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Encyclopedia > Apollo 13
Apollo 13
Mission insignia
Mission statistics[1]
Mission name Apollo 13
Command Module CM-109
callsign Odyssey
mass 28,945 kg
Service Module SM-109
Lunar Module LM-7
callsign Aquarius
mass 15,235 kg
Crew size 3
Booster Saturn V SA-508
Launch pad LC 39A
Kennedy Space Center
Florida, USA
Launch date April 11, 1970
19:13:00 UTC
Lunar landing
Cancelled due to onboard explosion
Number of lunar orbits 0[2]
Landing April 17, 1970
18:07:41 UTC
21°38′24, S°165′21
Mission duration 5 d 22 h 54 m 41 s
Crew photo
Left to right: Lovell, Swigert, Haise
Related missions
Previous mission Next mission
Apollo 12 Apollo 14
Original crew photo.Left to right: Lovell, Mattingly, Haise.
Original crew photo.
Left to right: Lovell, Mattingly, Haise.

Apollo 13 was the third manned lunar-landing mission, part of Project Apollo under NASA in the United States. The crew members were Commander James A. Lovell, Command Module pilot John L. "Jack" Swigert, and Lunar Module pilot Fred W. Haise. It launched on April 11, 1970 at 2:13 EST. Two days after the launch, the Apollo spacecraft was crippled by an explosion, caused by a fault in an oxygen tank. The explosion damaged the Service Module, resulting in a loss of oxygen and electrical power. The crew used the Lunar Module as a “lifeboat” in space. The command module remained fully functional on its internal batteries, but they were needed for re-entry and landing so it was shut down shortly after the accident. Despite great hardship caused by severe constraints on power, cabin heat, and potable water, the crew successfully returned to Earth. The mission was thus called a "Successful Failure".[3] Apollo 13 is a 1995 film portrayal of the ill-fated Apollo 13 lunar mission in 1970. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 603 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (759 × 755 pixel, file size: 840 KB, MIME type: image/png) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Apollo 13 Jim Lovell Jack Swigert... The Command/Service Module (CSM) was a spacecraft built for NASA by North American Aviation. ... The Command/Service Module (CSM) was a spacecraft built for NASA by North American Aviation. ... The LEM flight instrumentation panel and front windows. ... For the moon designated Saturn V, see Rhea. ... Launch Complex 39 is a large site and a collection of facilities at the John F. Kennedy Space Center on Merritt Island in Florida, USA, originally built for the Apollo program, and later modified to support Space Shuttle operations. ... Merritt Island and Kennedy Space Center (shown in white). ... This article is about the U.S. State of Florida. ... is the 101st day of the year (102nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1970 (MCMLXX) was a common year starting on Thursday (link shows full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... UTC redirects here. ... is the 107th day of the year (108th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1970 (MCMLXX) was a common year starting on Thursday (link shows full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Apollo 13 crew: Lovell, Swigert, Haise. ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (759x756, 1013 KB)[1] File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Apollo 12 was the sixth manned mission in the Apollo program and the second to land on the Moon. ... Apollo 14 was the eighth manned mission in the Apollo program and the third mission to land on the Moon. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 714 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (800 × 672 pixel, file size: 126 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg)The Original Crew for Apollo 13. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 714 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (800 × 672 pixel, file size: 126 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg)The Original Crew for Apollo 13. ... Project Apollo was a series of human spaceflight missions undertaken by the United States of America (NASA) using the Apollo spacecraft and Saturn launch vehicle, conducted during the years 1961 – 1975. ... For other uses, see NASA (disambiguation). ... Captain James Jim Arthur Lovell, Jr. ... John Leonard Jack Swigert, Jr. ... Fred Wallace Haise, Jr. ... is the 101st day of the year (102nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1970 (MCMLXX) was a common year starting on Thursday (link shows full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Command/Service Module (CSM) was a spacecraft built for NASA by North American Aviation. ... Description Role: Lunar landing Crew: 2; CDR, LM pilot Dimensions Height: 20. ... Description Role: Earth and Lunar Orbit Crew: 3; CDR, CM pilot, LM pilot Dimensions Height: 36. ...

Contents

Crew

Number in parentheses indicates number of spaceflights by each individual prior to and including this mission.

Ken Mattingly was originally slated to be the Command Module pilot. After being exposed to rubella (German measles) – a disease to which Mattingly was not immune – contracted by backup Lunar Module pilot Charles Duke, Mattingly was grounded shortly before launch. He was replaced by Jack Swigert, and later flew with the Apollo 13 backup crew as CMP of Apollo 16. Mattingly never contracted rubella. Captain James Jim Arthur Lovell, Jr. ... John Leonard Jack Swigert, Jr. ... Fred Wallace Haise, Jr. ... Thomas Kenneth Ken Mattingly II, Rear Admiral, USN (retired) (born March 17, 1936) is an American who as an astronaut flew on the Apollo 16, STS-4, and STS-51-C missions. ... Charles Moss Duke, Jr. ... Apollo 16 was the tenth manned mission in the Apollo program and the fifth mission to land on the Moon. ...


Backup crew

John Watts Young (born September 24, 1930) is a former NASA astronaut who walked on the Moon on Apollo 16, April 21, 1972. ... John Leonard Jack Swigert, Jr. ... Charles Moss Duke, Jr. ...

Support crew

Vance DeVoe Brand (born May 9, 1931) is a former NASA astronaut. ... Jack Robert Lousma (born February 29, 1936) is a former NASA astronaut. ... Joseph Peter Kerwin, M.D. (Captain, MC, USN, Ret. ...

Flight directors

Gene Kranz Eugene Francis Gene Kranz (born 17 August 1933) is a retired NASA flight director and manager. ... Glynn S. Lunney (born November 27, 1936) is a retired NASA engineer. ...

