Advanced Design, Fabrication, and Testing
ASPO Manager Joseph F. Shea replied to a recommendation by the Assistant
Director for Flight Operations to incorporate warning lights in Block I
and II CMs to indicate failure of the gimbal actuator secondary drive
motors. ASPO decided that no failure indication would be provided for
the redundant drive motors in Block I spacecraft because:
The warning lights would be incorporated in Block II spacecraft, and the
in-flight checkout procedures would also apply to Block II lunar
- in-flight checkout procedures would provide for exercising the
gimbal actuators by the primary and secondary drive motors prior to
service propulsion system burns; and
- all manned Block I missions would be conducted in earth orbit and
reaction control system deorbit capability was stipulated.
Memorandum, Joseph F. Shea, MSC, to Assistant Director for Flight
Operations, "Service Propulsion System (SPS) Secondary Gimbal
Motor Fail Indication," June 1, 1965.
In an attempt to reduce the overall preflight time in connection with
lunar landing research vehicle (LLRV) activities, a meeting was held at
Flight Research Center. Principal participants were Ray White, Leroy
Frost, Leonard Ferrier, Joe Walker, Don Mallick, Cal Jarvis, Jim Adkins,
Zeon Zwink, Wayne Ottinger, and Gene Matranga.
The session commenced with an estimate of time required to perform each
of the functions on the preflight checklist. Review indicated that
preflight might be shortened in several ways:
In general, though several operations were performed simultaneously
during most of preflight, it appeared other operations could be
performed in parallel and thereby reduce overall preflight time.
Memorandum for Files, "LLRV Preflight Procedures," Gene J.
Matranga, June 2, 1965.
- since the radar altimeter and doppler radar units did not affect
safety of flights, it was suggested that radar checks on flight mornings
be reduced to a minimum or be performed without inspection coverage;
- addition of ac and dc voltmeters in the cockpit would eliminate need
for power checks during the avionics preflight;
- when the weight and drag computer had been properly checked in
flight, the weight and drag preflight check could be streamlined down
from the 30 minutes currently required; and
- investigate the need to refill H2O2 after prime.
ASPO advised North American that, at present, no unmanned flights were
planned for the Block II CM. After the company concluded its own
analysis of Apollo requirements, MSC would determine whether the
heatshield must be verified prior to manned missions. But because of
the long "lead time" involved, North American should continue
securing the requisite instrumentation pending a final decision.
TWX, C. L. Taylor, MSC, to NAA, Space and Information Systems Division,
Attn: J. C. Cozad, subject: "Requirements for Mission Programmers and
Heat Shield Measurements in Block II CSM," June 2, 1965.
Northrop-Ventura began qualification testing of the earth landing system
for Apollo with a drop of boilerplate 19 at El Centro, Calif. The entire
landing sequence took place as planned; all parachutes performed
"Apollo Monthly Progress Report," SID 62-300-38, pp. 2-3.
NASA launched Gemini IV, America's second multi-manned space mission,
piloted by astronauts James A. McDivitt and Edward H. White II, from
Cape Kennedy. Gemini IV's primary objective was to evaluate the
performance of man and machine during prolonged space flight. Also
during this flight, White opened the hatch on his spacecraft and
performed America's first "space walk." On June 7, after four
days in space, McDivitt and White landed their vehicle in the Atlantic
Ocean some 724 km (450 mi) east of the Cape.
James M. Grimwood and Barton C. Hacker with Peter J. Vorzimmer,
Project Gemini Technology and Operations: A Chronology
(NASA SP-4002, 1969), pp. 200-202.
MSC approved North American's recommendation that a programmer timer
approach be used for earth reacquisition by the CSM's S-band high-gain
"ASPO Weekly Management Report, June 3-10, 1965."
ASPO Manager Joseph F. Shea concluded, after reviewing the boilerplate
22 mission, that all the test objectives would be met satisfactorily
either in the flight of spacecraft 002 or in the ground qualification
program. For that reason the boilerplate 22 flight would not be
repeated. Memorandum, Shea to Distr., "Test Objectives," June
ASPO reported a number of significant activities in its Weekly Activity
"Weekly Activity Report, June 6-12, 1965,"sgd. Joseph F. Shea.
- The CSM design engineering inspection was satisfactorily conducted
at North American June 8-10.
- Qualification of the Apollo standard initiator was successfully
completed by Space Ordnance Systems, Inc.
- The first full systems firing of the LEM ascent engine was
accomplished at Bell Aerosystems using the heavyweight ascent (HA)-2
propulsion test rig.
- The LEM development program was revised and LEM test article
(LTA)-4, LTA-5 ascent stage, flight test article (FTA)-1, and FTA-2
George E. Mueller, Associate Administrator for Manned Space Flight,
approved procurement of the lunar surface experiments package (LSEP).
