How to become the astronaut? 5. Lunar problems
People fly to space not only to sit at space stations. The following big step for all mankind - landing to other planets, and, first of all, expedition to the Moon. Americans spent the incredible mass of forces and means to win space race and the first to reach the Moon. And they managed it. On July 24, 1969 lunar module of the ship “ Apollo - 11 “ piloted by Neill Armstrong and Michael Collins, made landing in the Sea of Tranquility.
Before the landing astronauts found out that they sit down in a crater of the size of a football field with a large number of stones which easily could punch the thin aluminum bottom of the module. The crew took away the lunar module aside. Almost all reserve of fuel of a landing step was spent for maneuvering. Proceed flight of 20 more seconds, and the module automatically would start, without having concerned the Moon.
After flight “ Apollo - 11 “ the Moon was visited by five more ships, and ten more people wandered about lunar dust. Not everything passed smoothly in these flights. When flying “ Apollo - 14 “ there were difficulties with a redocking of the lunar module. After three unsuccessful attempts the pilot of the command module Ruza decided to dock, having dispersed at the greatest possible speed. From strong blow the docking knot, at last, worked. When flying “ Apollo - 15 “ the module hit when landing, sustained damage and strongly tilted. And to crew “ Apollo - 16 “ simply - it was extremely lucky. When astronauts for the first time came to a surface of the Moon and looked round, it turned out that in three meters from the landing module there was a hole of 10 meters in depth, and near a rack of the chassis the huge stone lay.
Flight to the Moon of the American " spaceship was the most drama incident in space; Apollo - 13 “. Many saw the feature film “ Apolo - 13 “.
Danger hid in the tank of oxygen No. 2. Some of its damages remained unnoticed, and in 56 hours after start he exploded, having damaged at the same time the tank No. 1. “ Apollo - 13 “ was left almost without power supply, lighting, water supply. Two of three generators giving the electric power to the ship were damaged. The remained batteries was are small and necessary for a landing. Oxygen promptly expired from both tanks. It occurred at the Moon, at distance of 360 000 kilometers from Earth. The crew felt strong blow and vibration. Jack Suidzher told the first to Earth - “ Houston, we have O`key of a problem " here;. Here not before disembarkation to the Moon to return to Earth.
Having disconnected all systems of the command module, astronauts got over in the independent lunar module and used its engines for correction of a trajectory of flight. The module was designed and calculated on 45 - hour service life, and it was necessary to hold on twice longer. Everything that is possible, was disconnected and consumption of energy is reduced five times. The main issue of life support was connected with water. It became clear that the ship will remain without water approximately in five hours prior to a landing. However mechanisms of the ship had to sustain.
Temperature reduced to zero, and on walls hoarfrost acted. The dream was almost impossible from - for cold weather. Before landing it was necessary to return to the command module and to prepare the lander for atmospheric entry of Earth. In the switched-off module moisture was condensed. Possibly, the same was also in control panels. Inclusion could lead something to short circuit. But thanks to perfection of the equipment of it it did not happen. The charge of chemical batteries was hardly enough for start of the major systems of the module. The crew splashed down in the Pacific Ocean on one word of honor.