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Left to right: McDivitt, Scott, Schweickart Apollo program

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Apollo 9
Apollo 9
was the third manned mission in the United States Apollo space program and the first flight of the Command/Service Module (CSM) with the Lunar Module (LM, pronounced "lem"). Its three-person crew, consisting of Commander James McDivitt, Command Module Pilot David Scott, and Lunar Module Pilot Rusty Schweickart, spent ten days in low Earth orbit testing several aspects critical to landing on the Moon, including the LM engines, backpack life support systems, navigation systems, and docking maneuvers. The mission was the second manned launch of a Saturn V
Saturn V
rocket. After launching on March 3, 1969, the crewmen performed the first manned flight of a LM, the first docking and extraction of a LM, two spacewalks (EVA), and the second docking of two manned spacecraft—two months after the Soviets performed a spacewalk crew transfer between Soyuz 4
Soyuz 4
and Soyuz 5. The mission proved the LM worthy of manned spaceflight. Further tests on the Apollo 10
Apollo 10
mission would prepare the LM for its ultimate goal, landing on the Moon. They returned to Earth on March 13, 1969.

Contents

1 Crew

1.1 Backup crew 1.2 Support crew 1.3 Flight directors

2 Mission parameters

2.1 LM - CSM docking 2.2 EVA

3 Mission background 4 Mission highlights 5 Mission insignia 6 Summary of maneuvers 7 Pictures 8 Spacecraft
Spacecraft
location 9 See also 10 References 11 Bibliography 12 External links

Crew[edit]

Position[3] Astronaut

Commander James A. McDivitt Second and last spaceflight

Command Module Pilot David R. Scott Second spaceflight

Lunar Module Pilot Russell L. Schweickart Only spaceflight

Backup crew[edit]

Position[3] Astronaut

Commander Charles Conrad, Jr.

Command Module Pilot Richard F. Gordon Jr.

Lunar Module Pilot Clifton C. Williams, Jr.

This crew became the prime crew on Apollo 12. *

* Williams was killed in October 1967 when the T-38 he was flying crashed near Tallahassee, and was replaced with Alan L. Bean. Support crew[edit] The support crew for Apollo 9
Apollo 9
consisted of:[4]

Stuart A. Roosa (ascent CAPCOM) Fred W. Haise, Jr. Jack R. Lousma Edgar D. Mitchell Alfred M. Worden

Flight directors[edit]

Gene Kranz, White team Gerry Griffin, Gold team Pete Frank, Orange team

Mission parameters[edit] At orbital insertion (16:11:15 UTC, March 3, 1969):

Mass: CSM 48,564 pounds (22,028 kg); LM 32,034 pounds (14,530 kg) Perigee: 102.3 nautical miles (189.5 km) Apogee: 103.9 nautical miles (192.4 km) Inclination: 32.57° Period: 88.64 min

LM - CSM docking[edit]

Undocked: March 7, 1969 - 12:39:36 UTC Re-docked:March 7, 1969 - 19:02:26 UTC

EVA[edit]

Schweickart - EVA - LM forward hatch

Start: March 6, 1969, 16:45:00 UTC End: March 6, 1969, 17:52:00 UTC Duration: 1 hour, 07 minutes

Scott - Standup EVA - CM side hatch

Start: March 6, 1969, 17:01:00 UTC End: March 6, 1969, 18:02:00 UTC Duration: 1 hour, 01 minute

Mission background[edit]

McDivitt, Scott and Schweickart train for the AS-258 mission in the first block II Command Module, wearing early versions of the block II pressure suit