The package, to be deployed on the moon by each LEM crew that landed
there, would transmit geophysical and other scientific data back to
earth. NASA's Office of Space Science and Applications would make the
final selection of experiments. Mueller emphasized that the LSEP must be
ready in time for the first lunar landing mission. Management
responsibility for the project was assigned to MSC's Experiments Program
Memorandum, George E. Mueller, NASA, to MSC, Attn: Dave Lang,
"Request for Approval of Procurement Plan for Lunar Surface
Experiments Package," June 7, 1965; NASA OMSF, Apollo Program
Directive No. 3, "Management Assignment for the Lunar Surface
Experiments Package (LSEP) Project," June 15, 1965.
Apollo Program Director Samuel C. Phillips approved MSC's request for
revised velocity budgets for the two spacecraft. It was understood that
these new values would:
Letter, Samuel C. Phillips, NASA, to MSC, Attn: Director, ASPO,
"Revised Apollo Spacecraft Delta V Budget (U), per letter dated
May 18, 1965, Reference PS8/L-82/65," June 7, 1965; Memorandum,
Carl R. Huss, JSC, to JSC Historical Office, "Comments on Volume
III of The Apollo Spacecraft: A Chronology," June 6,
- still meet the free return trajectory constraint; and
- increase (to at least two degrees) the LEM's out-of-plane launch
capability. MPAD/FOD provided the analysis and recommendations leading
to this decision.
MSC directed NAA to make a "predesign" study of a rocket
landing system for the Block II CM. (The Center had already studied the
system's feasibility and had conducted full-scale drop tests.)
Letter, C. L. Taylor, MSC, to NAA, Space and Information Systems
Division, Attn: J. C. Cozad, "Contract NAS 9-150, CM Rocket
Landing System Study Meeting, 15 June 1965," June 22, 1965, with
enclosure, "Minutes of Rocket Landing System Study Meeting,"
June 15, 1965; TWX, J. C. Ellis, NAA, to NASA Headquarters, Attn:
Director, Procurement and Supply Division, July 15, 1965.
North American's Rocketdyne Division began qualification testing on the
CM's reaction control system engines.
NAA, "Project Apollo Spacecraft Test Program Weekly Activity
Report (Period 7 June 1965 through 13 June 1965)," p. 3.
Russia launched Luna VI, an instrumented moon probe. Tass
reported that all onboard equipment was functioning normally. Two days
into the flight, however, the spacecraft's engine failed to shut down
following a midcourse correction. This failure caused Luna
VI to miss its target by more than 160,000 km (99,419 mi).
Space Business Daily, June 11, 1965, p. 216; Tikhonravov,
et al., Ten Years of Space Research in the
USSR, p. 17.
MSC reviewed a lighting mockup of the crew compartment in the Block II
CM. The design concept, though needing further refinement, was deemed
acceptable. Engineers from Crew Systems Division found that lights on
the fingertips of the suit gloves worked quite well; optimum
positioning was as yet undetermined, however. At the same time, MSC
reviewed the design of the Block I side hatch (i.e., not modified to
meet Block II extravehicular requirements). Reviewers found North
American's major problems were warpage and crew ingress from space.
Further, the design of both side hatches needed "additional
coordination" with that of the umbilical access arm of the launch
tower to ensure compatibility.
"ASPO Weekly Management Report, June 3-10, 1965"; "ASPO
Weekly Management Report, June 10-17, 1965."
Crew Systems Division reported that MSC had ordered Hamilton Standard to
integrate seven layers of thermal protection into the A5H pressure suit.
Memorandum, Francis J. DeVos and William C. Kincaide, MSC, to Record,
"Meeting on June 9, 1965, to discuss thermal and meteoroid
protection for the Apollo Extravehicular Mobility Unit," June 22,
Crew Systems Division reported that, as currently designed, the
environmental control system (ECS) in the LEM would not afford adequate
thermal control for an all-battery spacecraft. Grumman was investigating
several methods for improving the ECS's thermal capability, and was to
recommend a modified configuration for the coolant loop.
Memorandum, Owen E. Maynard, MSC, to Distr., "LEM battery thermal
control problem," June 17, 1965.
NASA hired the U.S. Navy's Air Crew Equipment Laboratory (ACEL) to study
several physiological aspects of pure-oxygen environments. Primarily,
ACEL's study would try to determine: (1) whether known effects (such as
lung collapse) could somehow be reversed; and (2) whether such
environments enhanced respiratory infections.
"ASPO Weekly Management Report, June 10-17, 1965."
A list of materials that North American reported using in the CM's
habitable area omitted more than 70 items that had appeared in earlier
such reports. MSC ordered the company to determine why. This item could
affect the course of backup toxicity testing. Materials listed as
"used but not tested" were given highest priority in toxicity
MSC ordered Grumman to propose a gaseous oxygen storage configuration
for the LEM's environmental control system (ECS), including all oxygen
requirements and system weights. Because no decision was yet made on
simultaneous surface excursions by the crew, Grumman should design the
LEM's ECS for either one-or two-man operations. And the Center further
defined requirements for cabin repressurizations and replenishment of
the portable life support systems. Oxygen quantities and pressures would
be worked out on the basis of these ground rules. (See July 1-8.)
TWX, R. Wayne Young, MSC, to GAEC, Attn: R. S. Mullaney, June 11, 1965.
