Encyclopedia Astronautica
1966.12.26 - Extravehicular activity on the Apollo AS-503 mission

Donald K. Slayton said there was some question about including extravehicular activity on the AS-503 mission, but he felt that, to make a maximum contribution to the lunar mission, one period of EVA should be included. Slayton pointed out that during the coast period (simulating lunar orbit) in the current flight plan the EVA opportunity appeared best between hour 90 and hour 100.

Two primary propulsion system firings would have been accomplished and the descent stage of the LM would still be attached.

Slayton specified that EVA should consist of a crewman exiting through the LM forward hatch and making a thorough orbital check of the LM before reentering through the same hatch. He said EVA on AS-503 would provide:

- flight experience and confidence in LM environmental-control-system performance during cabin depressurization;

- flight confidence in the Block II International Latex Corp. pressure garment assemblies;

- orbital time-line approximation of cabin depressurization times, forward hatch operation, flight crew egress procedures, and LM entry following a simulated lunar EVA;

- visual inspection and photography of LM landing gear for possible damage during withdrawal from the S-IVB stage;

- external inspection and photography of the LM to record window and antenna contamination caused by SLA panel pyrotechnic deployment;

- inspection and photography of descent engine skirt and adjacent areas for evidence of damage from two descent propulsion system firings;

- inspection and photography of possible damage to the upper LM caused by the SM reaction control system during withdrawal;

- possible additional data regarding EVA metabolic rates, etc., as applied to the Block II pressure garment assembly; and

- additional orbital confidence in the portable life support system operational procedures.

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