National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Trial by Fire

Space Station Mir: On-Board Fire

On Feb. 24, 1997, six crew members on Mir Space Station faced significant danger when fire ignited in the solid fuel oxygen generator. The searing flame, which erupted from a fuel cartridge, cut off access to one of two Soyuz escape capsules. The module's narrow space made it difficult to fight the fire, but with teamwork and composure, the crew prevailed. Although the incident would raise tensions between the teams on the ground and on orbit, both sides would learn valuable lessons applicable to the design of the International Space Station.