The question of whether a data tape recorder would be installed on LEM-1
had been discussed at several Apollo 206 Mission Operations Plan
meetings and there was a strong possibility it would not be installed.
In a memorandum to ASPO Manager Joseph F. Shea, Assistant Director for
Flight Operations Christopher C. Kraft, Jr., pointed out that his
Directorate had responsibility to ASPO of insuring "that all possible
test objectives are accomplished. This is done not only by real-time
conduct of the mission, but also through considerable premission
planning which integrates the desired profile with the Manned Space
Flight Network. The underlying purpose of all these operations
activities is the accumulation of data, which for unmanned,
nonrecoverable spacecraft such as LEM-1 can only be provided through the
use of RE telemetry. The FOD (Flight Operations Directorate) does not
believe the Apollo 206A Mission Objectives can be assured of being
accomplished without the addition of a data tape recorder and associated
playback transmitter. . . ."
Kraft said the tradeoff of weight and cost of a data recorder and dump
transmitter versus possible loss of data for primary mission objectives,
considering the cost of a Saturn IB launch vehicle, a fully functional
LEM spacecraft, and the ground support required, seemed inequitable. He
recommended that a data tape recorder and associated playback
transmitter be installed on LEM-1 (and 2) to ensure that test objectives
Memorandum, Kraft to Shea,"LEM-1 Mission 206A Data Tape
Recorder," June 11, 1965.
ASPO Manager Joseph F. Shea, in a memorandum to Robert Williams, said
that, confirming their discussion with Christopher C. Kraft, Jr., and
Donald K. Slayton, both had agreed that HE orbital communications in the
Block II Apollo spacecraft were not needed. Shea asked Williams to look
into the implications of removing the requirement.
Memorandum, Shea to Williams, "Block II communication
system," June 12, 1965.
MSC and North American discussed the brittleness of the boost protective
cover and the possibility that, during tower jettison or abort, the
cover might break up and cause damage to the spacecraft. Having
investigated a number of various materials and construction techniques,
North American recommended adding a nylon fabric to strengthen the
structure. Company engineers believed that, thus reinforced, the cover
would be less likely to tear apart in flight. Even though this would
increase the weight of the cover by about 27 kg (60 lbs), MSC concurred.
The change applied to both Block I and Block II CMs, and was effective
for spacecraft 002, 009, and all subsequent vehicles.
Letter, C. L. Taylor, MSC, to NAA, Space and Information Systems
Division, Attn: J. C. Cozad, "Contract NAS 9-150, Implementation
of Actions Recommended at the NASA/NAA Boost Protective Cover Problem
Area Review at MSC June 11, 1965," June 21, 1965, with enclosure:
"Abstract of Proceedings, NASA/NAA Boost Protective Cover Problem
Area Review, MSC, June 11, 1965," June 14, 1965; memorandum, Owen
E. Maynard, MSC, to Chief, Structures and Mechanics Division,
"Action Items resulting from Boost Protective Cover Problem Area
Review at MSC, June 11, 1965," June 15, 1965; memorandum, Maynard,
to Chief, C&SM Contract Engineering Branch, "CCA to NAA on
backing material for Boost Protective Cover," June 24, 1965.
Apollo Program Director Samuel C. Phillips listed the RE communications
systems envisioned by NASA Headquarters on the first three R&D LEMs
and requested ASPO Manager Joseph F. Shea's comments.
The first three LEMs (LEM-1, LEM-2, and LEM-3) would be equipped with
communications equipment in addition to that required in the LEM for
lunar missions to provide:
The LEM R&D communications system was essentially independent from the
operational communications systems. It would be housed primarily in the
equipment bay (which on operational flights would house the scientific
- transmission of required engineering (R&D) data;
- redundant operational telemetry;
- updating of spacecraft equipment via an up-data command link; and
- redundant tracking capability.
Letter, Phillips to Shea, "R&D Communications and Tracking
systems in LEMs 1, 2, 3," June 12, 1965.
Samuel C. Phillips, Apollo Program Director, noted MSC request for
support from Goddard Space Flight Center on LEM battery development as
well as Goddard's agreement to furnish limited support.
Phillips suggested to ASPO Manager Joseph F. Shea that since MSFC had
much experience in the design, development, and operational aspects of
battery systems, it was important to use their experience and
recommended MSFC be contacted if such action had not already occurred.
Memorandum, Phillips to Shea, "LEM Battery Development," June
MSC Director Robert R. Gilruth appointed a Technical Working Committee,
headed by Edwin Samfield, to oversee the design of a Lunar Sample
Receiving Laboratory at the Center.
Memorandum, Robert R. Gilruth, MSC, to Chief, Engineering Division,
"Formation of a Technical Working Committee for the design of a
Lunar Sample Receiving Laboratory and designation of consultants to
assist in the selection of an architect-engineer firm," June 14,
Using a LEM mockup at Grumman, and with the assistance of astronauts
Roger B. Chaffee and Donn F. Eisele, engineers from Hamilton Standard
performed mobility tests of the reconfigured portable life support
system (PLSS). Crew Systems Division (CSD) reported that the reshaped
back pack did not hinder entering or leaving the spacecraft; and while
some interference problems were inescapable when the PLSSs were worn
inside the spacecraft for any period of time, CSD believed that damage
could be prevented through training and by limiting movement by the
crew. Grumman, however, contended that the newer PLSSs had "serious
implications" for mobility inside the LEM.
