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General Discussion => Historical Spaceflight => Topic started by: AS_501 on 11/09/2017 06:09 PM

Title: Apollo 4 50th Anniversary
Post by: AS_501 on 11/09/2017 06:09 PM
Apollo buffs are reminded that today marks the 50th anniversary of Apollo 4, the first Saturn V flight, and made famous for the "All-Up" testing concept.  I can't imagine the tension level at this liftoff, especially since the F-1s had not been flight tested.  The EM1 launch will have its own measure of tension, but the SLS engines do have some service history (SRBs indirectly).

Our local paper (Pittsburgh Press) ran a 14-page Sunday advertising supplement on Apollo 4 a week prior.  It was beautifully illustrated and a nice primer for the general public on rocket science.  So why did North American Aviation run an aerospace ad in a steel town will almost no connection to the space program?  At the time we were the headquarters of Rockwell Standard which went on to merge with North American to form North American Rockwell.  I'd be curious if this ad also ran in the aerospace towns.

Eric Fischer
Pittsburgh, PA
Title: Re: Apollo 4 50th Anniversary
Post by: edkyle99 on 11/09/2017 09:54 PM
SA-501/AS-501 was an amazing achievement, fraught with risk.  Not only did it launch successfully, it also performed the entire multi-orbit mission successfully, including S-IVB restart, etc.  I suspect few expected such full inaugural success at the time.

I see Falcon Heavy Demo as its own version of Apollo 4 cross-your-fingers dicyness upcoming, though much different than the first Saturn V launch since the hardware has all flown before - just never in this configuration.  Same launch pad though!

 - Ed Kyle
Title: Re: Apollo 4 50th Anniversary
Post by: AS_501 on 11/09/2017 10:19 PM
Forgot to mention the Mother of All First-Launch/All-Up nail-biters:  STS-1, which had people on board!
Regarding Falcon Heavy, someone posted earlier that we hope the rocket gets well clear of Pad 39 before anything bad happens (per the modest expectations Elon set for this launch).
Title: Re: Apollo 4 50th Anniversary
Post by: DecoLV on 11/10/2017 02:06 AM
Just think about the contrast to today.

All-up testing... men to the moon on the third vehicle (fourth if you count 500F)...NASA was sure different then.
Title: Re: Apollo 4 50th Anniversary
Post by: Proponent on 11/10/2017 01:51 PM
Is it so different?  The plan is to send a crew around the moon on the second SLS, in an Orion that will have flown fewer times than Apollo had by the time it carried a crew.  And NASA argued in February that it could reasonably put a crew on the very first SLS mission, it would just cost more.
Title: Re: Apollo 4 50th Anniversary
Post by: DecoLV on 11/11/2017 01:46 AM
So why is NASA making SpaceX jump through so many hoops then?   :P

Title: Re: Apollo 4 50th Anniversary
Post by: Citabria on 11/21/2017 05:10 PM
Cool! The PDF has some problems, though, like out-of-order pages, duplicates, and perhaps missing glossary pages (it ends at P). I've re-ordered the pages here:
Title: Re: Apollo 4 50th Anniversary
Post by: Kansan52 on 11/21/2017 05:49 PM
So why is NASA making SpaceX jump through so many hoops then?   :P

One test flight then one crewed flight for Dragon 2 and also SLS. So it seems the same to me.
Title: Re: Apollo 4 50th Anniversary
Post by: TJL on 11/22/2017 01:28 AM
Does anyone here have a photo of the Apollo 4 spacecraft on display in the VAB in the 1971 timeframe. I was at KSC for the launch of Apollo 15 and remember seeing the Apollo 4 spacecraft on display during the KSC tour.
Thank you!