Mission parameters

For other uses, see Mass (disambiguation). ... Perigee is the point at which an object in orbit around the Earth makes its closest approach to the Earth. ... This article is about several astronomical terms (apogee & perigee, aphelion & perihelion, generic equivalents based on apsis, and related but rarer terms. ... For the science fiction novella by William Shunn, see Inclination (novella). ... The orbital period is the time it takes a planet (or another object) to make one full orbit. ...

Oxygen tank explosion

is the 104th day of the year (105th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1970 (MCMLXX) was a common year starting on Thursday (link shows full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... ... EST or Est or est may stand for: Est or Erhard Seminars Training, a New Age Large Group Awareness Training seminar program est in French, meaning east, as in referring to France and to the Franche-Comté and Lorraine régions Eastern Standard Time - three separate time zones use this... is the 103rd day of the year (104th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1970 (MCMLXX) was a common year starting on Thursday (link shows full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... This article is about Earth as a planet. ...

Closest approach to Moon

is the 105th day of the year (106th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1970 (MCMLXX) was a common year starting on Thursday (link shows full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ...

Mission highlights

The Apollo 13 mission was scheduled to explore the Fra Mauro formation, or Fra Mauro highlands, named after the 80-kilometer-diameter Fra Mauro crater, located within it. It is a widespread, hilly geological (or more properly, selenological) area covering large portions of the lunar surface around Mare Imbrium, and is thought to be composed of ejecta from the impact which formed the mare. With the failure of the mission, the flight to Fra Mauro was done on Apollo 14. The Fra Mauro formation (or Frau Mauro Highlands) on the Moon is the location of the Apollo 14 landing site. ... Fra Mauro is the worn remnant of a walled lunar plain. ... For other moons in the solar system see natural satellite. ... Oblique view of Mare Imbrium looking south towards Copernicus crater. ... Apollo 14 was the eighth manned mission in the Apollo program and the third mission to land on the Moon. ...


The flight's problems began during the liftoff with a lesser-known malfunction: during the second-stage burn, the center engine shut down two minutes early. The four outer engines were run for longer than planned, to compensate for this.[5] Engineers later discovered that this was due to dangerous pogo oscillations which might have torn the second stage apart; the engine was experiencing 68g vibrations at 16 hertz, flexing the thrust frame by 3 inches (76 mm). However, the oscillations caused a sensor to register excessively low average pressure, and the computer shut the engine down automatically.[6] Smaller pogo oscillations had been seen on previous Apollo missions (and had been recognized as a potential problem from the earliest unmanned Titan-Gemini flights), but on Apollo 13 they had been amplified by an unexpected interaction with the cavitation in the turbo-pumps.[7] Later missions included anti-pogo modifications, which had been under development since before Apollo 13. Those modifications solved the problem. They entailed (a) the addition of a helium gas reservoir in the center engine’s liquid oxygen line to dampen pressure oscillations, (b) an automatic cutoff for the center engine in case this failed, and (c) simplified propellant valves on all five second-stage engines. Pogo oscillation is the term for a potentially dangerous type of oscillation found in rocket engines. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


Explosion

Apollo 13 damaged Service Module as photographed from the Command Module after being jettisoned.
Apollo 13 damaged Service Module as photographed from the Command Module after being jettisoned.

As the spacecraft was on its way to the Moon, at a distance of 321,860 kilometers (199,990 mi) from Earth, the number two oxygen tank, one of two tanks contained in the Service Module (SM), exploded. (It is important to note that the report of the Apollo 13 review board does not refer to this incident as an "explosion", instead detailing how the oxygen tanks were designed with rupture disks and other safeties to prevent a catastrophic explosion.) Image File history File links Size of this preview: 369 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (1321 × 2145 pixel, file size: 295 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Fotografía del Módulo de comando dañado. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 369 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (1321 × 2145 pixel, file size: 295 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Fotografía del Módulo de comando dañado. ... An oxygen tank is a storage vessel for oxygen, which is either held under pressure in gas cylinders or as liquid oxygen in a cryogenic storage tank. ... A spacecrafts service module is a compartment containing a variety of support systems used for spacecraft operations, but not any habitable area. ...

"Houston, we've had a problem." Image File history File links Houston_problem. ...

Swigert and Lovell reporting the explosion on 13 April 1970
Problems listening to the file? See media help.

Mission Control had requested that the crew stir the oxygen tanks, a task required to prevent the oxygen ‘slush’ from stratifying. The Teflon-insulated wires that provided electricity to the stirrer motor were damaged, causing a large fire when electricity was passed through them. The fire heated the surrounding oxygen, increasing the pressure inside the tank above its nominal 1,000 PSI (7 MPa) limit, and causing the tank to explode. The cause of the explosion was unknown at the time, however, and the crew and Houston conjectured that a meteoroid had struck the SM or even the Lunar Module (LM). An aerial view of the Johnson Space Center facility of Houston in 1989 The Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center (JSC) is the National Aeronautics and Space Administrations center for human spaceflight activities. ... Atmospheric stratification is the division of the atmosphere into distinct layers, each with specific properties such as temperature or humidity. ... In chemistry, polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) is a synthetic fluoropolymer which finds numerous applications. ... A pressure gauge reading in PSI (red scale) and kPa (black scale) The pound-force per square inch (symbol: lbf/in²) is a non-SI unit of pressure based on avoirdupois units. ... MPA is a TLA (three-letter acronym) that may mean: Macedonian Press Agency Marine Protected Area Maritime Patrol Aircraft Maryland and Pennsylvania Railroad (AAR reporting mark MPA) Master of Public Administration Master of Public Affairs Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics Metropolitan Police Authority Mid-atlantic Pagan Alliance Motion Picture Association... Meteor redirects here. ... The LEM flight instrumentation panel and front windows. ...


