10-1 the race to save apollo 13 .10-1 the race to save apollo 13 apollo 13 • the goal of the...
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10-1 The Race to Save Apollo 13
The goal of the Apollo program was to send astronauts to the moon and return themhome safely. It was named for Apollo, the Greek god of archery, prophecy, music,healing, and poetry; he was also associated with the sun. The Apollo spacecraft was designed to carry three crew members. It consisted of threemodules. The Command Module was where the crew lived for most of the flight. TheService Module contained the system that powered the spacecraft, and storage tanks forwater and air. There was also a Lunar Module that could carry two crew members to themoons surface and return them to the orbiting spacecraft. In 1967, the Apollo program had its only fatal accident. Three astronauts died when afire swept through their Apollo 1 spacecraft during a test on a launch pad. The first manned Apollo flight happened on October 11, 1968, when Apollo 7 waslaunched into low Earth orbit. Later that year, Apollo 8 orbited the moon. Apollo 11 crew members made the first manned lunar landing on July 20, 1969.Hundreds of millions of viewers watched the event on television. Apollo 13 was launched on April 11, 1970. Soon after the mission began, an oxygentank exploded in the Service Module, which caused severe damage to the other oxygentank located close to it. The explosion was the result of several small factors thatcombined to create a very dangerous situation for the men aboard. The astronauts usedthe Lunar Module as a lifeboat. The combined efforts of many engineers and scientistson the ground plus the astronauts own problem solving and hard work enabled them toreturn to Earths orbit and successfully land four days after the accident happened. During the Apollo program, a total of 12 American astronauts walked on the moon. Thelast moon landing occurred in December 1972.
Copyright Holt McDougal/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.