success of the Commercial Crew Program.
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