This explosion caused damage to other parts of the Service Module, including, critically, the number one oxygen tank. Because the Command/Service Module (CSM) relied on the oxygen tanks to generate electricity, damage to number one tank meant that very little power was available for the spacecraft. The Command Module (CM) contained batteries for use during re-entry after the SM was jettisoned, but these would only last about ten hours. Because this power needed to be saved for re-entry, the crew survived by using the LM, still attached to the CSM, as a "lifeboat". The LM "lifeboat" procedure had actually been created during a training simulation (in the simulator) not long before the flight of Apollo 13.[8] The Command/Service Module (CSM) was a spacecraft built for NASA by North American Aviation. ... Description Role: Earth and Lunar Orbit Crew: 3; CDR, CM pilot, LM pilot Dimensions Height: 36. ...

The Lunar Module "Aquarius," which served as the crew's lifeboat, is jettisoned as they near earth
The Lunar Module "Aquarius," which served as the crew's lifeboat, is jettisoned as they near earth

The damage done to the CSM meant that the planned Moon-landing at the Fra Mauro Highlands had to be scrubbed. To return the crew to Earth as quickly and safely as possible, only a single pass around the Moon was made, in what is called a free return trajectory, which uses the Moon's gravity to "slingshot" the spacecraft back to Earth. To enter this trajectory, a significant course correction was required. This would normally have been a simple procedure, using the SM propulsion engine, but the flight controllers did not know exactly how much damage the service module had taken, and did not want to risk firing the main engine. Therefore the course correction was performed by firing the LM's descent engine, an option settled upon after extensive discussion among the engineers on the ground. The initial maneuver to change to a free return trajectory was made within hours of the accident. After passage around the Moon, the descent engine was fired again for a PC+2 burn (PeriCynthion + 2 hours) in order to accelerate the spacecraft's return to Earth. Afterwards, only one more descent engine burn was required, for a minor course correction. The Fra Mauro formation (or Frau Mauro Highlands) on the Moon is the location of the Apollo 14 landing site. ... This article is about Earths moon. ... A free return trajectory is one of a very small sub-class of trajectories in which the trajectory of a satellite traveling away from a primary body (for example, the Earth) is modified by the presence of a secondary body (for example, the Moon) causing the satellite to return to... This article is about Earth as a planet. ... A remote camera captures a close-up view of a Space Shuttle Main Engine during a test firing at the John C. Stennis Space Center in Hancock County, Mississippi Spacecraft propulsion is any method used to change the velocity of spacecraft and artificial satellites. ... Flight controller: a space flight control room position at NASAs Mission Control Center. ... A diagram of Keplerian orbital elements. ...


Considerable ingenuity under extreme pressure was required from both the crew and the flight controllers to work out how to jury rig the craft for the crew's safe return, with much of the world watching the developing drama on television. (Because of the severe electrical power limitations following the explosion, no live TV broadcasts were made from the craft for the remainder of the mission; network commentators used models and animated footage to illustrate their coverage). Flight controller: a space flight control room position at NASAs Mission Control Center. ... Jury rigging (or jerry rigging) refers to makeshift repairs or substitutes, made with only the tools and materials that happen to be on hand. ...

Interior of the Lunar Module, showing the "mailbox" built to adapt the Command Module's Lithium Hydroxide canisters to fit the LM's environmental systems.
Interior of the Lunar Module, showing the "mailbox" built to adapt the Command Module's Lithium Hydroxide canisters to fit the LM's environmental systems.

A major challenge in keeping the crew alive was that the LM "lifeboat" was only equipped to sustain two people for two days, but had to sustain three people for four days, an increase of a factor of three. The lithium hydroxide canisters available for the LM's carbon dioxide scrubbers would not last for all four days. The CM had an adequate supply of replacement canisters, but they were the wrong shape to fit the LM's receptacle. An adapter then had to be fabricated from materials in the spacecraft. The astronauts called it the "mailbox."[9] Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (2734x2362, 7121 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Apollo 13 ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (2734x2362, 7121 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Apollo 13 ... Description Role: Lunar landing Crew: 2; CDR, LM pilot Dimensions Height: 20. ... Description Role: Earth and Lunar Orbit Crew: 3; CDR, CM pilot, LM pilot Dimensions Height: 36. ... Lithium hydroxide (LiOH) is a corrosive alkali. ...

The "mailbox" at Mission Control during the Apollo 13 mission.

Due to reduced temperatures on the return leg of the mission, there was extensive water condensation in the CM. There was some fear that this condensation could seriously damage the electronics of the Command Module by causing a short circuit. Until the electronics were activated, it was impossible to know whether this would occur. The equipment worked normally when activated, however, partly due to the extensive design modifications made to the CM after the fire aboard Apollo 1. Mission Control Center (MCC) is a unit that manages aerospace flights. ... Italics indicate parameters for the planned mission canceled following the Jan 27 fire. ...


As the time for re-entry into Earth's atmosphere approached, NASA took the unusual step of jettisoning the Service Module before the Lunar Module, so pictures of the SM could be taken for later analysis. When the crew saw the damaged service module, they reported that the access panel covering the oxygen tanks and fuel cells, which extended the entire length of the Module's body, had been blown off.