GAEC, "Monthly Progress Report No. 29," LPR-10-45, July 10,
1965, p. 3; "ASPO Weekly Management Report, June 10-17,
1965"; MSC, "ASPO Weekly Management Report, June 17-24,
Independent studies were made at MSC and North American to determine
effects and impact of off-loading certain Block II service propulsion
system components for Saturn IB missions. The contractor was requested
to determine the weight change involved and schedule and cost impact of
removing one oxidizer tank, one fuel tank, one helium tank and all
associated hardware (fuel and oxidizer transfer lines, propellant
quantity sensors and certain gaging wire harnesses) from CSM 101 and CSM
103. The MSC study was oriented toward determining technical problems
associated with such a change and the effects on spacecraft operational
The service module.
The North American study indicated that removing the equipment would
save about 690 000, along with a weight reduction of approximately 454
kg (1,000 lbs). Their report also indicated there would be no schedule
impact provided go-ahead was given for CSM 101 prior to June 1, 1965,
and for CSM 103 prior to November 1, 1965.
The MSC study indicated a maximum burn limitation of 280 seconds, due
to excessive drop in helium temperature; and also pointed out that the
change to the gaging system might not be as simple as North American
stated because of the arrangement of the secondary sensing system.
However, those problems did not appear insurmountable.
Memorandum, Owen E. Maynard, MSC, to Manager, ASPO, Attn: W. A. Lee,
"OffLoading Block II SPS Components for Saturn IB Missions,"
June 15, 1965.
In a series of meetings at Downey, Calif., MSC, Grumman, and North
American worked out most of the interface between the two spacecraft.
Among the most significant items yet unresolved were: the thermal
environment of the LEM during boost; and the structural loads and
bending modes between the docked spacecraft.
Letter, C. L. Taylor, MSC, to NAA, Space and Information Systems
Division, Attn: J. C. Cozad, "Contract NAS 9-150, Resolution of
CSM/LEM Interfaces, MSC/NAA/GAEC Coordination Meetings No. 27 and 29,
June 15-18 and June 24-25, 1965, respectively," July 28, 1965,
with enclosure: "Minutes of Coordination Meeting . . . ,"
June 24-25, 1965; "Monthly Progress Report No. 29,"
LPR-10-45, p. 1.
At Bethpage, N.Y., officials from Grumman and the Flight Projects
Division (FPD) discussed the status of LEM-1. During early May, the
company had agreed to devise a comprehensive development plan for the
spacecraft, one that included hardware status; manufacturing and
checkout sequences; requirements for facilities, ground support
equipment, and software; and projected schedules. By mid-June, Grumman
was still unprepared to discuss details, however, and requested another
month to work on the plan. FPD could no longer remain patient: "It
is the intention of this office," the division reported to ASPO,
"to conduct a monthly LEM-1 status meeting . . . until the LEM-1
program plan is clearly defined."
Memorandum, J. Thomas Markley, MSC, to H. L. Reynolds, "Detailed
LEM-1 working schedule," June 7, 1965; letter, R. Wayne Young,
MSC, to GAEC, Attn: R. S. Mullaney, "Contract NAS 9-1100, LEM-1
Status Meeting," June 25, 1965; "ASPO Weekly Management
Report, June 10-17, 1965."
To prevent the CSM's contacting the LEM's radar antenna (a problem
disclosed during docking simulations), deviations in the CSM's roll
attitude would be limited to eight degrees or less.
"ASPO Weekly Management Report, June 17-24, 1965."
MSC ordered North American to revise the deployment angles of the
adapter panels: 45 degrees for separation, docking, and LEM withdrawal;
and - at most - 60 degrees for abort separation. (See December 7, 1964.)
Letter, J. B. Alldredge, MSC, to NAA, Space and Information Systems
Division, "Contract Change Authorization No. 275, Revision
1," June 16, 1965; letter, H. G. Osbon, NAA, to NASA MSC, Attn: C.
L. Taylor, "Contract NAS 9-150, R&D for Project Apollo
Spacecraft Results of Action Item from Eleventh Flight Mechanics,
Dynamics, Guidance and Control Panel Meeting," June 29, 1965, with
MSC directed Grumman to modify the LEM's pulse code modulation and
timing electronics assembly to enable it to telemeter data from the
abort electronics assembly (AEA). Thus, if data from the AEA disagreed
with those from the spacecraft's guidance computer, the two sets could
be reconciled on the ground (using inputs from the Manned Space Flight
Network), relieving the astronauts of this chore.
Letter, James L. Neal, MSC, to GAEC, Attn: John C. Snedeker,
"Contract NAS 9-1100, Contract Change Authorization No. 112,
Provide Capability in PCMTEA to Telemeter AGS Computer Digital
Data," June 16, 1965.