In April 1966, McDivitt, Scott, and Schweickart were selected by Deke Slayton as the second Apollo crew, as backup to Gus Grissom, Ed White, and Roger Chaffee
Roger Chaffee
for the first manned Earth orbital test flight of the block I Command/Service Module,[5] designated AS-204 expected to fly in late 1966. This was to be followed by a second block I flight, AS-205, to be crewed by Wally Schirra, Donn Eisele, and Walter Cunningham. The third manned mission, designated AS-207/208, was planned to fly the block II Command Module and the Lunar Module in Earth orbit, launched on separate Saturn IBs, with a crew to be named. However, delays in the block I CSM development pushed AS-204 into 1967. By December 1966, the original AS-205 mission was cancelled, Schirra's crew was named as Grissom's backup, and McDivitt's crew was promoted to prime crew for the LM test mission,[6] re-designated AS-205/208. On January 26, 1967, they were training for this flight, expected to occur in late 1967, in the first block II Command Module 101 at the North American plant in Downey, California.[7] The next day, Grissom's crew were conducting a launch-pad test for their planned February 21 mission, which they named Apollo 1, when a fire broke out in the cabin, killing all three men and putting an 18-month hold on the manned program while the block II Command Module (CM) and A7L pressure suit were redesigned for safety. As it turned out, a 1967 launch of AS-205/208 would have been impossible even absent the Apollo 1
Apollo 1
accident, as problems with the LM delayed its first unmanned test flight until January 1968. NASA
NASA
was able to use the 18-month hiatus to catch up with development and unmanned testing of the LM and the Saturn V
Saturn V
launch vehicle.[8] By October 1967, planning for manned flights resumed, with Apollo 7 being the first Earth orbit CSM flight (now known as the C mission) in October 1968 given to Schirra's crew, and McDivitt's mission (now known as the D Mission) following as Apollo 8
Apollo 8
in December 1968, using a single Saturn V
Saturn V
instead of the two Saturn IBs. This would be followed by a higher Earth orbit flight (E Mission), to be crewed by Frank Borman, Michael Collins, and William Anders
William Anders
in early 1969. However, LM problems again prevented it from being ready for the D mission by December, so NASA
NASA
officials created another mission for Apollo 8
Apollo 8
using the Saturn V
Saturn V
to launch only the CSM on the first manned flight to orbit the Moon, and the E mission was cancelled as unnecessary. Slayton asked McDivitt and Borman which mission they preferred to fly; McDivitt wanted to fly the LM, while Borman volunteered for the pioneering lunar flight. Therefore, Slayton swapped the crews, and McDivitt's crew flew Apollo 9. The crew swap also affected who would be the first crew to land on the Moon; when the crews for Apollo 8
Apollo 8
and 9 were swapped, their backup crews were also swapped. Since the rule of thumb was for backup crews to fly as prime crew three missions later, this put Neil Armstrong's crew (Borman's backup) in position for the first landing mission Apollo 11
Apollo 11
instead of Pete Conrad's crew, who made the second landing on Apollo 12. Mission highlights[edit]

Apollo 9
Apollo 9
launches from Kennedy Space Center, March 3, 1969

Apollo 9
Apollo 9
was the first space test of the complete Apollo spacecraft, including the third critical piece of Apollo hardware besides the Command/Service Module and the Saturn V
Saturn V
launch vehicle—the Lunar Module. It was also the first space docking of two vehicles with an internal crew transfer between them. For ten days, the astronauts put both Apollo spacecraft through their paces in Earth orbit, including an undocking and redocking of the LM with the CSM, just as the landing mission crew would perform in lunar orbit. Apollo 9
Apollo 9
gave proof that the Apollo spacecraft were up to this critical task, on which the lives of lunar landing crews would depend. For this and all subsequent Apollo flights, the crews were allowed to name their own spacecraft (the last spacecraft to have been named was Gemini 3). The gangly LM was named Spider, and the CSM was labeled Gumdrop because of the Command Module's shape, and because of the blue wrapping in which the craft arrived at Kennedy Space Center. These names were required as radio call signs when the vehicles flew independently. Schweickart and Scott performed an EVA—Schweickart checked out the new Apollo spacesuit, the first to have its own life support system rather than being dependent on an umbilical connection to the spacecraft, while Scott filmed him from the Command Module hatch. Schweickart was due to carry out a more extensive set of activities to test the suit, and demonstrate that it was possible for astronauts to perform an EVA from the Lunar Module to the Command Module in an emergency, but as he had been suffering from space sickness the extra tests were scratched.

Apollo 9
Apollo 9
approaches splashdown in the Atlantic Ocean, March 13, 1969

McDivitt and Schweickart later test-flew the LM, and practiced separation and docking maneuvers in Earth orbit. They flew the LM up to 111 miles (179 km) from Gumdrop, using the engine on the descent stage to propel them originally, before jettisoning it and using the ascent stage to return. This test flight represented the first flight of a manned spacecraft that was not equipped to reenter the Earth's atmosphere. The splashdown point was 23°15′N, 67°56′W, 160 nautical miles (290 km) east of the Bahamas and within sight of the recovery ship USS Guadalcanal. Apollo 9
Apollo 9
was the last spacecraft to splash down in the Atlantic Ocean. The Command Module was displayed at the Michigan Space and Science Center, Jackson, Michigan, until April 2004 when the center closed.[9] In May 2004, it was moved to the San Diego
San Diego
Aerospace Museum (now named the San Diego
San Diego
Air & Space Museum). The LM ascent stage orbit decayed on October 23, 1981, the LM descent stage (1969-018D) orbit decayed March 22, 1969. The S-IVB
S-IVB
stage J-2 engine was restarted after Lunar Module extraction and propelled the stage into solar orbit by burning to depletion. The Saturn IVB third stage became a derelict object where it would continue to orbit the Sun for many years. As of November 2014[update], it remains in orbit.[10] Mission insignia[edit]

