Encyclopedia Astronautica
1967.04.17 - Requirements of the Apollo flight program before the first lunar landing mission


A meeting at MSC considered requirements of the Apollo flight program before the first lunar landing mission.

Present were C. H. Perrine, MSC Mission Operations Division, and Christopher C. Kraft, Jr., Sigurd A. Sjoberg, John D. Hodge, Eugene F. Kranz, Morris V. Jenkins, and Robert E. Ernull, all of Flight Operations Directorate. Most significant opinions resulting from the meeting were:

- Demonstrations of extravehicular transfer and CSM rescue of LM were not considered prerequisite to manned LM earth-orbital operations separated from the CSM.
- A rendezvous exercise on Apollo 7 (CSM 101) with a "pod" would be worth attempting some time after the first day of the mission.
- Unmanned burns of the LM ascent and descent propulsions systems, including fire-in-the-hole burns, were considered prerequisites to manning those functions. This prerequisite included manning of descent propulsion system burns.
- Three manned earth-orbital flights of the CSM and LM in joint operations, plus a single CSM-alone flight, were considered the minimum number of missions in the primary program before the first potential lunar mission.
- Although a lunar orbit mission should not be a step in the primary program, it should be part of the contingency plan in the event the CSM achieved lunar-mission capability before the LM did. The gains in operational experience were considered sufficient to justify the risk of such a mission.
- Saturn V launch vehicles should be manned (i.e., should launch manned spacecraft) as soon as possible.
- There was some question about the "manability" of LM-2.

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