Apollo 13's successful splashdown
Apollo 13's successful splashdown
Command module being loaded onto deck of the USS Iwo Jima
Command module being loaded onto deck of the USS Iwo Jima

The crew returned unharmed to Earth, although Haise had a urinary tract infection, as a result of the scarcity of potable water on the damaged ship and the difficulty of urine disposal. (The crew was instructed to store urine and other waste products on board instead of dumping them into space, to avoid altering the trajectory of the spacecraft.)[10] Download high resolution version (640x640, 463 KB)Apollo 13s successful splashdown after a harrowing trip. ... Download high resolution version (640x640, 463 KB)Apollo 13s successful splashdown after a harrowing trip. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 600 × 600 pixel Image in higher resolution (1500 × 1500 pixel, file size: 2. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 600 × 600 pixel Image in higher resolution (1500 × 1500 pixel, file size: 2. ... The Command/Service Module (CSM) was a spacecraft built for NASA by North American Aviation. ... USS Iwo Jima (LPH-2) was the lead ship of her class—the first ship to be designed and built from the keel up as an amphibious assault ship. ... A urinary tract infection (UTI) is a bacterial infection that affects any part of the urinary tract. ...


Although the explosion forced the mission to be aborted, the crew was fortunate that it occurred on the first leg of the mission, when they had maximum of supplies, equipment, and power. If the explosion had occurred while in orbit around the Moon or on the return leg after the LM had been jettisoned, the crew would have had a significantly smaller probability of survival.


Ironically, the crew's lives may have been saved by another failure in the oxygen tanks. At around 46 hours and 40 minutes into the mission, the oxygen tank 2 quantity gauge went "off-scale high" (reading over 100%) and stayed there. As a result of this failure, and to assist in determining the cause, the crew was asked to perform cryo-tank stirs more often than originally planned. In the original mission plan, the stir which blew out the tank would have occurred after the lunar landing.[11]


Cause of the accident

The crew of Apollo 13 onboard the USS Iwo Jima following splashdown
The crew of Apollo 13 onboard the USS Iwo Jima following splashdown

The explosion on Apollo 13 led to a lengthy investigation of the underlying cause. Based on detailed manufacturing records and logs of mission problems, the oxygen tank failure was tracked to a combination of multiple faults. Individually, they were not critical problems; but together they led to near disaster for Apollo 13. Image File history File links Apollo_13_crew_postmission_onboard_USS_Iwo_Jima. ... Image File history File links Apollo_13_crew_postmission_onboard_USS_Iwo_Jima. ... USS Iwo Jima (LPH-2) was the lead ship of her class—the first ship to be designed and built from the keel up as an amphibious assault ship. ...


Cryogens, such as liquid oxygen or liquid hydrogen, require great care in handling, and most storage containers holding them are unsealed so that pressure from expanding gas will not cause the container to fail. The Apollo’s liquid oxygen tanks were made capable of safely holding liquid oxygen at supercritical pressures for years before it evaporated, because of their design and insulation. Each tank was able to hold several hundred pounds of the highly pressurized liquid to supply the craft with oxygen, fuel for electricity, and water from the byproducts of the fuel cells. However, the very characteristics that made the tank useful made internal inspection impossible. Cryogenics is the study of very low temperatures or the production of the same, and is often confused with cryobiology, the study of the effect of low temperatures on organisms, or the study of cryopreservation. ... A supercritical fluid is any substance at a temperature and pressure above its thermodynamic critical point. ... Electricity (from New Latin Ä“lectricus, amberlike) is a general term for a variety of phenomena resulting from the presence and flow of electric charge. ... A fuel cell is an electrochemical device similar to a battery, but differing from the latter in that it is designed for continuous replenishment of the reactants consumed; i. ...


The tank was made of several basic components that were relevant to the accident:

  • a thermostat to control the heater within the tank, used to speed the evaporation of the liquid into gas;
  • a thermometer to determine the temperature of the heater;
  • valves and piping that were designed to allow the tank to be completely emptied of liquid, by forcing gas into the tank;
  • an interior coating of Teflon that protected the wiring from the extremely cold gas; and
  • an internal fan to stir the liquid oxygen (which will turn into a “slush” at these pressures if it is allowed to sit for a long period of time).

These were the basic design, manufacturing, and operational problems that led to the accident: Bi-metallic thermostat for buildings A thermostat is a device for regulating the temperature of a system so that the systems temperature is maintained near a desired setpoint temperature. ... A clinical mercury thermometer A thermometer is a device that measures temperature or temperature gradient, using a variety of different principles. ... In chemistry, polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) is a synthetic fluoropolymer which finds numerous applications. ...

