AHP’s NASA T-38 has an illustrious history. Jim Lovell, Fred Haise and Jack Swigert (Apollo 13) all flew it during their NASA careers.
Today marks the 50th anniversary of a near-fatal accident aboard NASA’s Apollo 13 spacecraft, a mission meant to be the third human landing on the moon’s surface. Known as the Apollo program’s “successful failure,” an electrical short two days after launch caused an oxygen tank on the craft’s service module to explode, forcing Commander Jim Lovell and astronauts Jack Swigert and Fred Haise to abort the lunar landing. As the crew retreated to the lunar module, conserving power in the command module for reentry, an improvised plan was drawn up that would send the spacecraft around the far side of the moon before being slingshot back toward Earth. At their farthest location, Lovell’s crew was 248,000 miles from the Earth’s surface, a record that still stands today. All three survived a dramatic reentry, with tens of millions watching the splashdown in the South Pacific Ocean (see video). News clip from 1440 Newsletter.