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on the Human Exploration of Space
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Established 1982
Incorporation 2003
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Apollo 13
Apollo 13 is remembered for the lunar landing that did not occur. Planned as the third lunar landing mission targeted for the hilly uplands of Fra Mauro there were two surface EVA's planned along with orbital photography of potential future Apollo lunar landing sides. By the time the mission was launched public interest in the lunar landing missions was declining and major TV networks were reluctant to televise all the broadcasts from the spacecraft. After this mission there were still six landings planned with Apollo ending with Apollo 19. The originally manifested Apollo 20 mission had already been cancelled in January 1970 with hardware relocated to support the Skylab space station missions. There was no guarantee that further lunar missions would not be cut from the programme. In the event the Apollo 13 landing had to be cancelled after an in-flight explosion in the Service Module ripped out the side of the spacecraft and damaged or caused the loss of precious consumables and equipment. It was only having the Lunar module still attached, the skills of the ground controllers and the resourcefulness of the three crew-members that Apollo 13v made it back home, officially a failure in not achieving the lunar landing but in reality a successful failure in returning the three astronauts alive
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