The net effect of a decision by ASPO Manager Joseph F. Shea in May was
that the total fuel cell effort at both Pratt and Whitney and North
American should be no more than $9.7 million during FY 1966. The
decision as to the distribution of the funds was left to the discretion
of the fuel cell subsystem manager.
Memorandum for Record, J. Thomas Markley, "C&SM Fuel Cell
Effort," June 16, 1965.
Structures and Mechanics Division (SMD) reported that Grumman had found
two thermal problems with the LEM:
"ASPO Weekly Management Report, June 17-24, 1965";
memorandum, Joseph N. Kotanchik, MSC, "Review of requirement for
Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation (GAEC) ground support
equipment (GSE) Item LDW-410-12050, Thermal Control System," June
- On the basis of current predictions, the spacecraft's skin and
several antennas would overheat during the boost phase of the mission.
SMD engineers, after analyzing the problem, believed that an
"acceptable LEM environment" could be achieved by lessening
the heat transferred from the inner panels of the adapter and by
increasing that emitted by the outer panels.
- Also, Grumman had reported that, when exposed to exhaust plumes
from the SM's reaction control engines, the LEM's skin would overheat
in about five seconds. "Since the LEM withdrawal . . . requires 20
to 26 sec RCS firing," SMD understated, "it is apparent that
a problem exists." One suggested solution involved improved
June 16-July 15
North American submitted a design proposal for a scientific airlock for
the CM (applicable to 014 and all Block II spacecraft). Structural
design was scheduled to begin shortly.
NAA, "Apollo Monthly Progress Report," SID 62-300-39, August
1, 1965, p. 4.
June 16-July 15
North American reported two service propulsion engine failures at AEDC
and a third at WSMR. At the first location, both failures were
attributed to separation of the thrust chamber from the injector
assembly; in the latter instance, weld deficiencies were the culprit.
Analysis of all these failures was continuing.
Ibid., p. 11.
MSC directed Hamilton Standard Division to study the feasibility of
incorporating a manual override in the current pressure relief valve.
During lunar surface activity, a failed relief valve would prevent
further operation of the suit.
TWX, Richard S. Johnston, MSC, to Hamilton Standard Division, Attn: R.
E. Breeding, June 17, 1965.
Officials from Bellcomm, MSFC, and the Apollo offices in Houston and in
Washington planned primary and alternate missions for the Saturn IB
(applicable to SA-201 through SA-208). On July 16, the Office of Manned
Space Flight specified launch vehicles (both Saturn IB and V hardware)
for Apollo missions.
NASA OMSF, Apollo Program Directive No. 4, "Apollo Controlled
Milestones and Hardware Quantities - Change Approval," July 16,
1965; memorandum, B. Kaskey, Bellcomm, to File, "Apollo Alternate
Missions Meeting, Case 217 (U)," June 22, 1965.
A Development Engineering Inspection (DEI) was held on spacecraft 002 at
North American, Downey, California. The NASA Board consisted of W. M.
Bland, Jr., Chairman; R. H. Ridnour, J. Chamberlin, S. A. Sjoberg, F. J.
Bailey, O. G. Morris, O. E. Maynard, and O. Tarango.
A total of 20 Request for Changes (RFCs) were submitted and reviewed;
12 of them resulted from the design review conducted at MSC prior to
the DEI, and eight resulted from the inspection of the vehicle. The
final disposition of the RFCs was: seven approved for immediate action;
five approved for study; three rejected; and five determined not
Memorandum, W. M. Bland, Jr., MSC to Distr., "Results of
Spacecraft 002 Development Engineering Inspection," sgd. E. M.
Fields, June 23, 1965.
Crew Systems Division engineers evaluated various battery combinations
for the portable life support system. The division recommended a
three-hr main and a one-hr backup arrangement, which would save about 9
kg (20 lbs) in the total weight of the vehicle.
Memorandum, Richard S. Johnston, MSC, to Chief, Systems Engineering
Division, "PLSS battery sizing," June 17, 1965.
NASA representatives briefed officials from the Atomic Energy Commission
on the Apollo experiments program and discussed means of coordinating
the Commission's work on a radioisotope generator to power those
"ASPO Weekly Management Report, June 17-24, 1965."
Crew Systems Division began evaluating space suits for the Apollo
program (submitted by Hamilton Standard, David Clark, and International
Latex. (See July 8-15.)
North American's Rocketdyne Division conducted the 1,000th test firing
of the Saturn V's first-stage engine, the F-1, MSFC.
Space Business Daily, June 23, 1965, p. 275; History
of Marshall. . . January 1-December 31, 1965, p. 240.
Joseph F. Shea, ASPO Manager, established as a firm mission requirement
the capability to connect the space suit to the LEM's environmental
system and to the portable life support system while in a vacuum. This
capability was essential for operational flexibility on the moon's
Memorandum, Joseph F. Shea, MSC, to Chief, Crew Systems Division,
"Suit Connections," June 21, 1965.
The following definitions were specified for use in evaluating design
reliability, for design tradeoff studies, and in appropriate Interface
Memorandum, William A. Lee and Harry L. Reynolds, MSC, to Chief,
Systems Engineering Division, "Mission success and crew safety
definitions," June 21, 1965.