  • The thermostat was originally designed to handle the 28-volt supply that would be used in the command module. However, the specification for the tank was changed, so that it had to handle 65 volts on the launch pad. Most of the wiring was changed to handle the higher voltage, but the thermostat was not. Engineers at Saturn V subcontractor Beechcraft later admitted they knew they had put 65 volts on a line designed for only 28 volts. The tank then made it into the Apollo 13 Service Module which crippled the mission.
  • The thermometer was designed to read out at the highest operational temperature of the heater, about 100 °F (38 °C). As a result, higher temperatures registered at only 100 °F (38 °C). At the time, this was not an issue, because the thermostat was supposed to cut out at 80 °F (27 °C), making higher temperatures impossible.
  • The oxygen shelf carrying oxygen tanks no. 1 and 2 was originally destined to fly in the Apollo 10 mission. Due to potential electro-magnetic interference problems, it was removed from Apollo 10. During removal, the shelf was accelerated upwards then dropped a distance of about 2 inches (5 cm). The exterior was undamaged, but calculations of the force of the impact showed that a loosely fitting filling tube could have been displaced by this event. In addition, photographs suggested that the close-out cap on top of tank no. 2 may have hit the fuel cell shelf (installed above the oxygen shelf) during the initial upward acceleration. The report of the Apollo 13 review board considers the probability of tank damage during this incident to be "rather low".
  • For ground-testing, the tank was filled. However, when it came time to empty it, the problem with the piping was discovered. As such, the tank could not be properly emptied except by running the heater to evaporate the liquid gas. Not using this tank would have delayed the mission, and there was no alternate tank available. Lovell was aware of the decision to use the heater to evaporate the oxygen, which was calculated to take a few days at the highest operational temperature of 80 °F (27 °C).
  • However, when the heater was turned on continuously:
    • The higher 65-volt supply fused the thermostat, which was only designed to handle 28 volts.
    • This malfunction eliminated the thermostat's ability to switch off the heater, which in turn allowed the heater to keep heating up past 80 °F (27 °C), and eventually past 100 °F (38 °C).
    • The electrical current recorder in the power supply showed that the heater was not cycling on and off, as it should have been if the thermostat was functioning correctly, but no one noticed it at the time.
    • Because the thermometer could not register temperatures higher than 100 °F (38 °C), the monitoring equipment did not register the true temperature inside the tank -- an estimated 800 degrees Fahrenheit (430 °C).[citation needed] Instead of taking several days, the gas evaporated in hours.
    • The protracted high temperatures then burned off the Teflon coating, leaving the wires inside the tank exposed.
  • When the tank was refilled with oxygen, it became a bomb waiting to go off. During the "cryo stir" procedure, the electricity needed to run the fans passed through the exposed wires inside the tank, setting off sparks which led to the explosion.
  • The close proximity of the two oxygen tanks exacerbated the situation. Although the remaining tank survived the explosion, its valves were damaged, allowing the oxygen within to leak out. In subsequent Apollo missions, the two oxygen tanks were situated farther apart, while a third tank was installed in an isolated location.

Josephson junction array chip developed by NIST as a standard volt. ... Josephson junction array chip developed by NIST as a standard volt. ... The Beech Aircraft Corporation, purchased by Raytheon Aircraft on February 8, 1980, and often called Beechcraft after the name they give their aircraft, is a manufacturer of general aviation and military aircraft, ranging from light single engine aircraft to business jets and light military transports. ... Apollo 10 was the fourth manned mission in the Apollo program, and the first (and only manned Saturn V) mission to launch from pad 39B. The mission included the second crew to orbit the Moon, and the test of the lunar module in lunar orbit. ... Apollo 10 was the fourth manned mission in the Apollo program, and the first (and only manned Saturn V) mission to launch from pad 39B. The mission included the second crew to orbit the Moon, and the test of the lunar module in lunar orbit. ... Josephson junction array chip developed by NIST as a standard volt. ... Josephson junction array chip developed by NIST as a standard volt. ... In chemistry, polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) is a synthetic fluoropolymer which finds numerous applications. ...

Mission notes

Following the established protocol for crew rotation on Apollo missions the original prime crew for Apollo 13 was the back up crew for Apollo 10 that would have seen Mercury veteran Gordon Cooper command the mission with Lovell's crew being Apollo 14. Deke Slayton bumped Cooper from the position in favor of Alan Shepard who had only recently returned to flight status following illness. In a change from the usual procedure, the prime crews of 13 and 14 were swapped, to afford Shepard more time to prepare. Apollo 10 was the fourth manned mission in the Apollo program, and the first (and only manned Saturn V) mission to launch from pad 39B. The mission included the second crew to orbit the Moon, and the test of the lunar module in lunar orbit. ... Apollo 14 was the eighth manned mission in the Apollo program and the third mission to land on the Moon. ... Donald Kent Deke Slayton (March 1, 1924 – June 13, 1993) was one of the original Mercury Seven NASA astronauts. ... For other persons named Alan Shepard, see Alan Shepard (disambiguation). ...


Two days before the launch, backup Lunar Module pilot Charlie Duke contracted rubella (German measles) from one of his children, exposing the main crew. Although Lovell and Haise had had rubella as children, command module pilot Ken Mattingly had not, and the flight surgeons grounded him, replacing him with Swigert. This may have been a blessing in disguise for him – Mattingly never developed rubella, and later flew on Apollo 16, STS-4, and STS-51-C. Mattingly was also able, using the simulator, to map out a plan for the astronauts to get the module going again using the limited power supply they had left. Charles Moss Duke, Jr. ... This page is for the disease. ... Thomas Kenneth Ken Mattingly II, Rear Admiral, USN (retired) (born March 17, 1936) is an American who as an astronaut flew on the Apollo 16, STS-4, and STS-51-C missions. ... Apollo 16 was the tenth manned mission in the Apollo program and the fifth mission to land on the Moon. ... STS-4 was a space shuttle mission by NASA using the Space Shuttle Columbia, launched June 27, 1982. ... STS 51-C was the fifteenth flight of a Space Shuttle and the third flight of Discovery. ...

Plaque that was to be attached to Aquarius
Plaque that was to be attached to Aquarius

There was no time to properly replace the original lunar plaque on Aquarius (which bore Mattingly’s name), so Jim Lovell was given a replacement (with Swigert’s name) to put over the original plaque once they landed on the moon. However, because the lunar landing was never made, Lovell kept the plaque, which is one of the few mementos from the mission that he has on display at his home. Image File history File links File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Apollo 11 Plaque Inscription: (Signatures: Armstrong, Collins, Aldrin, Nixon) Lunar plaques are square stainless steel plaques (9 x 7 5/8) attached to the ladders on the descent stages of the lunar modules used from Apollo 11 through Apollo 17. ...


