NASA has released a report discussing the demise of the Genesis space probe. A set of gravity switches installed backwards did the space probe in as it re-entered the earth's atmosphere on September 8, 2004. Genesis was designed to collect solar wind atoms and return the samples back to earth after a 3-year mission. Because of the flawed switches, the Genesis crash landed on its re-entry. The container housing the samples cracked thereby exposing its payload to contamination.
The Genesis was launched on August 8, 2001 and began collecting samples on December of that year.
Photo credit: Caltech/NASA