Apollo 13 flight plan mission notes up for auction | Science | News

The 352-page document bears the annotations made by all three crew members recording in detail the actions they had to take after an explosion ripped off part of their space ship.

The mission notes include the crucial changes made to the flight plan that ensured the stricken craft defied the odds and returned to Earth rather than float out to space.

It was presented by mission commander Jim Lovell, who was played by Tom Hanks in the 1995 movie Apollo 13, and fellow astronauts Fred Haise and Jack Swigert to the lead flight planner Robert ‘Bob’ Lindsey following their return.

The front page of the plan carries a touching personal message from the trio, thanking Lindsey for putting together the ‘perfect’ flight plan.

It reads: “To Bob – a truly perfect flight plan as far as we got. We know it would have led us by the hand the rest of the way also.

“Thanks for this remarkable document which we carried to the moon on Odyssey 11 – 17 April 1970.” 

The flight plan has remained in the Lindsey family for the last 47 years and they have now decided to put it up for auction with an estimate price of £30,000.

The Apollo 13 mission which set off on April 11, 1970 was meant to culminate in a third moon landing, with Lovell and Haise voyaging to the lunar surface while Swigert orbited in the command module Odyssey. 

But just under 56 hours into the mission, an oxygen tank explosion resulted in a major loss of electrical power to the command and service module, forcing the crew to cancel the lunar landing and move into the Aquarius lunar module.

They used it as a lifeboat in order to survive a four day journey around the moon and return back to Earth. 

With NASA experts working around the clock and under tremendous pressure, an alternate flight plan had to be rapidly developed which resulted in the safe return of the crew despite seemingly insurmountable obstacles. 

The flight plan, which measures 8.5in by 10in, is divided into seven sections consisting of timelines, consumables and food logs.

The notations in black felt-tip pen were by Lovell, in blue ball-point pen by Swigert and in pencil by Haise.

There is an element of foreshadowing as a problem with the tank gauge is noted nine hours before the oxygen tank exploded.

The pre-ordained flight plan for hours 55 to 56 – the time of the explosion – has been crossed out with annotations made in haste as alternative plans were developed in light of the disastrous event.

The meal log at the back of the flight plan was altered…

Read the full article from the Source…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *