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  Apollo 14 through Apollo 19 launch windows

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Author Topic:   Apollo 14 through Apollo 19 launch windows
aloeblacc3
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Posts: 6
From: Trophy Club, TX, USA
Registered: Feb 2014

posted 02-19-2014 01:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for aloeblacc3   Click Here to Email aloeblacc3     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Had Apollo 13 landed successfully on the Moon with no oxygen tank problems, what times would Apollo missions 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, and 19 launch to their designated lunar landing sites?
  • Apollo 14: July 8, 1970
  • Apollo 15: October 30, 1970
  • Apollo 16: March 29, 1971
  • Apollo 17: July 30, 1971
  • Apollo 18: February 19, 1972
  • Apollo 19: July 14, 1972

Spacepsycho
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From: Huntington Beach, Calif.
Registered: Aug 2004

posted 02-19-2014 03:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Spacepsycho   Click Here to Email Spacepsycho     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I believe Apollo 20 was cancelled in 1970, Apollo 18 and 19 were cancelled by Nixon the next year. Even if Apollo 13 was successful, the Apollo 18, 19 and 20 lunar landing missions would have been cancelled.

I remember reading something by Cap Weinberger that Nixon wanted to cancel the lunar program after Apollo 14. Besides being blasted by the press for "wasting" taxpayer money on the space program instead of spending that money on social programs, Nixon was afraid that a lunar landing mission would eventually end in disaster.

Headshot
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From: Streamwood, IL USA
Registered: Feb 2012

posted 02-19-2014 04:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Headshot   Click Here to Email Headshot     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
There were also discussions about delaying the last two Apollo lunar landing missions until after the Skylab flights. Skylab would have been moved forward and the last two Apollos would have flown in 1973-1974.

I am not certain as to the reasoning behind this.

Blackarrow
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From: Belfast, United Kingdom
Registered: Feb 2002

posted 02-19-2014 05:35 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Blackarrow     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
One of the reasons would have been to allow the lunar geologists to "catch their breath."

As a teenage space-nut, I found the gap of 6 months (between Apollos 14 and 15); 9 months (between 15 and 16); and 8 months (between 16 and 17) to be unbearable, but the scientists tasked with analysing the results of each mission had very little time to reach conclusions which might assist the next crew.

I remember the suggestion that the last two landings might be postponed until after Skylab. I suspect that proposal divided the scientists into those who would have appreciated the extra research time and those whose political antennae would have detected the risk of the deferred missions being cancelled.

Skylon
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posted 02-19-2014 09:36 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Skylon     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I personally think if you are going to fly both Skylab and Apollo 18 and 19 then flying Skylab first makes sense. If Skylab failed to make orbit, then you would need another Saturn V to launch the backup workshop, and their numbers were finite. If Apollo 18 and 19 flew before Skylab you'd be out of luck.

aloeblacc3
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From: Trophy Club, TX, USA
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posted 02-20-2014 09:00 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for aloeblacc3   Click Here to Email aloeblacc3     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
But wouldn't it make sense if Apollo 18 and 19 launched on the dates I listed and have the Skylab space station launch in May 1973 with Conrad's crew launching the day after? I think so.

carmelo
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From: Messina, Sicilia, Italia
Registered: Jun 2004

posted 02-20-2014 09:18 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for carmelo   Click Here to Email carmelo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Had Apollo 13 landed successfully on the moon with no oxygen tank problems, Fred Haise would have been commander on 19, or CMP John Swigert (sorry Ken Mattingly) would have been the commander of Apollo 19?

aloeblacc3
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From: Trophy Club, TX, USA
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posted 02-20-2014 11:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for aloeblacc3   Click Here to Email aloeblacc3     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Fred Haise would've been CDR of Apollo 19 with William Pogue as CMP and Gerald Carr as LMP. Haise and Carr would scout the Hyginus Rille after landing there and become the legitimate last men on the Moon. Cernan and Engle, if he flew on 17, would lose that title.

By the way, did you know that Tom Hanks incorrectly said in the 1995 movie, "Apollo 13," that Haise was to be CDR on Apollo 18? Dick Gordon already had that position at the time it was canceled, and I guess Hanks didn't know that for a fact.

Also, Mattingly would focus on either the Apollo Applications Program or the Space Shuttle program. Jack Swigert would've flown on Apollo 16 as CMP with John Young and Charlie Duke, and would've possibly flown his second spaceflight in the Apollo portion of the ASTP mission with Tom Stafford and Deke Slayton if, and only if, the stamp incident did not occur.

What if Robert Crippen, Karol Bobko, and William Thornton from the Skylab Medical Experiment Altitude Test actually flew to Skylab? Could that be possible?

Delta7
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From: Ossian IN USA
Registered: Oct 2007

posted 02-20-2014 11:41 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Delta7   Click Here to Email Delta7     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
If Apollo 13 had been successful, it seems doubtful to me that Haise would have got another landing as CDR of Apollo 19. (Remember Deke Slayton's purported quote about lunar landings: "You only get one of those.")

Maybe he would have made an exception but a more likely scenario to me is Swigert being selected as backup CDR of Apollo 16 then CDR of Apollo 19 with Pogue and Carr.

Or maybe Deke would have convinced Tom Stafford to take the job if he didn't have that confidence in Swigert (and there's no reason to believe he didn't have it).

