GALLEY OF THE ROGERS COMMISSION'S RECOMMENDATIONS AFTER THE CHALLENGER DISASTER, SIGNED BY COMMISSION MEMBER AND NOBEL PRIZE-WINNING PHYSICIST RICHARD FEYNMAN
FEYNMAN, Richard P. Recommendations. No place: No publisher, circa 1986. Five sheets of mimeographed paper, each measuring 8-1/2 by 14 inches, stapled at top corner; pp. 5. $22,500.
Mimeograph of the galleys of the Recommendations of the Rogers Commission tasked with investigating the Challenger disaster, signed on the front page by Nobel Prize-winning physicist Richard Feynman with his additional note: "PRIVATE (CLOSE HOLD)."
The Rogers Commission was formed in the aftermath of the Challenger disaster to investigate the reasons behind the space shuttle's explosion. Richard Feynman was in the final months of his life and reluctantly accepted the appointment to the Commission, despite believing it would "ruin [his] life." Feynman was consumed by the investigation, painstakingly analyzing the evidence and eventually reaching a conclusion that exposed systemic problems at NASA that extended well beyond the Challenger. Feynman harshly criticized the culture of NASA, from its poor decision-making to its excessive risk tolerance. This galley of the Commission's ultimate recommendations, ironically, takes a more moderated approach. It begins by recommending that the design of the Solid Rocket Motor joint and seal (the infamous O-rings) be improved and goes on to suggest changes to NASA bureaucracy and oversight. This report, unlike Feynman's minority report, "strongly recommends that NASA continue to receive the support of the Administration and the nation." Small notation in an unidentified hand above Feynman's signature reading: "1st gally [sic] 9:45 5/26." This item was formerly the property of the Feynman family.
Original folding creases. Fine condition.