- Mission success
- all primary mission objectives must have been accomplished and both
the crew and command module safely recovered.
- Alternate mission
- if a contingency prevented completion of all primary mission
objectives, but did not require immediate termination of the mission, an
alternate mission plan would be followed but alternate missions would
not be included in design reliability calculations.
- the only objective after an abort decision was the safest recovery
of the crew considering the contingency which caused the abort.
June 21-July 1
Crew Systems Division (CSD) conducted a series of flight tests to
determine whether the cabin layout of the LEM was suitable for crew
performance in zero and one-sixth g environments. Together with its
report of satisfactory results, the division made several observations
that it thought "appropriate":
MSC, "ASPO Weekly Management Report, July 8-15, 1965."
- CSD suggested hand grips in a number of places to aid the crew
- Additional restraints were needed to supplement the Velcro pile on
the cabin floor
- Some problems with crew performance and mobility, present during
one-g simulations, were absent in low- or zero-g environments (e.g.,
moving from one crew station to another).
MSC advised Grumman of additional functions for the computer in the
LEM's abort guidance section (to be added only if a part of its memory
was left over after the basic requirements were digested). These
functions, in order of priority, MSC listed as:
Letter, R. Wayne Young, MSC, to GAEC, Attn: R. S. Mullaney,
"Contract NAS 9-1100, LEM Abort Guidance Section Functional
Requirements," June 22, 1965.
- Midcourse corrections
- Automatic abort from a coasting descent
- Display of CSM-LEM range and range rate
- Automatic terminal rendezvous (with manual velocity control).
NASA Headquarters established an Ad Hoc Surveyor Orbiter Utilization
Committee and MSC was requested to submit names of two proposed members.
It was suggested that the nominees be familiar with the mission planning
and constraints of the Apollo program. The first meeting was planned for
On July 29, MSC Director Robert R. Gilruth submitted the names of
William A. Lee and William E. Stoney, Jr. He noted that the same two
individuals were being nominated to serve as MSC members on the Apollo
Site Selection Board. Gilruth expressed a desire that the meetings of
the two groups could be coordinated to the extent that travel would be
Letter, Homer E. Newell, Associate Administrator for Space Science and
Applications, to MSC, Attn: Dr. Robert R. Gilruth, "Members of Ad
Hoc Surveyor/Orbiter Utilization Committee," June 22, 1965;
letter, Gilruth to Newell, "Members of Ad Hoc Surveyor/ Orbiter
Utilization Committee," July 29, 1965.
In a memorandum concerning Configuration Control Panel and
Configuration Control Board actions, J. Thomas Markley, Chief of ASPO's
Program Control Division, pointed out that many proposals coming before
the two groups were not being adequately evaluated for program impact
by the responsible subsystem or technical area manager. He said, in
part, "We must keep the number of changes to a minimum and
incorporate only those that are necessary to meet program objectives.
We are beyond the time when we can afford the luxury design improvement
changes, unless they can show substantial savings to the overall
program. . . ."
Memorandum, Markley to Distr., "CCB/CCP Actions," June 23,
The operational requirement for Block I and Block II CSM HE orbital
communications capability was investigated. ASPO requested that
appropriate contract direction and specification change notices be
submitted immediately to eliminate this capability from the Block II CSM
and the practicality of eliminating the HE orbital capability from the
Block I CSM be investigated.
Memorandum, William A. Lee, MSC, to Subsystem Manager, CSM
Communications Subsystem, "Requirement for Block I and Block II
CSM HF Orbital Communications Capability," June 23, 1965.
June 24-July 1
Dalmo-Victor submitted to MSC a report on modifications necessary to
extend to lunar distances the operating range of the CSM's high-gain
antenna. The Instrumentation and Electronic Systems Division was
reviewing the report.
MSC, "ASPO Weekly Management Report, June 24-July 1, 1965."
June 24-July 1
MSC completed a cursory analysis of LEM landing gear load-stroke
requirements at touchdown velocities of 2.43 m (8 ft) per sec vertical
and 1.22 m (4 ft) per sec horizontal. This study was conducted to
determine the lowest crush loads at 8-4 velocity to which the gear could
be designed and still meet its landing performance requirements.
Ibid.; memorandum, William G. McMullen, MSC, to Manager,
ASPO, "Elimination of TM-5 vehicle from the LEM Landing Gear
Subsystem Test Program," July 7, 1965.
NASA announced the appointment of Col. C. H. Bolender as Mission
Director for the first and second Apollo/Saturn IB flights. Bolender was
assigned to the Mission Operations Organization in the Office of Manned
Space Flight, NASA.
NASA News Release 65-211.
MSC approved North American's concept for thermal control of the valves
in the CM's reaction control system (essential for long-duration
missions). The crew could electrically heat the valves for about ten
minutes before CSM separation and before the system was pressurized,
thereby forestalling possible freezing of the oxidizer when it contacted
Letter, C. L. Taylor, MSC, to NAA, Space and Information Systems
Division, Attn: J. C. Cozad, "Contract NAS 9-150, Effects of
Spacecraft Venting Systems on RCS Propellant Requirements,
Determination of," June 23, 1965.
