Apollo, Challenger, Columbia Lessons Learned Program

NASA’s Apollo, Challenger, Columbia Lessons Learned Program (ACCLLP) shares the difficult lessons of the past to help ensure future mission success. NASA believes that by examining past mishaps, the agency — and others — can learn and improve to avoid recurrence. As the workforce continues to welcome new, fresh talent, it is of the utmost importance that these lessons are shared with new generations who did not experience them firsthand. The ACCLLP works to highlight common themes among past incidents in order to improve and strengthen the Safety Culture across the agency.


Michael Ciannilli

Mike Ciannilli

ACCLLP Program Manager

Learn more about Apollo, Challenger, Columbia Lessons Learned Program (ACCLLP) Manager Mike Ciannilli.

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The Apollo, Challenger, Columbia Lessons Learned Program creates and produces live broadcast and in-person event content. The program also collaborates with a wide array of media outlets and genres. A sample of the multimedia content follows.

Date Published Media Type Title Description Product
June 10, 2020 Video PMI Talent and Technology Virtual Symposium 2020 Columbia: Legacy and Lessons Learned See Video
Summer 2016 Article Space Shuttle Challenger 30th Commemoration Wall at Challenger Elementary School in Huntsville, Alabama Huntsville Alabama L5 Society See Article
Jan. 30, 2020 Video NASA EDGE: Apollo, Challenger, Columbia, Lessons Learned Program NASA EDGE sits down with Mike Ciannilli, Apollo, Challenger, Columbia Lessons Learned Program manager, to talk about how NASA is using the tragedies of the past to make sure we improve our processes moving forward
See Video
Oct. 7, 2020 Video NASA EDGE@Home with Mike Ciannilli Blair Allen talks with NASA’s Mike Ciannilli, Apollo, Challenger, Columbia Lessons Learned Program manager, about how NASA pays tribute and respect to its lost astronauts, and how NASA is working hard to learn from its own history to avoid tragedies and secure the safety of future missions See Video
July 29, 2020 Video Webinar Talk Show - Lessons Learned at NASA with Mike Ciannilli This episode is an in-depth conversation about learning from the past See Video
May 18, 2020 Video Space Coast Daily: NASA’s Mike Ciannilli Talks About First Manned Rocket Launch From U.S. Soil Since 2011 Mike Ciannilli, Apollo, Challenger, Columbia Lessons Learned Program manager, talks with Space Coast Daily’s Giles Malone about his experiences and his responsibilities for sharing the lessons of the past to help ensure future success
See Video
May 27, 2020 Video Space Coast Daily: Interview With Mike Ciannilli Mike Ciannilli, Apollo, Challenger, Columbia Lessons Learned Program manager, discusses the SpaceX Demo-2 manned spaceflight from Kennedy Space Center See Video
Dec 17, 2014
Video Masters with Masters 23 (Mike Ciannilli and Jon Cowart) On July 24, 2014, Mike Ciannilli, NASA test director; Jon Cowart, NASA Commercial Crew; and Ed Hoffman, NASA chief knowledge officer discuss stories from the Space Shuttle and Commercial Crew Programs  See Video
Aug. 3, 2011 Article Space Shuttle: Columbia Tank Found on Lakebed
Aug. 3, 2011: A newly discovered aluminum tank from space shuttle Columbia's STS-107 mission will be recovered from the shoreline of Lake Nacogdoches in east Texas and eventually will likely be made available to researchers as are other parts of the Columbia debris
See Article
Jan. 28, 2016 Article Lessons Learned from Challenger: Future of Space Travel Article and video on WTXL Tallahassee See Article
May 17, 2018 Article NASA whiteboards: Intimate look at art by astronauts' kids as mom, dad launched into space Article and video on Florida Today See Article
Feb. 9, 2018 Article Remembering Columbia, Over Fifteen Years Later Story from the National Air and Space Museum See Article
June 10, 2021 Podcast 123: NASA Lessons Learned with Mike Ciannilli Casual Space podcast Hear Podcast
Aug. 5, 2020 Podcast Moving Beyond Your Mistakes with a NASA Expert Digital Enterprise Society podcast Hear Podcast
April 2, 2019 Podcast Small Steps, Giant Leaps: Episode 7, Space Shuttle Columbia National Tour Small Steps, Giant Leaps podcast Hear Podcast
July 28, 2020 Podcast Lessons Learned at NASA with Mike Ciannilli Making Waves at C-Level podcast Hear Podcast
Feb. 25, 2020 Podcast Apollo Challenger Columbia Lessons Learned Program (ACCLLP) NASA Edge Audio Files podcast Hear Podcast
Nov. 30, 2021 Podcast Austin Sector Deep Dive: Space with with Melanie Stricklan, CEO Slingshot Aerospace & Michael Ciannilli NASA's Director of the Apollo, Challenger, Columbia Lessons Learned Program Austin Next podcast Hear Podcast 
April 3, 2019 Podcast Episode 07: Space Shuttle Columbia National Tour APPEL Knowledge Services podcast Hear Podcast
April 9, 2020 Podcast The Challenge to Succeed Center Stage: The Project Economy podcast series Hear Podcast
Jan. 30, 2020 Article NASA EDGE: Apollo, Challenger, Columbia Lessons Learned Program Interview between NASA EDGE and Mike Ciannilli of the Apollo, Challenger, Columbia Lessons Learned Program See Article
Jan. 28, 2022 Article How NASA Has Made Space Travel Safer Since Challenger Newsweek Tech & Science piece See Article
Dec. 19, 2017 Article Lessons Learned Program Covers Past, Focuses on the Future NASA overview article on program See Article
Dec. 16, 2019 Article Learning Lessons From Mistakes Article on the Payload Blog See Article
Feb. 1, 2018 Article Debris from fallen space shuttle Columbia has new mission 15 years after tragedy Collect Space piece See Article
June 10, 2014  Article Living With Columbia: Interview With Mike Ciannilli Article from Space Safety Magazine See Article
June 8, 2021 Book The Burning Blue: The Untold Story of Christa McAuliffe and NASA's The Challenger Disaster Written by Kevin Cook See Book on Amazon
July 1, 2015 Article ‘Forever Remembered’ Exhibit Honoring Challenger and Columbia Opens at Kennedy Space Center Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex news release See Article
Jan. 26, 2016 Article Shuttle Challenger tragedy: What lessons were learned? Article in the Orlando Sentinel See Article
Nov. 10, 2017 Website Bringing Columbia Home Web resource, including information on the book “Bringing Columbia Home” See Article

Explore Collaboration With ACCLLP

The Apollo, Challenger, Columbia Lessons Learned Program (ACCLLP) strongly encourages and welcomes the exploration of collaboration opportunities with organization both inside and outside of NASA. To inquire more, please contact ACCLLP Manager Michael Ciannilli.

Contact Ciannilli

Apollo 1

Apollo 1 website coming soon.


Apollo 13

Apollo 13 website coming soon.



Challenger website coming soon.



On Feb. 1, 2003, at the completion of Columbia’s 28th mission, the Columbia and her crew — commander Rick Husband; pilot William McCool; mission specialists David Brown, Kalpana Chawla, Michael Anderson, and Laurel Clark; and payload specialist Ilan Ramon — headed back to Earth. Sixteen minutes from home, the space shuttle broke apart during reentry into Earth's atmosphere.

The Columbia (STS1-107) page is a full-picture look at Columbia information and resources from a variety of organizations.

Visit Columbia Page