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Case study: Group Process in the Challenger Launch Decision

Subject: Consumer Behavior

Paper Model: APA

Paper Type: Assignment

Total Words: 1383

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Question 1: External environment of NASA and potential impact on people involved in-group decision making

Question 2: Roger Boisjoly stance over the launch of the shuttle


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Question 1: External environment of NASA and potential impact on people involved in-group decision making

            Nasa faced various environmental challenges for launching of Challenger shuttle. Nasa was preliminary established for space exploration programs for civilians. However, later on organization was engaged in space program to gain space exploration dominance over Soviet Union. SWOT analysis is essential to come up with strength, weakness, opportunities and strength of the NASA. Environmental analysis will facilitate to determine potential impact on people involved in a group decision making.

            NASA has sufficient funding from congress since 1969, which is considered as opportunity for the organization to continue its space program. Funding was given even during the Vietnam War. Government had decided not to compromise on funding which might affect adversely on space program. Technological advancement of Nasa was able to establish permanent space program in the space. This was the major strength of the organization. Moreover, contract for building SRBs $100 million was lower than its competitors, which included Aerojet solid propulsion company, Lockheed Propulsion Corporation and United technologies.

            Major weakness for the company was lack of capabilities in effective design for solid fuel rocket model. However, problems of O-rings continued, which later on resulted in shuttle disaster. Major threat for the company came from the Soviet Union. Space race with Soviet Union was a major threat as it could win the space race. NASA has limited time to establish its space shuttle programs to remain ahead in space race. All such factors affected people who were included in the meeting. They might alter their decision regarding to launch the shuttle depending on the feasibility with respect to environmental factors.

Question 2: Roger Boisjoly stance over the launch of the shuttle

            Roger Boisjoly was a member of Seal Task Force. He presented his viewpoint on weather conditions to launch the shuttle. He proposed that launching the shuttle at below temperature of 29 degrees is critical decision. He further proposed that cold hardened sealing would be slow in sealing. Temperature will affect them badly. Moreover, such factor could result in leakage of primary seal. Danger of increased back up of O-ring could be exploded.

            His personal recommendation for shuttle launch on 53 degree may blow up the shuttle. The temperature was extremely cold at that time. He referred about flight 15. At that temperature, he witnessed that O-ring erosion blew in both boosters. This means that gases went right, past the ring and did not erode it and not possible to shine. This reading was based on his personal analysis. Launching the shuttle with the consideration of temperature was dangerous.


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