SP-4012 NASA HISTORICAL DATA BOOK: VOLUME III
PROGRAMS AND PROJECTS 1969-1978
 

Table 2-36. Chronology of Apollo Development and Operations, 1969-1973*

 

Date

Event

.

Jan. 19-22, 1969

The Apollo 9 flight readiness test was completed successfully.

Feb. 3, 1969

In a published schedule of proposed launches, NASA Headquarters announced that there would be five Apollo flights in 1969: one manned earth-orbital, one manned lunar-orbital, and three manned lunar landings.

Mar. 3-13, 1969

Apollo 9 was launched successfully at 11:00 a.m. (all times EST) on Mar. 3. Four days later in earth orbit, the crew performed command and service module-lunar module (CSM-LM) separation maneuvers. On the 13th, the command module (CM) splashed down in the Atlantic Ocean at 12:01 p.m. James A. McDivitt, David R. Scott, and Russell L. Schweikart made up the crew.

Mar. 24, 1969

It was announced that the Apollo 10 crew would take the LM from lunar orbit to within 15 240 meters of the surface to test the LM further in preparation for the first manned landing.

Mar. 25, 1969

The first flight model of the Apollo Lunar Science Experiments Package (ALSEP) arrived at the Kennedy Space Center (KSC).

Apr. 7, 1969

A Lunar Roving Vehicle Task Team was established at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) to coordinate that center's lunar rover development activities; the team's name was changed to Lunar Mobility Task Team on Aug. 18.

Apr. 7-11, 1969

The Apollo 10 flight readiness test was completed successfully.

May 18-26, 1969

Apollo 10 was launched successfully at 12:49 p.m. (all times EDT) on May 18 and was placed in a lunar trajectory. On the 21 st, the spacecraft was inserted into lunar orbit. The next day the crew performed the required LM low-level descent exercises, the CSM and the LM being separated for eight hours. Splashdown in the Pacific occurred at 12:52 p.m. on the 26th. Thomas P. Stafford, John W. Young, and Eugene A. Cernan made up the crew.

May 27, 1969

MSFC was authorized to proceed with the development of a lunar roving vehicle.

June 11, 1969

It was stated by Samuel C. Phillips, director of the Apollo Program at NASA Headquarters, that missions had been approved through Apollo 20.

July 16-24, 1969

Apollo 11 was launched successfully at 9:22 a.m. (all times EDT) on July 16. Three days later the spacecraft entered lunar orbit. On the 20th, Astronauts Neil A. Armstrong and Edwin E. Aldrin, Jr., took the LM to the surface, leaving Michael Collins in the CSM. Armstrong became the first man to set foot on the moon at 10:56 p.m. After 21 + hours on the surface, the LM ascent stage returned to the orbiting CSM. Splashdown took place in the Pacific on the 24th at 12:15 p.m.

Oct. 28, 1969

NASA awarded a contract to the Boeing Co. for the development and production of a lunar roving vehicle. MSFC would manage the project.

Nov. 14-24, 1969

Apollo 12 was launched on Nov. 14 at 11:22 a.m. (all times EST). Lightning struck the vehicle twice within a minute of liftoff without inflicting damage. On the 17th, the crew inserted their spacecraft into lunar orbit. Two days later, Astronauts Charles Conrad and Alan L. Bean took the LM to the surface for a 31 + -hour visit. They returned to the waiting CSM piloted by Richard F. Gordon on the 20th. Splashdown took place on the 24th in the Pacific at 3:58 p.m.

Jan. 4, 1970

Because of budget cuts, NASA cancelled its plans for an Apollo 20 mission and stretched out the scheduling for the remaining 7 missions to 6-month intervals.

Feb. 6, 1970

NASA Headquarters and the field centers reached an agreement concerning the requirements for a lunar roving vehicle.

Apr. 11-17, 1970

Apollo 13 was launched successfully on Apr. 11 at 2:13 p.m. (all times EST). On the 13th during their translunar coast, the crew reported that they were experiencing loss of oxygen and primary power in the service module, which demanded that the mission be aborted. Astronauts James A. Lovell, Jr., John L. Swigert, Jr., and Fred W. Haise, Jr., adapted the LM to serve as their living quarters for the return trip to earth. On Apr. 17 at 1:07 p.m., the CM splashed down in the Pacific. That same day an Apollo 13 Review Board was established to investigate the hardware failures.

June 15, 1970

The Apollo 13 Review Board delivered its final report.

Sept. 2, 1970

NASA officials announced that budget cuts had forced them to cancel the original Apollo 15 and 19 missions; the remaining flights were designated Apollo 14 through 17.

Jan. 31-Feb. 9, 1971

Astronauts Alan B. Shepard, Jr., Stuart A. Roosa, and Edgar D. Mitchell aboard Apollo 14 were launched successfully on their way to the moon on Jan. 31 at 4:03 p.m. (all times EST). On Feb. 4, the spacecraft was put into lunar orbit, from which Shepard and Mitchell left in the LM on the 5th for the surface. They returned to the CSM on the 6th. The crew splashed down in the Pacific three days later at 4:05 p.m.

Apr. 1, 1971

The first lunar roving vehicle, to be included on Apollo 15, was delivered to KSC.

July 26-Aug. 7, 1971

Apollo 15 was launched with David R. Scott, Alfred M. Worden, and James B. Irwin aboard on July 26 at 9:34 a.m. (all times EDT). Lunar orbit was achieved on the 29th, with Scott and Irwin reaching the surface the next day. On Aug. 2, the crew returned to the CSM. Splashdown in the Pacific was on Aug. 7 at 4:47 p.m.

Apr. 16-27, 1972

Astronauts John W. Young, Thomas K. Mattingly 11, and Charles M. Duke, Jr., were launched on their way to the moon on Apollo 16 on Apr. 16 at 12:54 p.m. EST. Three days later the crew attained lunar orbit, with landing taking place on the 20th. Young and Duke left the surface on April 23. Splashdown in the Pacific was at 2:44 p.m. on the 27th.

Dec. 7-19, 1972

Apollo 17, the last Apollo manned lunar mission, was launched at 12:33 a.m. (all times EST) on Dec. 7. Astronauts Eugene A. Cernan, Ronald E. Evans, and Harrison H. Schmitt reached lunar orbit on the 10th. The next day Cernan and Schmitt landed on the moon's surface for three days of activities. Splashdown in the Pacific was at 2:25 p.m. on the 19th.

Mar. 15, 1973

At NASA Headquarters within the Office of Space Science, a Lunar Programs Office was established, under which the Lunar Data Analysis and Synthesis Program would be conducted.

*For a chronology of pre-1969 events, see table 2-50, vol. 2.


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