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The Orbiting Carbon Observatory, or OCO, was designed to make space-based observations of carbon dioxide in Earth's atmosphere to better understand the characteristics of climate change. This illustration shows the OCO-1 satellite in space, with Earth in the background. Credit: NASA
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Orbiting Carbon Observatory Launch Vehicle Mishap Investigation Results

Failure of a launch vehicle payload fairing to separate during ascent resulted in the loss of the Orbiting Carbon Observatory satellite mission.

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Spotlight on Lessons Learned: System / Facility Impedance Checks

Impedance compatibility problems between test facilities and electronics hardware can result in damage or failure.

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This illustration shows a CubeSat scanning and mapping an asteroid. Credit: NASA
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Open-Source and Commercial Web Software Vulnerabilities

Projects that use commercial web software should take proactive measures to mitigate IT security risks.

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Here, Canadian Space Agency astronaut Chris Hadfield prepares to set up the ISERV in the Destiny module of the International Space Center. Credit: NASA
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Program Management of ISERV Design, Development, and Qualification Class D Hardware Integration

Specific events and obstacles encountered during the design and development of the ISERV payload provide the basis of an applicable program management lesson learned.

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Surface Mount Battery
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Button Battery Power Supply Issue

An issue with a button battery holder appears to be the cause of an unplanned reset of the Real-Time Clock on the International Space Station Urine Processing Assembly.

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Illustration of the Aquarius/Satélite de Aplicaciones Científicas (SAC)-D satellite observatory in space with Earth in the background. Credit: NASA
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: SAC-D DC/DC Converter On-orbit Failures Likely due to Over-testing Prior to Usage

An international Earth-observing mission to study the salinity of the ocean surface ended in 2015 when an essential part of the spacecraft’s power and attitude control system stopped operating due to over-testing prior to launch. 

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Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Electrical Short Circuits due to Tin Whiskers

An investigation into the cause of intermittent electrical shorts on the Cassini space probe over a six-year period determined they were most likely due to the presence of tin whiskers. 

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Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Cable Harness Wiring and Connector Anomalies Caused by Induced Damage in Human Spaceflight Vehicles

NASA has discovered wiring damage issues in every crewed vehicle system, but early indications suggest the new generation of vehicles appears to benefit from more simplified designs and lower technician traffic during integration.

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Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Incorporating Human Factors from the Beginning of a Program/Project

Employing qualified human factors personnel on a design team from the start of a program or project has proven to be successful and effective.

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