April 19, 2018 at 4:28 pm #4491
I find it amazing to contemplate that we recently passed the 50th Anniversary of Apollo 6 in April 1968. A remarkable flight as it was the second test flight of the complete Saturn 5/Apollo spacecraft combination. Things did not go according to plan, with engine problems affecting the second and third stages such that the critical third stage (S4B) did not restart successfully. This engine restart was critical as it was necessary to leave near-earth orbit for the moon.
Imagine that if that were the case now and we followed the same timeline as 1968.
We would go from 2 unmanned launches of this vehicle by April to a manned mission in October 1968, (only 6 months later!) , the first manned Saturn 5 launch, and then a decision would be taken following that one manned flight that a mission to orbit the moon would take place in December! Only 8 months after an unsuccessful vehicle test and only 2 months after the first successful manned mission.
What an adventure!
April 19, 2018 at 4:29 pm #4492
It was a race though so perhaps risks were taken that wouldn’t been today – although there was a big chance of egg in the face
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