As a result of following the free return trajectory, the altitude of Apollo 13 over the lunar far side was approximately 100 km greater than the corresponding orbital altitude on the remaining Apollo lunar missions. This could mean an all-time altitude record for human spaceflight, not even superseded as of 2008; however, the variation in distance between Earth and the Moon, owing to the eccentricity of the Moon's orbit about Earth, is much larger than 100 km, so it is not certain whether the actual distance from Earth was greater than that of all other Apollo missions. The Guinness Book of Records listed this flight as having the absolute altitude record for a manned spacecraft, and Lovell should have received a certificate from them attesting to this record. (Lovell wrote in the book Lost Moon that apart from the plaque and a couple of other pieces of salvage, the only other item he possessed regarding the Apollo 13 mission was a letter from Charles Lindbergh.) A free return trajectory is one of a very small sub-class of trajectories in which the trajectory of a satellite traveling away from a primary body (for example, the Earth) is modified by the presence of a secondary body (for example, the Moon) causing the satellite to return to... Far side of the Moon. ... Altitude is the elevation of an object from a known level or datum. ... In astrodynamics, under standard assumptions any orbit must be of conic section shape. ... Suresh Joachim, minutes away from breaking the ironing world record at 55 hours and 5 minutes, at Shoppers World, Brampton. ... Charles Augustus Lindbergh (February 4, 1902 – August 26, 1974) (nicknamed Lucky Lindy and The Lone Eagle) was an American aviator, author, inventor, explorer, and peace activist who, on May 20–21, 1927, rose instantaneously from virtual obscurity to world fame as the result of his piloting of the first solo...


The splashdown point was 21°38′S, 165°22′W, SE of American Samoa and 6.5 km (4 mi) from the recovery ship, USS Iwo Jima. USS Iwo Jima (LPH-2) was the lead ship of her class—the first ship to be designed and built from the keel up as an amphibious assault ship. ...


Superstitious people have associated the belief that 13 is an unlucky number with the mission, due to the fact that the mission began on April 11, 1970 (4/11/70, digits summing to 13) at 13:13 CST from Complex 39 (three times thirteen), the problems began on April 13, and the mission is called Apollo 13. Other coincidental appearances of the number 13 connected to the mission included the explosion occurring at 19:13 CST, and a post-flight estimate that, had the explosion occurred on the ground, repairing the damage would have cost $13 million. In a feature on the making of the Apollo 13 film, Jim Lovell pointed out that NASA has never had another spacecraft numbered 13. However, in NASA's preliminary schedule for the return to the moon, an upcoming spaceflight is to be called Orion 13. The stall numbers at the Santa Anita Park. ... is the 101st day of the year (102nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1970 (MCMLXX) was a common year starting on Thursday (link shows full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ...  CST or UTC-6 The Central Standard Time Zone (CST) is a geographic region in the Americas that keeps time by subtracting six hours from UTC (UTC-6). ... is the 103rd day of the year (104th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... In October 2006 NASA released a draft schedule of all planned NASA Project Constellation missions through 2019 [1]. This document included descriptions of a series of proposed vehicle test missions. ... Orion 13 is the current name of a NASA mission, the first Constellation lunar landing in conjunction with the LSAM 3. ...


The A7L spacesuit worn by Lovell would have been the first to feature red bands on the arms and legs of the suit, as well as on the life-support backpack and lunar EVA helmet assembly, to easily distinguish him from Haise. This was done because during the Apollo 12 mission, Mission Control personnel watching the video feed had trouble distinguishing the two astronauts while both Charles Conrad and Alan Bean had their side sunshades extended down. The red bands were a feature for the remaining Apollo flights, and are used on the Extravehicular Mobility Units worn by the astronauts of the Space Shuttle program and on the International Space Station (ISS). The A7L Apollo & Skylab spacesuit is the primary pressure suit worn by NASA astronauts for Project Apollo, the three manned Skylab flights, and the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project between 1968 and the termination of the Apollo program in 1975. ... Apollo 12 was the sixth manned mission in the Apollo program and the second to land on the Moon. ... For other people with similar names, see Peter Conrad Charles Pete Conrad, Jr. ... Alan LaVern Bean (born March 15, 1932 in Wheeler, Texas) is a former NASA Astronaut. ... NASA portrait of American Astronaut Thomas Akers, wearing a Shuttle EMU. The Space Shuttle/International Space Station Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) is an independent anthropomorphic system that provides environmental protection, mobility, life support, and communications for a Shuttle or ISS crew member to perform extra-vehicular activity (EVA) in earth... This article is about the NASA Space Shuttle program. ... ISS redirects here. ...


The Apollo 13 mission has been called “A Successful Failure”, in that the astronauts were successfully brought home despite not landing on the moon.


The Apollo 13 Mission Operations Team was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom for their actions during the mission, as were the astronauts. President Richard M. Nixon awards the Presidential Medal of Freedom to the Apollo 13 Mission Operations Team. ... The Presidential Medal of Freedom The Presidential Medal of Freedom is one of the two highest civilian awards in the United States and is bestowed by the President of the United States (the other award which is considered its equivalent is the Congressional Gold Medal, which is bestowed by an...


The Cold Cathode Gauge Experiment (CCGE), which was flown as part of the Apollo Lunar Surface Experiment Package (ALSEP) on Apollo 13, was never flown again. It was a version of the Cold Cathode Ion Gauge (CCIG) which was flown on Apollo 12, Apollo 14, and Apollo 15. The CCGE was designed as a stand-alone version of the CCIG. On other missions, the CCIG was connected as part of the Suprathermal Ion Detector (SIDE). Because of the aborted landing, this experiment was never actually deployed. Other experiments included on Apollo 13's ALSEP included the Heat Flow Experiment (HFE), the Passive Seismic Experiment (PSE), and the Charged Particle Lunar Environment Experiment (CPLEE).[12] The Apollo Lunar Surface Experiment Package, or ALSEP, was a set of connected scientific instruments left on the Moon when the Apollo program ended. ... Apollo 12 was the sixth manned mission in the Apollo program and the second to land on the Moon. ... Apollo 14 was the eighth manned mission in the Apollo program and the third mission to land on the Moon. ... Apollo 15 was the ninth manned mission in the Apollo program and the fourth mission to land on the Moon. ...


