|astronautix.com||Chronology - 1970 - Quarter 2|
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Astronaut John L. Swigert, Jr., Apollo 13 backup command module pilot, began intensive training as a replacement for Thomas K. Mattingly II. The Apollo 13 prime crew had undergone a comprehensive medical examination after German measles had been contracted by Charles M. Duke, Jr., a member of the Apollo 13 backup crew. Mattingly had not shown immunity to the rubella virus and it was feared that he might become ill during the Apollo 13 flight. References: 16 .
Environmental research. Primary experiments consisted of an image dissector camera system for providing daytime cloudcover pictures both in real-time and recorded modes, temperature-humidity infrared radiometer (THIR) for measuring daytime and nighttime surface and cloudtop temperatures as well as the water vapor content of the upper atmosphere, infrared interferometer spectrometer (IRIS) for measuring the emission spectra of the earth/atmosphere system, satellite infrared spectrometer (SIRS) for determining the vertical profiles of temperature and water vapor in the atmosphere, a monitor of ultraviolet solar energy (MUSE) for detecting solar UV radiation, a backscatter ultraviolet (BUV) detector for monitoring the vertical distribution and total amount of atmospheric ozone on a global scale, a filter wedge spectrometer (FWS) for accurate measurement of IR radiance as a function of wavelength from the earth/atmosphere system, a selective chopper radiometer (SCR) for determining the temperatures of six successive 10-km layers in the atmosphere from absorption measurements in the 15-micrometer CO2 band, and an interrogation, recording, and location system (IRLS) for locating, interrogating, recording, and retransmitting meteorological and geophysical data from remote collection stations. The spacecraft performed well until April 14, 1971, when attitude problems started. The experiments then operated on a limited time basis until September 30, 1980. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 .
Apollo 13 (AS-508) was launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, KSC, at 2:13 p.m. EST April 11, with astronauts James A. Lovell, Jr., John L. Swigert, Jr., and Fred W. Haise, Jr., aboard. The spacecraft and S-IVB stage entered a parking orbit with a 185.5-kilometer apogee and a 181.5-kilometer perigee. At 3:48 p.m., onboard TV was begun for five and one-half minutes. At 4:54 p.m., an S-IVB burn placed the spacecraft on a translunar trajectory, after which the CSM separated from the S-IVB and LM Aquarius. (The crew had named lunar module 7 Aquarius and CSM 109 Odyssey.) The CSM then hard-docked with the LM. The S-IVB auxiliary propulsion system made an evasive maneuver after CSM/LM ejection from the S-IVB at 6:14 p.m. The docking and ejection maneuvers were televised during a 72-minute period in which interior and exterior views of the spacecraft were also shown.
At 8:13 p.m. EST a 217-second S-IVB auxiliary propulsion system burn aimed the S-IVB for a lunar target point so accurately that another burn was not required. The S-IVB/IU impacted the lunar surface at 8:10 p.m. EST on April 14 at a speed of 259 meters per second. Impact was 137.1 kilometers from the Apollo 12 seismometer. The seismic signal generated by the impact lasted 3 hours 20 minutes and was so strong that a ground command was necessary to reduce seismometer gain and keep the recording on the scale. The suprathermal ion detector experiment, also deployed by the Apollo 12 crew, recorded a jump in the number of ions from zero at the time of impact up to 2,500 shortly thereafter and then back to a zero count. Scientists theorized that ionization had been produced by 6,300 K to 10,300 K (6,000 degrees C to 10,000 degrees C) temperature generated by the impact or that particles had reached an altitude of 60 kilometers from the lunar surface and had been ionized by sunlight.
Meanwhile back in the CSM/LM, the crew had been performing the routine housekeeping duties associated with the period of the translunar coast. At 30:40 ground elapsed time a midcourse correction maneuver took the spacecraft off a free-return trajectory in order to control the arrival time at the moon. Ensuring proper lighting conditions at the landing site. The maneuver placed the spacecraft on the desired trajectory, on which the closest approach to the moon would be 114.9 kilometers.
At 10:08 p.m. EST April 13, the crew reported an undervoltage alarm on the CSM main bus B, rapid loss of pressure in SM oxygen tank No. 2, and dropping current in fuel cells 1 and 3 to a zero reading. The loss of oxygen and primary power in the service module required an immediate abort of the mission. The astronauts powered up the LM, powered down the CSM, and used the LM systems for power and life support. The first maneuver following the abort decision was made with the descent propulsion system to place the spacecraft back in a free-return trajectory around the moon. After the spacecraft swung around the moon, another maneuver reduced the coast time back to earth and moved the landing point from the Indian Ocean to the South Pacific.
About four hours before reentry on April 17, the service module was jettisoned and the crew took photographs and made visual observations of the damaged area. About one hour before splashdown the command module was powered up and the lunar module was jettisoned. Parachutes were deployed as planned, and the Odyssey landed in the mid-Pacific 6.4 kilometers from the recovery ship U.S.S. Iwo Jima at 1:07 p.m. EST April 17. The astronauts were picked up by helicopter and transported to the recovery ship less than an hour after splashdown. Additional Details: Apollo 13. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 , 16 , 26 , 27 , 33 , 60 .
NASA Hq. established an Apollo 13 Review Board to investigate the Apollo 13 accident. References: 16 .
Four students at Kent State University in Ohio slain by National Guardsmen at demonstration protesting incursion into Cambodia
The feasibility of docking a second Orbital Workshop to Skylab 1 had been under consideration. However, the practical problems that would be engendered by such an operation were formidable. They included such items as docking loads, docking control, flight attitude of tandem Skylabs, consumables, and in-orbit storage of Skylab 1.
US reconnsat detects N1 being installed on the pad. It remained there, without payload, at least through 4 June. References: 96 .
Full go-ahead to develop a liquid hydrogen/liquid oxygen high energy upper stage for the N1F. The multi-engine Block Sr would have a propellant mass of 66.4 tonnes. In July Kuznetsov was given authorisation to design substantially improved versions of the N1 lower stage rocket engines. The N1 that would utilise these engines was designated the N1F and would have a payload to a 225 km orbit of 105,000 kg.
Manned flight endurance test. Medico-biological, scientific and technical studies and experiments in prolonged orbital flight. Inconclusive results due to slow sun-oriented rotation of spacecraft to conserve fuel producing motion sickness in cosmonauts. Recovered June 19, 1970 11:59 GMT. Additional Details: Soyuz 9. References: 1 , 2 , 6 , 32 , 33 , 60 .
Central Committee of the Communist Party and Council of Soviet Ministers Decree 'On standardised weather satellite system' was issued. The resolution also ordered VNIIEM to develop a parallel design of another meteosat for the hydrology office alone. This was not put into production. References: 474 .
Decree 437-160 'On creation of the TKS and termination of the 7K-TK' was issued. In 1969 Chelomei proposed replacement of the 11F72 Soyuz 7K-TK with his own transport-supply spacecraft 11F72 (transportnovo korablya snabzheniya - TKS). This would consist of the same 11F74 VA landing capsule used on the Almaz station, together with a new 11F77 functional-cargo block (funktsionalno-gruzovovo blok, FGB). This would transport three crew and sufficient supplies for 90 day operation of the Almaz. References: 474 .
Operation of a system of long range telephone-telegraph radiocommunication, and transmission of USSR Central Television programmes to the stations of the Orbita network. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 , 64 .
Original planned date for first flight tests of Spiral with rocket first stage. References: 83 .
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