America’s Apollo 11 moon landing gets all the attention, so in keeping with Balladeer’s Blog’s overall theme here’s a look at the six missions that followed that very first manned moon landing.
Command Module Yankee Clipper Pilot: Richard F Gordon, Jr
Lunar Module Intrepid Pilot: Alan L Bean
Less than four full months after Apollo 11’s successful mission the Apollo 12 crew provided a SECOND fulfillment of President John F Kennedy’s goal of landing men on the moon and returning them safely to the Earth.
The Lunar Module Intrepid touched down on the moon’s surface on November 19th, 1969 at 1:54am EST and lifted off to rendezvous with the orbiting Command Module Yankee Clipper on November 20th at 9:25am. Splashdown in the Pacific Ocean was on November 24th at 3:58pm.
The Mission: The Yankee Clipper was struck by lightning during its ascent from the Earth, knocking out all power but the back-up systems successfully restored all operations to normal. Apollo 12 made a perfect touchdown at its predesignated landing area, already improving on the previous mission, which had been very slightly off-course.
After landing at the Ocean of Storms Astronauts Conrad and Bean had to contend with a much more powdery surface than the Apollo 11 crew had encountered. The lunar dust and powder clung to the Astonauts’ suits and nearly clogged vital portions of the high-tech outfits. The crew deployed a battery of scientific equipment, gathered 75 pounds of moon rocks – many green and tan – and retrieved portions of the nearby Surveyor craft, an umanned module that had landed on the moon in 1967. Continue reading