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The SpaceX Dragon Freedom crew ship, that delivered four Crew-4 astronauts to the International Space Station, is pictured docked to the Harmony module's space-facing port. Credit: NASA
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Improving Government Insight Through Independent Simulation of Key Flight Phases

For NASA programs using risk-based independent verification and validation (IV&V), detailed NASA-developed/supported simulation of key flight phases provides deeper government insight and certification ability.

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MIRI, ( Mid InfraRed Instrument ), flight instrument for the James Webb Space Telescope, JWST, during ambient temperature alignment testing in RAL Space's clean rooms at STFC's Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, 8th November 2010. Credit: Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC)
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Sharing Access to the Requirements Management Database for the Project

Shared use of a requirements management database with NASA contractors and partners greatly aids engineering collaboration and communication.

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A team from the Granular Mechanics and Regolith Operations Lab tests the Regolith Advanced Surface Systems Operations Robot (RASSOR) in the regolith bin inside Swamp Works at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida on June 5, 2019. Credit: NASA
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Design Verification Development

The likelihood of success increases if the group responsible for implementing design verification methods chosen early in a program’s life cycle is allowed to contribute to the selection process.

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Spotlight on Lessons Learned graphic with a photo of the ISOPAR-H Tank and TEA-TEB Fill Tank. Credit: NASA
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: E-1 Triethyl Aluminum-Triethyl Borane System Contamination

Mistake-proofing techniques built into system processes can aid in preventing human error when engineers and test operators make time-critical decisions in unique circumstances such as dangerous weather or limited supplies.

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System Expert Performing Analysis of a Thermal Protection System Tile. Credit: NASA
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Component Identification Procedures Used in the Columbia Accident Investigation

Procedures developed by the NASA community to identify, catalog, and inspect accident debris proved invaluable in the Space Shuttle Columbia accident investigation.

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Graphic showing the configuration of the MSL Descent Stage for the final mechanical walkdown. Credit: NASA
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Conduct a Final Mechanical Walkdown Prior to Spacecraft Integration with the Launch Vehicle

Independent mechanical walkdowns of spacecraft are sometimes credited with discovering discrepancies that could have interfered with mission success.

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This is one of a series of photos taken by the Expedition 34 crew members aboard the International Space Station during the March 3, 2013 approach, capture and docking of the SpaceX Dragon. Credit: NASA
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Lessons Learned from NASA’s Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) Program

NASA’s Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) Program provides a starting point for formulation, design, management, and implementation of future public-private capability development partnerships.

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An illustration of the Europa Clipper flying in space with Jupiter's moon Europa in the background. Credit: NASA
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Tube Stub Weld Design Change

Strong lines of communication between designers and analysts must be maintained to ensure fidelity of analysis results as flight component configurations evolve.

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The NASA Autonomous Flight Termination Unit. Credit: NASA
Spotlight on Lessons Learned: Static Software Analysis of the NASA Autonomous Flight Termination Software

A NASA Engineering and Safety Center assessment of the Autonomous Flight Termination System resulted in coding standard and software static analysis recommendations for software development teams.

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