Challenger limps into a low orbit as an engine fails 30 years ago this hour (July 29 1985)

Video: 'STS-51F launch, abort & landing (7-29-85)'

(Monday, July 29, 1985, 21:00:00 UTC) — The space shuttle Challenger began an 8-day mission today that got off to a shaky start: the spacecraft achieved a safe orbit even though one of its main engines shut down prematurely after lift-off.

It was the first major malfunction during ascent in the 19 flights of the shuttle program.

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