Apollo 9
Apollo 9
space-flown silver Robbins medallion

The circular patch shows a drawing of a Saturn V
Saturn V
rocket with the letters USA on it. To its right, an Apollo CSM is shown next to an LM, with the CSM's nose pointed at the "front door" of the LM rather than at its top docking port. The CSM is trailing rocket fire in a circle. The crew's names are along the top edge of the circle, with APOLLO IX at the bottom. The "D" in McDivitt's name is filled with red to mark that this was the "D mission" in the alphabetic sequence of Apollo missions. The patch was designed by Allen Stevens of Rockwell International.[11] Summary of maneuvers[edit]

T + Time Event Burn Time Delta-Velocity Orbit

T + 00:00:00 Lift-off

T + 00:02:14.34 S-IC
S-IC
center engine cut-off 141 s

T + 00:02:42.76 S-IC
S-IC
engine cut-off 169 s

T + 00:02:45.16 S-II
S-II
ignition

T + 00:03:13.5 S-II
S-II
skirt separation

T + 00:03:18.3 LES jettison

T + 00:08:56.22 S-II
S-II
cut-off

T + 00:08:57 S-II
S-II
cutoff + separation, S-IVB
S-IVB
ignition

T + 00:11:04.66 S-IVB
S-IVB
cutoff + orbital insertion 127.4 s

191.3 × 189.5 km

T + 02:41:16 CSM/ S-IVB
S-IVB
separation

T + 03:01:59.3 CSM/LM docking

T + 04:08:09 Spacecraft/ S-IVB
S-IVB
separation

T + 05:59:01.07 First Service Propulsion System (SPS) test 5.1 s +10.4 m/s 234.1 × 200.7 km

T + 22:13:04.07 Second SPS test 110 s +259.2 m/s 351.5 × 199.5 km

T + 25:17:39.27 Third SPS test 281.6 s +782.6 m/s 503.4 × 202.6 km

T + 28:24:41.37 Fourth SPS test 28.2 s -91.45 m/s 502.8 × 202.4 km

T + 49:41:34.46 Docked DPS test 369.7 s -530.1 m/s 499.3 × 202.2 km

T + 54:26:12.27 Fifth SPS test 43.3 s -175.6 m/s 239.3 × 229.3 km

T + 92:39:36 CSM/LM undocking

T + 93:02:54 CSM separation maneuver 10.9 s -1.5 m/s

T + 93:47:35.4 LM Descent Propulsion System
Descent Propulsion System
(DPS) phasing maneuver 18.6 s +27.6 m/s 253.5 × 207 km

T + 95:39:08.6 LM DPS insertion maneuver 22.2 s +13.1 m/s 257.2 × 248.2 km

T + 96:16:06.54 LM concentric sequence initiation maneuver/Descent stage jettison 30.3 s -12.2 m/s 255.2 × 208.9 km

T + 96:58:15 LM Ascent Propulsion System (APS) constant delta height maneuver 2.9 s -12.6 m/s 215.6 × 207.2 km

T + 97:57:59 LM terminal phase finalization maneuver 34.7 s +6.8 m/s 232.8 × 208.5 km

T + 99:02:26 CSM/LM docking

T + 101:22:45 LM ascent stage jettison

T + 101:32:44 Post-jettison CSM separation maneuver 7.2 s +0.9 m/s 235.7 × 224.6 km

T + 101:53:15.4 LM APS burn to depletion 350 s +1,643.2 m/s 6,934.4 × 230.6 km

T + 123:25:06.97 Sixth SPS test 1.29 s -11.5 m/s 222.6 × 195.2 km

T + 169:39:00.36 Seventh SPS test 25 s +199.6 m/s 463.4 × 181.1 km

T + 240:31:14.84 Deorbit burn (SPS) 11.6 s -99.1 m/s 442.2 × -7.8 km

T + 240:36:03.8 SM jettison

T + 241:00:54 Splashdown

Pictures[edit]

