Apollo 13 on the pad

Apollo 13 Mission Library

NASA's first crisis in space.
April 1970
James Lovell, Fred Haise, Jack Swigert


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Lost Moon
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Lost Moon
by James Lovell, Apollo 13 Commander

Out of the seven Apollo expeditions to land on the moon, six of the efforts succeeded outstandingly and one failed. Lost Moon is the story of the failure and the incredible heroism of the three astronauts who brought their crippled vehicle back to earth. This account--written by James Lovell, commander of the mission, and his talented coauthor Jeffrey Kluger, captures the high drama of that unique event and is told in the vernacular of the men in the sky and on the ground who masterminded this triumph of heroism, intellectual brilliance, and raw courage.
Basis for the movie "Apollo 13"
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Thirteen - The Apollo Flight That Failed
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Thirteen: The Apollo Flight That Failed

On April 13, 1970, some 205,000 miles from the Earth, an explosion rocked the moon-bound Apollo 13, taking out both engines of the command module and crippling the life-support system. Guided by the ground crew in Houston, the crew took refuge in the lunar module and used its engines, almost in the fashion of an outboard motor, to maneuver the craft around the moon and back toward Earth. With temperatures in the module below freezing, water in short supply, and one crew member seriously ill, the astronauts and the ground crew struggled to manipulate machines into doing things they were never meant to do. Long unavailable, Thirteen: The Apollo Flight That Failed is a riveting, minute-by-minute account of the only manned NASA mission to have malfunctioned outside the Earth's orbit. Henry Cooper takes readers behind the scenes in this story of unprecedented crisis that severely tested NASA's button-down ethic of the time - forcing technological improvisation on an organization built on caution and procedure.
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Apollo 13 - The Movie
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Apollo 13 - VIDEO (Movie starring Tom Hanks as James Lovell)

NASA's worst nightmare turned into one of the space agency's most heroic moments in 1970, when the Apollo 13 crew was forced to hobble home in a disabled capsule after an explosion seriously damaged the moon-bound spacecraft. Tom Hanks, Kevin Bacon, and Bill Paxton play (respectively) astronauts James Lovell, Jack Swigert, and Fred Haise in director Ron Howard's intense, painstakingly authentic docudrama. The Apollo 13 crew and Houston-based mission controllers race against time and heavy odds to return the damaged spacecraft safely to Earth from a distance of 205,500 miles. Using state-of-the-art special effects and ingenious filmmaking techniques, Howard and his stellar cast and crew build nail-biting tension while maintaining close fidelity to the facts. The result is a fitting tribute to the Apollo 13 mission and one of the biggest box-office hits of 1995.
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