Piece of doomed Shuttle Columbia discovered in drought dried lake

It's been less than two weeks since the Space Shuttle program officially ended, but today we got a sad reminder of one of the Shuttle's darkest days.

This four foot wide orb provided oxygen and water to the crew of Shuttle Columbia, until it disintegrated during re-entry on February 1 2003. Most of Columbia was never recovered, although some 40,000 mostly tiny pieces were found scattered over parts of East Texas.

The orb fell into Lake Nacogdoches, where it lay undiscovered under the water until the recent drought substantially lowered the water level. Apart from one set of wheels, this is expected the be the largest piece of Columbia yet discovered.

NASA says they plan to retrieve the orb so it can join the other recovered pieces of Columbia at the Kennedy Space Center.


For the latest tech stories, follow us on Twitter at @dvice