Click here for the excellent NASA 1970 Publication EP-76 Apollo 13 - "Houston, we've got a problem." [No longer in print but available here in html format]. For the .pdf version click here.
The popularity of the movie APOLLO 13 among students provides teachers with a learning tool. NASA's Apollo 13 educational resources are available for lessons about space technology. This home page links to items contained in the SPACE EDUCATORS' HANDBOOK about Apollo 13. No links on this page are remote to the SPACE EDUCATORS' HANDBOOK site.
Called "NASA's Finest Hour," the rescue of the stranded Apollo 13 astronauts the week of April 11-17, 1970 is unique in the history of manned spaceflight. Because original command module pilot T.K. Mattingly was exposed to measles, he was replaced a few days prior to launch by astronaut Jack Swigert. This left no time for another official crew photograph with Swigert instead of Mattingly. Through the technology of morphing, the above movie shows an altered official crew photo which includes the actual Apollo 13 command module pilot Jack Swigert. Listen carefully to the audio which accompanies the movie. Should the Hollywood production APOLLO 13 have quoted Commander Jim Lovell as saying, "Houston, we have a problem?"
Removal of Carbon Dioxide was a concern. There were enough lithium hydroxide canisters, which remove carbon dioxide from the spacecraft, but the square canisters from the Command Module were not compatible with the round openings in the Lunar Module environmental system. There were four cartridge from the LM, and four from the backpacks, counting backups. However, the LM was designed to support two men for two days and was being asked to care for three men nearly four days. After a day and a half in the LM a warning light showed that the carbon dioxide had built up to a dangerous level. Mission Control devised a way to attach the CM canisters to the LM system by using plastic bags, cardboard, and tape- all materials carried on board. (by James A. Lovell, from Apollo Expeditions to the Moon, edited by Edgar M. Cortright, NASA SP; 350, Washington, DC, 1975 )
Four hours before landing, the crew shed the service module; Mission Control had insisted on retaining it until then because everyone feared what the cold of space might do to the unsheltered CM heat shield. Photos of the Service Module showed one whole panel missing, and wreckage hanging out, it was a sorry mess as it drifted away. (by James A. Lovell, from Apollo Expeditions to the Moon, edited by Edgar M. Cortright, NASA SP; 350, Washington, DC, 1975 )