Towing fees

Grumman Aerospace Corporation, the builder of the LM, issued an invoice [13] for $312,421.24 to North American Rockwell, the builder of the CM module, for "towing" the crippled ship most of the way to the Moon and back. The invoice was drawn up as a gag following Apollo 13's successful splashdown by one of the pilots for Grumman, Sam Greenberg. He had earlier helped with the strategy for rerouting power from the LM to the crippled CM. The invoice included a 20% commercial discount, as well as a further 2% discount if North American were to pay in cash. North American politely declined payment, citing that they had ferried Grumman LMs to the Moon on two previous occasions with no such reciprocal charges. The Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation, later Grumman Aerospace Corporation, was a leading producer of military and civilian aircraft of the 20th century. ... Rockwell International was the ultimate incarnation of a series of companies under the sphere of influence of Willard Rockwell, who had made his fortune after the invention and successful launch of a new bearing system for truck axles in 1919. ...


Insignia

The Apollo 13 logo featured three flying horses of Apollo's chariot across space, the motto “Ex luna, scientia” (from the Moon, knowledge), and the number of the mission in Roman numerals (APOLLO XIII). It is one of two Apollo insignias (the other being that of Apollo 11) not to include the names of the crew (which was fortunate, considering that Ken Mattingly, one of the original crew members, was replaced not long before the mission began). It was designed by artist Lumen Winter, who based it on a mural he had done for the St. Regis Hotel in New York; the mural was later purchased by actor Tom Hanks, who portrayed Lovell in the movie Apollo 13, and now is on the wall of a restaurant in Chicago, owned by Lovell's son. Roman numerals are a numeral system originating in ancient Rome, adapted from Etruscan numerals. ... 13 (thirteen) is the natural number after 12 and before 14. ... This article covers the Apollo 11 mission itself. ... Thomas Kenneth Ken Mattingly II, Rear Admiral, USN (retired) (born March 17, 1936) is an American who as an astronaut flew on the Apollo 16, STS-4, and STS-51-C missions. ... Thomas Jeffrey Tom Hanks (born July 9, 1956) is an American film actor, director, voice-over artist, writer and film producer. ... Apollo 13 is a 1995 film portrayal of the ill-fated Apollo 13 lunar mission in 1970. ...


Relics

A view of the controls in the command module on display at the Cosmosphere.

The command module shell was formerly at the Musée de l'Air et de l'Espace, in Paris. The interior components were removed during the investigation of the accident and reassembled into BP-1102A, the water egress training module, and were subsequently on display at the Museum of Natural History and Science in Louisville, Kentucky, until 2000. Jim Lovell's lunar helmet is located at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. The command module and the internal components were reassembled, and Odyssey is currently on display at the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center, Hutchinson, Kansas. Image File history File links Apollo_13_control. ... Image File history File links Apollo_13_control. ... The Musée de lAir et de lEspace, or The Museum of Air and Space, is a French museum, located on the grounds of the Le Bourget Airport near Paris. ... This article is about the capital of France. ... The Louisville Science Center, previously known as the Louisville Museum of Science and Natural History, is Kentuckys largest hands-on science museum. ... Louisville redirects here. ... The Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center is a museum and educational facility in Hutchinson, Kansas that is best known for the display and restoration of space artifacts. ... Hutchinson is the largest city and county seat of Reno County, Kansas, west of Kansas City, Missouri, on the Arkansas River. ...


The lunar module burned up in Earth's atmosphere on April 17, 1970, having been targeted to enter over the Pacific Ocean to reduce the possibility of contamination from a SNAP 27 radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG) on board. (Had the mission proceeded as planned, the RTG would have been used to power the Apollo Lunar Surface Experiment Package, and then remained on the Moon.) The RTG survived re-entry (as designed) and landed in the Tonga Trench. While it will remain radioactive for approximately 2,000 years, it does not appear to be releasing any of its 3.9 kg of radioactive plutonium.[14] NASA has expressed a wish that the RTG be recovered.[citation needed] is the 107th day of the year (108th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1970 (MCMLXX) was a common year starting on Thursday (link shows full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Systems Nuclear Auxiliary Power Program (SNAP) was a program of experimental radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) and space nuclear reactors flown during the 1960s by NASA. Odd-numbered SNAPs were RTG tests and even-numbered SNAPs were reactor system tests. ... // A radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG) is a simple electrical generator which obtains its power from radioactive decay. ... The Apollo Lunar Surface Experiment Package, or ALSEP, was a set of connected scientific instruments left on the Moon when the Apollo program ended. ... The Tonga Trench is located in the Pacific ocean and is 32,000 ft (9,900 m) deep. ...


Popular culture

Portions of the events surrounding the Apollo 13 mission (from the perspective of the television reporters covering the mission) are dramatized in the miniseries From the Earth to the Moon episode entitled "We Interrupt This Program". From the Earth to the Moon is a twelve-part HBO television miniseries (1998) co-produced by Ron Howard, Brian Grazer, Tom Hanks, and Michael Bostick detailing the landmark Apollo expeditions to the Moon during the 1960s and early 1970s. ... From the Earth to the Moon is a twelve-part HBO television miniseries (1998) co-produced by Ron Howard, Brian Grazer, Tom Hanks, and Michael Bostick detailing the landmark Apollo expeditions to the Moon during the 1960s and early 1970s. ...


