Apollo's Moon Shot

Triumph and Tragedy
Repeat

Series 1 - Episode 2 Triumph and Tragedy

Tue 5 Nov 5pm - 6pm Smithsonian
See Repeats
Wed 6 Nov, 5am - 6am Smithsonian
HD
ADVERTISEMENT

Review

This series brings the early space programme beautifully to life with footage and sound recordings from Nasa’s archives, tonight covering 1960s trials and docking tests. There’s a childlike, carefree atmosphere to Ed White’s first spacewalk – he’s having such fun he has to be ordered back into the capsule like a naughty schoolboy.

But one incident cuts through the optimism. In January 1967 three Apollo 1 astronauts climbed into the capsule on the launch tower for a routine series of ground tests. They were enclosed in pressurised pure oxygen: what followed when an electrical connection shorted is captured with awful clarity in recordings of the exchanges between the control centre and the astronauts.

Summary

The two-person Gemini missions taught American astronauts to walk in space. However, tragedy struck the first manned Apollo mission when a capsule caught fire, revealing the true cost of space flight.
Education