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Space History Photo: Apollo Launch Escape System in Wind Tunnel

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A technician mounts an Apollo Launch Escape System model in the Unitary Wind Tunnel. (Image credit: NASA.)

In this historical photo from the U.S. space agency, a technician mounts a model of the Apollo Launch Escape System (LES) in the Unitary Wind Tunnel at the NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California. The LES was a tower like structure consisting of four solid propellent motors mounted atop the Apollo Command Module.

In the event of a contingency, (booster failure or some other imminent failure) the LES would be commanded to ignite, subsequently removing the Command Module from the Saturn launch vehicle.

Each weekday, SPACE.com looks back at the history of spaceflight through photos (archive).

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The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is the U.S. government agency in charge of the civilian space program as well as aeronautics and aerospace research. Founded in 1958, NASA is a civilian space agency aimed at exploring the universe with space telescopes,  satellites, robotic spacecraft, astronauts and more. The space agency has 10 major centers based across the U.S. and launches robotic and crewed missions from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral Florida. It's astronaut corps is based at the Johnson Space Center in Houston. To follow NASA's latest mission, follow the space agency on Twitter or any other social channel, of visit: nasa.gov