The Lunar Module awaits extraction from Apollo 9's S-IVB
S-IVB
stage

David Scott
David Scott
stands in the opened Command Module hatch

Rusty Schweickart
Rusty Schweickart
stands on the porch of Spider during his extravehicular activity on the fourth day of the mission

Apollo 9
Apollo 9
LM Spider

LM Spider over ocean

The LM Spider ascent stage on the fifth day of the mission

Spacecraft
Spacecraft
location[edit] The Apollo 9
Apollo 9
Command Module Gumdrop (1969-018A) is on display at the San Diego
San Diego
Air & Space Museum, San Diego, California. Its Service Module (SM) was jettisoned shortly after the deorbit burn and re-entered the atmosphere. The ascent stage of LM-3 Spider (1969-018C) re-entered on October 23, 1981.[12] The descent stage of LM-3 Spider (1969-018D) re-entered on March 22, 1969.[12] The upper stage of the Apollo 9
Apollo 9
Saturn V, S-IVB-504N, (1969-018B) remains in heliocentric (solar) orbit as of 2014[update].[10] See also[edit]

Extravehicular activity List of spacewalks and moonwalks 1965–1999 Splashdown

References[edit]  This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

^ Orloff, Richard W. (September 2004) [First published 2000]. "Table of Contents". Apollo by the Numbers: A Statistical Reference. NASA History Division, Office of Policy and Plans. NASA
NASA
History Series. Washington, D.C.: NASA. ISBN 0-16-050631-X. LCCN 00061677. NASA
NASA
SP-2000-4029. Retrieved June 27, 2013.  ^ McDowell, Jonathan. "SATCAT". Jonathan's Space Pages. Retrieved March 23, 2014.  ^ a b " Apollo 9
Apollo 9
Crew". The Apollo Program. Washington, D.C.: National Air and Space Museum. Retrieved 10 May 2015.  ^ "Preparations for Launch". NASA. Retrieved December 29, 2017.  ^ "'Open End' Orbit Planned for Apollo". The Pittsburgh Press. Pittsburgh, PA. United Press International. August 4, 1966. p. 20. Retrieved November 11, 2010.  ^ Brooks, Courtney G.; Grimwood, James M.; Swenson, Loyd S., Jr. (1979). "Preparations for the First Manned Apollo Mission". Chariots for Apollo: A History of Manned Lunar Spacecraft. NASA
NASA
History Series. Foreword by Samuel C. Phillips. Washington, D.C.: Scientific and Technical Information Branch, NASA. ISBN 0-486-46756-2. OCLC 4664449. NASA
NASA
SP-4205. Retrieved January 29, 2008.  ^ "Apollo Image Gallery: Early Apollo". Project Apollo Archive. Kipp Teague. Retrieved August 3, 2010.  ^ Brooks, Courtney G.; Grimwood, James M.; Swenson, Loyd S., Jr. (1979). "Apollo 5: The Lunar Module's Debut". Chariots for Apollo: A History of Manned Lunar Spacecraft. NASA
NASA
History Series. Foreword by Samuel C. Phillips. Washington, D.C.: Scientific and Technical Information Branch, NASA. ISBN 0-486-46756-2. OCLC 4664449. NASA
NASA
SP-4205. Retrieved January 29, 2008.  ^ "Jackson, MI - Michigan Space Center (Closed)". www.roadsideamerica.com.  ^ a b "Saturn S-IVB-504N - Satellite Information". Satellite database. Heavens-Above. Retrieved September 23, 2013.  ^ Hengeveld, Ed (May 20, 2008). "The man behind the Moon mission patches". collectSPACE. Retrieved July 18, 2009.  "A version of this article was published concurrently in the British Interplanetary Society's Spaceflight magazine." ^ a b "Apollo 9". National Space Science Data Center. NASA. Retrieved April 7, 2014. 

Bibliography[edit]

Baker, David (1982). The History of Manned Space Flight (1st ed.). New York: Crown Publishers. ISBN 0-517-54377-X. 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Apollo 9.