Headshot
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From: Streamwood, IL USA
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posted 02-20-2014 12:24 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Headshot   Click Here to Email Headshot     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Had 13 landed and only Apollo 20 been cancelled, Apollo 19 would probably have been targeted for Hadley. The original Apollo 15 H-4 mission's target was the bright new crater Censorinus. These are from the final landing site candidate list published in late Oct. 1969. Of course this list became somewhat moot after the events of 1970.

I believe that Hyginus Rille was dropped from the landing site candidate list in favor of Davy Rille/crater chain. Eventually Davy was itself dropped in favor of Hadley Rille.

carmelo
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From: Messina, Sicilia, Italia
Registered: Jun 2004

posted 02-20-2014 05:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for carmelo   Click Here to Email carmelo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Delta7:
Or maybe Deke would have convinced Tom Stafford to take the job if he didn't have that confidence in Swigert
Or maybe Jim McDivitt.

Anyway for the last shot a Haise second landing would have been great! In a parallel universe maybe Fred Haise is the man that would go twice on the moon!

(For Skylab 4 some possibility for Schweickart, McCandless, Musgrave?)

Skylon
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posted 02-20-2014 08:14 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Skylon     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Delta7:
(Remember Deke Slayton's purported quote about lunar landings: "You only get one of those.")
That was in regards to commanding a lunar landing. LMPs were considered possible candidates to return to the Moon - though I am sure Slayton would have preferred to spread the wealth, and assign CMP's and CDRs. I'd just guess Slayton would make the call on who he felt was more qualified to fly as CDR (former CMP or LMP) and who was available to recycle.

Had Swigert flown on Apollo 16, I doubt he would have been considered for ASTP. Slayton had him under consideration for ASTP because he felt bad throwing him aboard Apollo 13 at the last minute, and then the flight nearly killed him - he wanted Swigert to get a shot at a good, successful flight.

carmelo
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Posts: 822
From: Messina, Sicilia, Italia
Registered: Jun 2004

posted 02-21-2014 09:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for carmelo   Click Here to Email carmelo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Skylon:
I'd just guess Slayton would make the call on who he felt was more qualified to fly as CDR (former CMP or LMP) and who was available to recycle.
Roosa?

(I remember bad, or Fred Haise was the more qualified LMP?)

Skylon
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posted 02-21-2014 11:29 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Skylon     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
If needed, I think Slayton would have had no qualms about assigning Roosa as CDR. This is really a grey area of speculation though, and we are dancing around so many what-ifs (Apollo 13 successfully flying AND Apollo 18 and 19 not getting scrubbed) you run into a lot of possibilities - Would Fred Haise want to even go back to the Moon if he walked on it once? Did Slayton consider Jack Swigert a potential lunar landing commander? It's anybody's guess.

I have always wondered what implications the flights of Apollo 18 and 19 would have on Skylab. Who would have a better shot at commanding Skylab 4 - Walt Cunningham or Rusty Schweickart - or does someone from Apollo like Stu Roosa get moved over to Skylab? My personal thought is, SL 2 and 3 fly with the same crews. SL 4 flies with Bruce McCandless as PLT. Don Lind flies on ASTP as CMP or DMP.

Fra Mauro
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From: Maspeth, NY
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posted 02-21-2014 05:13 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Fra Mauro   Click Here to Email Fra Mauro     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I think to be reasonable (and to keep the migranes to a minimum!), we must agree than any astronaut gets only one lunar landing assignment as long as the astronaut pool is sufficient.

Paolo P
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From: Edinburgh UK
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posted 02-22-2014 03:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paolo P     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I don't see why Haise wouldn't get the flight. He was first Group 5 to get assigned, and had backed up twice before 13. Obviously he was in Slayton's good books, and was highly trained. Slayton states that he was 'pointed at 19' (in 'Deke')and given that he was prepared to hang in and remain dead-end back-up on 16 it doesn't seem like he was tired of the grind. Given astronaut office attrition, other candidates needing to get back into the rotation in time and barring McDivitt or Stafford 'doing a Shepard' - I don't see him getting bumped.

On McDivitt coming back into the rotation - I've always wondered about what Dave Scott said in 'Two Sides of the Moon'. He recounts McDivitt telling him he was tired and that Apollo 9 would be his last mission. I've never seen that stated anywhere else. It contradicts the notion that McDivitt wanted to fly again, but with his Apollo 9 crew - and the idea of him being LM pilot under Shepard (both scenarios mentioned in 'Deke'). What does McDivitt say - apart from that he's never going to write a book....

BBlatcher
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From: Savannah, GA, USA
Registered: Aug 2011

posted 02-22-2014 08:34 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for BBlatcher     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Skylon:
Would Fred Haise want to even go back to the Moon if he walked on it once?
Considering how he hung in there as backup commander of Apollo 16, which was a dead end job, it's pretty clear Haise would have cheerfully walked on the Moon twice. I can't imagine any of the LMP's wouldn't have enjoyed walking on the Moon twice, especially if they got to be Commander.

Oh how I wish NASA had flown 18 and 19, especially after the accident on 13. I always felt Dick Gordon and Fred Haise deserved their chance to walk on the Moon.

Tom
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From: New York
Registered: Nov 2000

posted 02-23-2014 09:16 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tom   Click Here to Email Tom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BBlatcher:
I always felt Dick Gordon and Fred Haise deserved their chance to walk on the Moon.
...and let's not forget Jim Lovell.

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