Thousands of workers labored at Kennedy Space Center around the clock, seven days a week, for half a year to prepare for the liftoff of Apollo 11. This is the story of what went on during those hectic six months. Countdown to a Moon Launch provides an in-depth look at the carefully choreographed workflow for an Apollo mission at KSC. Using the Apollo 11 mission as an example, readers will learn what went on day by day to transform partially completed stages and crates of parts into a ready-to-fly Saturn V. Firsthand accounts of launch pad accidents, near misses, suspected sabotage, and last-minute changes to hardware are told by more than 70 NASA employees and its contractors. A companion to Rocket Ranch, it includes many diagrams and photographs, some never before published, to illustrate all aspects of the process. NASA's groundbreaking use of computers for testing and advanced management techniques are also covered in detail. This book will demystify the question of how NASA could build and launch Apollo missions using 1960s technology. You'll discover that there was no magic involved - just an abundance of discipline, willpower, and creativity.
Jonathan H. Ward
1st ed. 2015
193 black & white illustrations, 78 colo
193 black & white illustrations, 78 colo
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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Great reading! As an astronaut and history buff, I thought I knew a lot about the Apollo program until I read this book - it provides another perspective on the flight of the Eagle. I highly recommend it as a well-written account that pulls together a wide range of engineering & technical material in an organized & flowing manner. This is the detailed story of the building and launching of Apollo 11 as told by many of the engineers, builders and workers. The author spent hundreds of hours with former workers across the country, many of whom were never before interviewed. It is written in timeline fashion, with chapters counting down to launch while reviewing the processes, events and construction in a concise and logical manner. Diverse topics are explained and brought together with frequent quotes and anecdotes from some of the thousands of people at Cape Canaveral. Topics covered include the expected background on building all the parts, backstory on many...
What an outstanding pair of books! “Rocket Ranch” and it’s companion “Countdown to a Moon Launch” are probably the most detailed and complete books ever written about what the Apollo program was like at the Kennedy Space Center in the 1960’s and 70’s! The research done to write these two books is remarkable, and just the many pictures alone would be worth the price, but the author’s descriptions make the pictures come alive. As someone who lived through those days – and in retirement still lives on the “Space Coast”, I can say that if you have any interest at all in what the early “space business” was like, you really will enjoy reading these books. They will help you gain a real understanding of what it took to send our astronauts to the Moon!
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