March 19, 2012

Kitty Hawk

One of the great spacecraft of the Apollo program. This particular command module is that of Apollo 14. I saw it down in Florida at the KSC. This capsule was launched on the 13th of January 1971 and spend almost exactly 9 days in space. 2 days and 18 hours were spent orbiting the moon. Apollo 14 was the first mission to have an extended stay on the moon, the astronauts spending 9.5 hours outside the lunar module on the lunar surface over the two day period.

It was on this flight that Alan Shepard became the only person to have played golf on another planet. He brought with him two golf balls and a makeshift 6 iron and hit both balls off into the distance. There is a video of him doing this actually.

Bright and shiny at launch, re entry and splashdown in the Pacific gave the burnt up color to the capsule, mainly because it actually was burnt up a bit in the atmosphere, reaching hundreds of degrees as the atmosphere tried to burn it up. It is incredible to see the actual spacecraft that went all the way around the moon...Amazing.

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