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17th of April 2020
50th Anniversary of the Apollo 13 mission
This week marks the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 13 mission, with crew members Jim Lovell, John Swigert and Fred Haise. The dramatic events of the mission are re-told by Hamish Lindsay in an essay on the honeysucklecreek.net website.

As the hobbled Command and Service Module (CSM) and coupled Lunar Module (LM) neared the Earth, the crew needed to return to the Command Module and jettison the Service Module and Lunar Module. The Service Module separation bolts were fired from the Command Module at 23:14 AEST on April 17. As the Service Module drifted away, the extent of the damage was visible for the first time. Anticipating only a small hole from the explosion, Lovell said “I’m glad we couldn’t see the Service Module earlier. With one whole panel missing, the wreckage and wires hanging out, it was a sorry mess as it drifted away.” The image above, taken by Swigert, was valuable for later analysis, as the Service Module burned up on reentry into the Earth's atmosphere. At 01:23 AEST April 18 the Command Module was powered up and the crew left the Lunar Module, which was then released, and at 03:53 AEST the Command Module reentered the atmosphere, successfully splashing down in the Pacific Ocean. (Image credit: honeysucklecreek.net)

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