Apollo 13, a film based on Lost Moon, Jim Lovell and Jeffrey Kluger's book about the event (since retitled Apollo 13), was released in 1995. It was directed by Ron Howard and starred Tom Hanks, Bill Paxton, and Kevin Bacon as the astronauts, with Ed Harris as flight director Gene Kranz, and Kathleen Quinlan and Gary Sinise in supporting roles. Jim Lovell, Gene Kranz, and other principals have stated that this film depicted the events of the mission with reasonable accuracy, though some dramatic license was taken and some technical inaccuracies have been noted. The film is among several to misquote Lovell's famous statement, "Houston, we've had a problem."[15] Apollo 13 is a 1995 film portrayal of the ill-fated Apollo 13 lunar mission in 1970. ... Lost Moon: The Perilous Voyage of Apollo 13 Lost Moon is a book written by Jim Lovell the original crew of the Apollo 13 moon mission and Jeffrey Kluger. ... Captain James Jim Arthur Lovell, Jr. ... Jeffrey Kluger (b. ... Wikipedia does not yet have an article with this exact name. ... Thomas Jeffrey Tom Hanks (born July 9, 1956) is an American film actor, director, voice-over artist, writer and film producer. ... William Bill Paxton (born May 17, 1955) is a Golden Globe-nominated, Saturn Award-winning American actor and film director. ... Kevin Norwood Bacon[1] (born July 8, 1958) is an American film and theater actor who has starred in Footloose, Animal House, Stir of Echoes, Wild Things, JFK, and Apollo 13, among many others. ... For other persons of the same name, see Edward Harris. ... Chief of Flight Operations during a NASA space mission. ... Gene Kranz in a more recent photo. ... Kathleen Denise Quinlan (born November 19, 1954) is an Oscar nominated American actress, mostly seen on television and in motion pictures. ... Gary Alan Sinise (born March 17, 1955) is an Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning, Golden Palm- and Academy Award-nominated American actor and film director. ... Artistic licence or license (US), also known as dramatic license/licence, is a colloquial term used to denote the liberties an artist may take in the name of art — for example, if an artist decided it was more artistically correct to portray St. ...


The 1974 movie Houston, We've Got a Problem, while set around the Apollo 13 incident, is a fictional drama about the crises faced by ground personnel, when the emergency disrupts their work schedules and places additional stress on their lives; only a couple of news clips and a narrator's solemn voice deal with the actual problems. Houston, Weve Got a Problem, a 1974 TV-movie, starred Ed Nelson in the role of Gene Kranz. ...


References

  1. ^ Richard W. Orloff. Apollo by the Numbers: A Statistical Reference (SP-4029). NASA.
  2. ^ Lunar flyby (pericynthion) executed April 15, 1970
    00:21:00 UTC at 254.3 km above lunar surface.
  3. ^ Apollo 13 - A Successful Failure
  4. ^ a b NASA: The Flight of Apollo 13
  5. ^ Apollo 14 Launch Operations (comments on Apollo 13 pogo), Moonport: A History of Apollo Launch Facilities and Operations, NASA
  6. ^ Pogo, Jim Fenwick, Threshold - Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne’s engineering journal of power technology, Spring 1992
  7. ^ Mitigating Pogo on Liquid-Fueled Rockets, Aerospace Corporation Crosslink magazine, Winter 2004 edition
  8. ^ Lovell, Jim, and Jeffrey Kluger. Apollo 13. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2000. 83-87
  9. ^ Interior View of the Apollo 13 Lunar Module and the "Mailbox" (2007-01-16).
  10. ^ Account of Apollo 13 by James Lovell, NASA website
  11. ^ "THE STIR THAT SAVED THE LIVES OF APOLLO 13's CREW", Jerry Woodfill, retrieved 27 January 2007
  12. ^ Apollo Lunar Surface Experiment Package (ALSEP)
  13. ^ Invoice from Grumman Aerospace for towing the North American built CM
  14. ^ General Safety Considerations (pdf lecture notes). Fusion Technology Institute, University of Wisconsin-Madison (Spring 2000).
  15. ^ [Jones]; Test Division - Apollo Spacecraft Program Office (1970-04). Apollo 13 Technical Air-to-Ground Voice Transcription (PDF) (English) 160. NASA. Retrieved on 2007-10-04. “Houston, we've had a problem.”

is the 105th day of the year (106th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1970 (MCMLXX) was a common year starting on Thursday (link shows full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 16th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... The Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation, later Grumman Aerospace Corporation, was a leading producer of military and civilian aircraft of the 20th century. ... University of Wisconsin redirects here. ... PDF is an abbreviation with several meanings: Portable Document Format Post-doctoral fellowship Probability density function There also is an electronic design automation company named PDF Solutions. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ... is the 277th day of the year (278th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...

External links

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Image File history File links Download high resolution version (606x608, 438 KB)Apollo program insignia, cropped white spaces around image. ...

  Results from FactBites:
 
Apollo 13 (654 words)
Apollo 13 was scheduled for lift off in March, 1970, but more planning time was added and the liftoff was rescheduled for April 11, 1970.
The flight of Apollo 13 went as expected and the crew even did an interview from space with the media.
Apollo 13 was in trouble because the oxygen vent was not working.
Apollo 13 Summary (3817 words)
To be sure, the Apollo 11 and 12 collections contained significant numbers of small rock fragments which differed markedly in composition from the bulk of the mare-derived materials; and there was every reason to believe that many of these "exotic" fragments represented ejecta from impacts in the distant highlands.
Apollo 13 was launched about five months after Conrad, Gordon and Bean returned from the Moon.
Congressional support for Apollo had been weak for years and now there was a new President who was less than an ardent fan; and, while prediction of the political impact of serious accidents is far from an exact science, any accident was bound to raise questions about the credibility of NASA and its programs.
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