Fifty years after Apollo 13, a vintage documentary from the National Archives takes us back to one of the most iconic human spaceflight missions of all time.
Remembered as a "successful failure," the mission faced a number of life-threatening obstacles, including an oxygen tank explosion 56 hours into the mission and increasing carbon dioxide levels in the lunar module that the astronauts used as a life raft. The astronauts and NASA Mission Control back on Earth had to work quickly and creatively to save the crew and prevent complete disaster.
You can see a full version here or watch part 1 below.
Created by the National Archives and Records Administration, this documentary "emphasizes the Mission Control and spacecraft teamwork that overcame the life-or-death problems of Apollo 13, as well as the worldwide reaction to the crisis," according to the National Archives.
You can watch part 2 below.
In this film, you can hear and see not only the real moments from the mission but also interviews with the astronauts after the mission.
For instance, you can hear Swigert talking about the vibrations he felt when the crew heard the loud "bang" of the oxygen-tank explosion. The film captures the tense emotions and tenuous circumstances that these teams fought through to get Swigert and his crewmembers, commander Jim Lovell and Fred Haise, home safely.
To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 13 mission, NASA created a new documentary on the flight. Called "Apollo 13: Home Safe," the 30-minute program looks back at Apollo 13, its legacy and its lessons for future moon missions. You can watch that in its entirety below.
- Apollo 13 50th anniversary exhibit to launch new space rental service
- Failure was not an option: NASA's Apollo 13 mission of survival in pictures
- Committee waves off landing Apollo lunar module on new $1 coin