"Apollo 9" at Encyclopedia Astronautica NSSDC Master Catalog at NASA

NASA
NASA
reports

Apollo 9
Apollo 9
Press Kit (PDF), NASA, Release No. 69-29, February 23, 1969 "Table 2-37. Apollo 9
Apollo 9
Characteristics" from NASA
NASA
Historical Data Book: Volume III: Programs and Projects 1969–1978 by Linda Neuman Ezell, NASA
NASA
History Series, NASA
NASA
SP-4012, (1988) "Appendix 6 - Crews and Support for Manned Apollo Flights". The Apollo Spacecraft: A Chronology. Volume IV. NASA. 1978. OCLC 23818. NASA SP-4009. Archived from the original on February 5, 2008. Retrieved January 29, 2008.  " Apollo 9
Apollo 9
flight plan AS-504/CSM-104/LM-3 Final Report" (PDF) by J. V. Rivers, NASA, February 1969 The Apollo Spacecraft: A Chronology NASA, NASA
NASA
SP-4009 "Apollo Program Summary Report" (PDF), NASA, JSC-09423, April 1975

Multimedia

Apollo 9: Three To Make Ready Official NASA
NASA
documentary film (1969) Apollo 9
Apollo 9
16mm onboard film part 1, part 2 raw footage taken from Apollo 9 Apollo 9: The Space Duet of Spider & Gumdrop Official NASA documentary film (1969), OCLC 7682161 Apollo 9
Apollo 9
images at NASA'S Kennedy Space Center Apollo launch and mission videos at ApolloTV.net

v t e

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v t e

← 1968  ·  Orbital launches in 1969  ·  1970 →

Venera 5
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Venera 6
Kosmos 263 Soyuz 4
Soyuz 4
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Soyuz 5
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Luna E-8 No.201
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Mariner 6
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ESSA-9
Kosmos 267 Apollo 9
Apollo 9
OPS 4248 Kosmos 268 Kosmos 269 Kosmos 270 Kosmos 271 Kosmos 272 OV1-17 · OV1-18 · OV1-19 · Orbiscal 2 OPS 3722 · OPS 2285 Kosmos 273 Kosmos 274 Meteor-1 No.12 2M No.521 Mariner 7
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Kosmos 275 2M No.522 Kosmos 276 Kosmos 277 Kosmos 278 Molniya-1 No.16 OPS 3148 Nimbus 3 · SECOR 13 Kosmos 279 OPS 5310 Kosmos 280 OPS 1101 · OPS 1721 Kosmos 281 Apollo 10
Apollo 10
Kosmos 282 Intelsat III F-4 OPS 6909 · OPS 6911 · ERS-29 · ERS-26 · OV5-9 Kosmos 283 Kosmos 284 Kosmos 285 OPS 1077 OGO-6
OGO-6
Luna E-8-5 No.402
Luna E-8-5 No.402
Kosmos 286 Explorer 41 Kosmos 287 Kosmos 288 Biosatellite 3
Biosatellite 3
STV-2 7K-L1S No.5 Kosmos 289 Luna 15
Luna 15
Apollo 11
Apollo 11
Kosmos 290 Molniya-1 No.18 OPS 1127 DS-P1-Yu No.23 OPS 3654 Intelsat III F-5 OPS 8285 Kosmos 291 Zond 7
Zond 7
OSO-6 · PAC-1 ATS-5 Kosmos 292 Kosmos 293 Kosmos 294 Kosmos 295 OPS 7807 Pioneer E · ERS-32 Kosmos 296 Kosmos 297 Kosmos 298 Kosmos 299 Unnamed OPS 3531 · OPS 4710 Kosmos 300
Kosmos 300
Kosmos 301 OPS 7613 · NRL PL-161 · NRL PL-162 · NRL PL-163 · NRL PL-164 · NRL PL-176 · Timation 2 · Tempsat 2 · SOICAL Cone · SOICAL Cylinder ESRO-1B Meteor-1 No.15 Soyuz 6
Soyuz 6
Soyuz 7
Soyuz 7
Soyuz 8
Soyuz 8
Interkosmos 1 Kosmos 302 Kosmos 303 Kosmos 304 Kosmos 305
Kosmos 305
Kosmos 306 Kosmos 307 OPS 8455 Kosmos 308 Azur Kosmos 309 Apollo 12
Apollo 12
Kosmos 310 Skynet 1A
Skynet 1A
Kosmos 311 Kosmos 312 7K-L1e No.1 Kosmos 313 OPS 6617 Kosmos 314 Kosmos 315 Kosmos 316 Kosmos 317 Interkosmos 2 Unnamed

Payloads are separated by bullets ( · ), launches by pipes ( ). Manned flights are indicated in bold text. Uncatalogued launch failures are listed in italics. Payloads deployed from other spacecraft are denoted in brackets.

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