Harry L. Reynolds, Assistant Manager of ASPO, said it was
"becoming increasingly clear that we are going to have a difficult
job keeping the LEM weight below the control weight." He said the
Grumman effort was not adequate and suggested that R. Bullard of MSC be
given LEM weight control as a full-time responsibility.
Memorandum, Reynolds to Chief, Systems Engineering Division, "LEM
Weight Control," June 25, 1965.
ASPO informed Grumman, NAA, AC Spark Plug, and MIT that effective June
21, 1965, General Electric Company, Apollo Support Department, Daytona
Beach, Fla., had assumed responsibility for the preparation and conduct
of all automatic checkout equipment (ACE) training for NASA and its
To satisfy conditions of its contract, General Electric would:
Purpose of selection of a single ACE training contractor and
establishment of a standard set of courses was to provide participating
organizations a sufficient amount of training and a universal
understanding of ACE.
- Survey NASA and contractor ACE training requirements and prepare for
ASPO endorsement a standard set of lesson plans (course outlines) for
three distinct ACE training courses -
- for ACE operators and operational checkout procedures writers,
- for personnel who had site assignments but were not operators, and
- for all other individuals who did not satisfy the aforementioned
- Issue with ASPO approval a lesson plan for each ACE training course.
These plans would be considered baseline documents and deviations would
not be permitted without prior approval from ASPO.
- Prepare one study guide which would contain common reference
information for all three ACE training courses.
- Issue coordinated ACE training schedules approved by ASPO.
- Distribute monthly status reports to each participating
organization. 'This report would contain a training schedule for the
next three months as well as a discussion of achievements. To control
established plans and implement changes, the coordinator for each
participating organization would be responsible for determining local
training requirements and coordinating those needs with other
contractors or NASA elements who desired training at that facility.
- Issue a citation which would acknowledge satisfactory course
completion to those qualifying students.
Letters, R. Wayne Young, MSC, to GAEC, Attn: R. S. Mullaney,
"Contract NAS 9-1100, ACE Training," June 25, 1965; M. E.
Dell, MSC, to AC Spark Plug, Attn: Hugh Brady, "Contract NAS
9-497, ACE Training," June 28, 1965; M. E. Dell, MSC, to MIT,
Attn: M. B. Trageser, "Contract NAS 9-4065, ACE Training,"
June 28, 1965; J. B. Alldredge, MSC, to NAA, Space and Information
Systems Division, Attn: J. C. Cozad, "Contract NAS 9-150, ACE
Training," June 29, 1965.
NASA announced negotiations with Douglas Aircraft Company for nine additional S-IVB stages to be used as the third stage of the Saturn V
launch vehicle being developed at Marshall Space Flight Center. Work was
to include related spares and launch support services. The S-IVB
contract, presently valued at $312 million, would be increased by $150
million for the additional work.
NASA News Release 65-209, "NASA to Negotiate with Douglas for more
S-IVB Stages," June 25, 1965; Space Business Daily,
June 28, 1965, p.295.
MSC approved North American's proposed location of the antenna for the
radar transponder in the CSM, as well as the transponder's coverage.
This action followed a detailed review of the relative positions of the
two spacecraft during those mission phases when radar tracking of the
LEM was required.
Letter, R. Wayne Young, MSC, to GAEC, Attn: R. S. Mullaney,
"Contract NAS 9-1100, Radar Transponder Antenna Location on
CSM," June 25, 1965.
The first ground-test version of the Saturn V's first stage is shown being removed from its vertical assembly tower at NASA's Michoud Operations Facility June 27, 1965. The stage was 10 m (33 ft) in diameter and 42 m (138 ft) tall.
Owen E. Maynard, Chief of the Systems Engineering Division, vetoed a
demand by the Flight Control Division for redundancy in the LEM's pulse
code modulation telemetry system. Two factors determined Maynard's
Memorandum, Owen E. Maynard, MSC, to Chief, Flight Control Division,
"LEM PCM telemetry redundancy," June 28, 1965.
- cost and schedule impacts, and
- the resultant weight and power increases that redundancy would
impose. Also it would produce only a "marginal" increase in
the total reliability of the spacecraft.
Systems Engineering Division chief, Owen E. Maynard, reported to the
Instrumentation and Electronic Systems Division (IESD) the results of a
study on a LEM communications problem (undertaken by his own group at
IESD's request). During phases of powered descent to certain landing
sites (those in excess of 20 degrees east or west longitude), the
structure of the spacecraft would block the steerable antenna's line of
sight with the earth. Communications with the ground would therefore be
lost. Maynard concurred with IESD that the problem could best be solved
by rotating the LEM about its thrust axis.
Memorandum, Owen E. Maynard, MSC, to Chief, Instrumentation and
Electronic Systems Division, "Providing adequate earth coverage
from the LEM S-band steerable antenna during lunar descent and
ascent," June 28, 1965.
John H. Disher, Director of the OMSF Apollo Test Office, stressed two
broad areas open to concern in the Apollo spacecraft heatshield
The structural integrity question centered around the following
problems: welding, ablative material integrity, and impact strength.
