When the crippled Apollo 13 spacecraft returned to Earth following their aborted moon mission in 1970, no one really knew if the command module would come in at the proper angle to avoid burning up in the atmosphere or even skip off the atmosphere and be bounced out into space. If the CM did skip off, the crew might be destined to spend a fatal eternity out in space. Or would they? Author Andrew Chaikin, who wrote the Apollo chronicle “A Man on the Moon,” asked Analytical Graphics lnc. (AGI) to do a computer simulation of what would have happened, and they found things could have been much different than originally thought. Watch this video, narrated by Chaikin to find out.
April 2010 will be the 40th anniversary of Apollo 13.
Video courtesy of Analytical Graphics, Inc. (www.agi.com).