A year after the successful moon landing of Apollo 11, three astronauts attempted a second moon landing on Apollo 13. But this mission’s fate was doomed to fail sending the crewmembers back to Earth without every touching foot on the moon. Here are some interesting facts about the Apollo 13 mission.
Fact 1: Apollo 13 launched on April 11, 1970 and returned to Earth on April 17, 1970. The entire mission lasted 142 hours, 54 minutes, and 41 seconds.
Fact 2: Apollo 13’s mission was to explore the moon’s Fra Mauro Highlands region.
Fact 3: The Apollo 13 crewmembers were ‘œJuniors’: James A. Lovell, Jr. (Commander), John L. Swigert, Jr. (Command Module Pilot), and Fred W. Haise, Jr. (Lunar Module Pilot).
Fact 4: On April 13, just two days into the mission, an oxygen tank exploded, forcing the crew to abandon the spacecraft.
Fact 5: The famous line, ‘œHouston we’ve had a problem’ was said by Swigert.
Fact 6: The crew used the Lunar Module Aquarius and then to get back to Earth.
Fact 7: Aquarius was built for only two crewmembers. To avoid carbon dioxide poisoning, the crew built air filters out of cardboard, plastic bags, and duct tape.
Fact 8: There was no heat in Aquarius and the temperature dropped to freezing.
Fact 9: The crew had a plaque with their names engraved on it that they were going to leave on the moon. Instead, Lovell brought it back to Earth as a ‘œsouvenir’.
Fact 10: Aquarius safely landed on the USS Iwo Jima in the Pacific Ocean.
Fact 11: In 1995 Ron Howard directed the film ‘œApollo 13’, starring Tom Hanks and Kevin Bacon. It was well received.
Fact 12: Both the astronauts and the mission control team were awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.