2. Apollo 13 Debacle
The malfunction of Apollo 13’s mission service module caused an explosion during a routine tank stirring, which forced the astronauts to use the lunar module for oxygen, as it had quickly ran out in the service module. The mission to land on moon was immediately aborted and after many hardships and bravery the crew safely returned to earth. The mission was termed as a “successful failure”.
1. Glitch of the Millennium – 1983’s near WW3
Lt. Col. Stanislav Petrov prevented a nuclear holocaust in 1983 when he indentified an early-warning satellite system’s alarm as fake or mistaken. When the alarms went off in Moscow, the Russian satellites indicated that US had fired 5 ballistic missiles at Russia. But Petrov’s gut feeling rejected this because he thought that if US would ever attack, it wouldn’t be 5 missiles, it would have been dozens! Believe it or not, if he hadn’t acted right, the World we live in might not have been the same as it is now.
In fact, the Russian satellite system had picked up sun’s reflections off the cloud tops as missile launches.
Bonus: Steve Jobs and iPhone Wireless failure
Well, even the iPhone is prone to failures. Have a look.