- structural integrity, and
- flight-test confirmation of the Block II design.
MSC had planned to qualify the Block II heatshield by flight tests of
modified Block I spacecraft 017 and 020. Some of the Block II changes
could not be incorporated into modified Block I spacecraft in time to
meet the current schedule and limitations of facilities would not permit
full evaluation of all modifications by ground testing.
Disher suggested to Apollo Program Director Samuel C. Phillips that ASPO
Manager Joseph Shea be asked to present physical descriptions of the
Block I and Block II heatshields, and interim versions as applied to
specific spacecraft, as well as the test plan that would ensure adequacy
of heatshields to meet mission requirements. Memorandum, Disher to
Phillips, "Apollo Spacecraft Heat Shield," June 28, 1965.
MSC directed North American to design the CM to store one integrated
thermal meteoroid garment (TMG), rather than merely the thermal covering
alone. The crewmen would carry the TMG into the LEM for use during
Letter, J, B. Alldredge, MSC, to NAA, Space and Information Systems
Division, "Contract Change Authorization No. 371," June 29,
The launch of PA-2.
NASA launched Apollo mission PA-2, a test of the launch escape system
(LES) simulating a pad abort at WSMR. All test objectives were met. The
escape rocket lifted the spacecraft (boilerplate 23A) more than 1,524 m
(5,000 ft) above the pad. The earth landing system functioned normally,
lowering the vehicle back to earth. This flight was similar to the first
pad abort test on November 7, 1963, except for the addition of canards
to the LES (to orient the spacecraft blunt end forward after engine
burnout) and a boost protective cover on the CM. PA-2 was the fifth of
six scheduled flights to prove out the LES. [Mission objectives in
Memorandum, George E. Mueller, NASA, to Administrator, "Apollo
Spacecraft Pad Abort Test, Mission PA-2, Post Launch Report No.
1," July 2, 1965; MSC, "Postlaunch Report for Apollo Mission
PA-2 (BP-23A)," July 29, 1965, pp. 1-1, 2-1, 3-1, and 10-1.
North American reported to MSC that no structural changes to the
spacecraft would be required for uprating the thrust of the Saturn IB's
H-1 engine from 90,718 to 92,986 kg (200,000 to 205,000 lbs). Effects on
the performance of the launch escape vehicle would be negligible.
Letter, H. G. Osbon, NAA, to NASA MSC, Attn: C. L. Taylor,
"Contract NAS 9-150, R&D for Project Apollo Spacecraft;
Spacecraft Structural Impact of Increase of H-1 Engine," June 29,
NASA formally announced the selection of six scientist-astronauts for
the Apollo program, chosen from a group nominated by America's
scientific community. Qualifications and recruiting procedures had been
worked out earlier by NASA and the National Academy of Sciences' Ad Hoc
Committee on Scientific Qualifications of Scientist-Astronauts. To be
eligible, candidates must have been born on or after August I, 1930; be
citizens of the United States; be no more than 1.83 m (6 ft) tall; and
have an educational level of a doctorate or the equivalent in
experience. The six, only one of whom was on active military service,
were Owen K. Garriott, Edward G. Gibson, Duane E. Graveline, Lt. Cdr.
Joseph P. Kerwin (USN), Frank Curtis Michel, and Harrison Schmitt.
Letter, Homer E. Newell, NASA, to Robert R. Gilruth, MSC, August 19,
1964, with attachment, "Suggested Public Announcement of the
Scientist-Astronaut Program," August 19, 1964; letter, Newell to
Harry H. Hess, NAS, August 19, 1964; NASA News Release 64-315,
"NASA Reports Some 900 Persons Interested in Scientist-Astronaut
Program," December 16, 1964; MSC News Release 64-195, December 16,
1964; MSC News Release 65-63, June 29, 1965.
Langley Research Center put into operation its 3.5 million Lunar Landing
Research Facility. The huge structure (76.2 m [250 ft] high and 121.9 m
[400 ft] long) would be used to explore techniques and to forecast
various problems of landing on the moon. The facility would enable a
test vehicle to be operated under one-sixth g conditions.
Astronautics and Aeronautics, 1965, p. 303; Michael David
Keller, Fifty Years of Flight Research: A Chronology of the
Langley Research Center, 1917-1966 (HHN-65), November 1966, p.
In a memorandum to T. Tarbox, John Ryken, Bell Aerosystems Company LLRV
Project Manager, said he understood that Dean Grimm of MSC believed
that the LLRV was not configured to have the jet engine provide
simulation of a constant-lift rocket thrust in addition to providing
the 5/6th g lift. Ryken forwarded to Tarbox a copy of a report,
"LLRV Automatic Control System Service and Maintenance
Manual," plus notes on the system in the hope that these would
help him and NASA personnel better understand the system. He also
included suggestions about reducing aerodynamic moments which Grimm
felt might interfere with LEM simulation.
Interoffice Memo, Bell Aerosystems Company, J. Ryken, Bell, to T.
Tarbox, Bell, "LLRV," June 30, 1965.