Encyclopedia Astronautica
1967.11.16 - Mission rules issued for beach impact for the Apollo 7


MSC Flight Operations Directorate issued mission rules concerning beach impact for the Apollo 7 mission.

The Directorate referred to minutes of the Near-Pad Abort Meeting, dated September 26, which said the possibility of injury to the crew should it impact on land near Complex 34 necessitated mission rules prohibiting spacecraft launch in wind conditions that would cause a land impact after an abort. A satisfactory means of escape "must be provided to the crew while in the spacecraft during pad tests when wind conditions prohibit pad aborts due to possible beach impact." Mission rules developed were:

- An integrated launch abort trajectory would be conducted at MSC before the launch, using the actual measured launch-day wind profile for computing impact points.

- Spacecraft launch would not be attempted if beach impacts were predicted before 15 seconds ground elapsed time (GET).

- Launch would be permitted for predicted beach impacts occurring after 15 seconds GET provided the total time that the impact point was on land was no greater than 5 seconds.

- If the wind conditions became marginal during countdown before the flight crew entered the spacecraft and if weather predictions indicated that the beach impact constraints would be violated at planned liftoff time, crew entry would be delayed until wind measurements indicated a trend that would allow a safe launch. And

- if at any time after flight crew entry the measured wind conditions indicated a beach impact for a pad abort, the access arm would not be retracted until after the winds were determined to be safe as confirmed by a balloon release.

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