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Project Apollo

Some of the earliest roots of this program can be traced to 1953 when research began on the feasibility of a rocket engine capable of producing 1 million pounds of thrust.

The Apollo program itself was announced in July 1960.  Many contractors ultimately participated in Apollo. The most notable are: North American, Apollo Command and Service Modules; Grumman, Apollo Lunar Module; Boeing, Saturn 1st stage; North American Rockwell, Saturn 2nd stage; McDonnell-Douglas, Saturn 3rd stage; and the Rocketdyne Division of North American, Saturn engines.  The Marshall Space Flight Center was heavily involved in Apollo.

Apollo Boiler Plate 29A
Apollo Boiler Plate 29A
Used for floatation testing
(Click to enlarge)

Apollo 1, the first manned Apollo flight, was scheduled for late 1966, but problems delayed the schedule until February 1967.  In January 1967, a fire in the capsule during a rehearsal killed the Apollo 1 crew and led to extensive redesign and delay of over a year and a half.  The first manned flight, Apollo 7, took place in October 1968.

The total cost of the Apollo program was USD 25.4 billion (1969, in 2001 USD 111 billion). 381.7 kg (841.5 lb) of material was brought back from the lunar surface.

Saturn V Quick Facts

The Saturn V (with the Apollo) stood 363 feet tall. The Saturn 1C first stage was 33 feet in diameter, 138 feet tall, and weighed 5 million pounds fully fueled. Each of the five F-1 first stage engines could produce 1.5 million pounds of thrust, for a total of 7.5 million pounds of first stage thrust. The first stage could propel the vehicle to an altitude of 38 miles with a velocity of 6000 mph in about 2.5 minutes.

The Saturn II second stage was over 81 feet tall, powered by five J-2 engines. It burned for a little over 6.5 minutes, providing a velocity of 15,350 mph at an altitude of 114 miles.

The Saturn IVB third stage had a single J-2 restartable engine. The first burn lasted 2.75 minutes. The second burn lasted just over 5 minutes and put the vehicle on the path to the moon.

Saturn the Giant by Wernher von Braun

Men to the Moon

Nine Apollo missions have been around the moon. Six of these missions landed. Three men (Lovell, Young, and Cernan) each made two trips.

Twelve men have walked on the moon:
1.   Neil Armstrong - Apollo 11
2.   Edwin Aldrin, Jr. - Apollo 11
3.   Charles Conrad, Jr. - Apollo 12
4.   Alan Bean - Apollo 12
5.   Alan Shepard, Jr. - Apollo 14
6.   Edgar Mitchell - Apollo 14
7.   David Scott - Apollo 15
8.   James Irwin - Apollo 15
9.   John Young - Apollo 16 (Also circled the moon in Apollo 10)
10.   Charles Duke - Apollo 16
11.   Eugene Cernan - Apollo 17 (Also circled the moon in Apollo 10)
12.   Harrison Schmitt - Apollo 17

Another twelve men have seen the backside of the moon:
Frank Borman - Apollo 8
James Lovell - Apollo 8 and again in Apollo 13
William Anders - Apollo 8
Thomas Stafford - Apollo 10
Michael Collins - Apollo 11
Richard Gordon - Apollo 12
John Swigert - Apollo 13
Fred Haise, Jr. - Apollo 13
Stuart Roosa - Apollo 14
Alfred Worden - Apollo 15
Thomas Mattingly, II - Apollo 16
Ronald Evans - Apollo 17

moon_landing_map_sm.jpg (46266 bytes)
Lunar Landing Sites
(click to enlarge)
Source - NASA

Cancelled Lunar Missions

Apollo 17 was the last manned mission to the moon.  There were originally 3 more planned, but were cancelled due to budget cuts and the fear of another tragedy after the Apollo 13 incident.

Apollo 18 (command module later flew as ASTP) was scheduled for April of 1972.  It was cancelled on 2 September 1970.   The tentative crew was to have been Gordon, Brand, and Schmitt. The proposed landing location was Copernicus.

Apollo 19 was scheduled for July of 1972 and was also cancelled on 2 September 1970.  The tentative crew would have been Haise, Pogue, and Carr. The proposed destination was Hadley.

Apollo 20 had been slated for December of 1972 but was cancelled on 4 January 1970.  Crew was possibly to have been Conrad, Weitz, and Lousma. The proposed destination was Tycho.

Crews were never actually named for these missions, so the above mentioned names are purely speculative. The Apollo 13 failure would likely have caused the lunar destinations to be changed.


Page last modified: 16 January 2017 13:30:42.