11.04.

1970: Was Apollo 13 Really Launched at 13:13?

1970: Was Apollo 13 Really Launched at 13:13?
Photo Credit To https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/13/Apollo_15_launch_medium_distance.jpg

Apollo 13 was launched on this day at exactly 13:13 Houston time, where the NASA space flight control center was located. However, in Florida, where the launch was carried out, it was already 14:13. 

On this day the famous Apollo 13 mission was launched into space. It failed to land on the moon and barely returned to Earth after the accident. It was the seventh manned launch towards the Moon (the first six Apollo spacecraft did not have human crew), but the astronauts in Apollo 13 were only the third that were supposed to land on the moon (only Apollo 11 and Apollo 12 landed before them).

The launch was carried out in Florida, at the launching complex 39 (LC-39), at the John F. Kennedy Space Center. The launching pad from which Apollo 13 took off is marked LC-39A and is located just a few hundred meters from the shore of the Atlantic Ocean.

It is interesting that Apollo 13 was launched exactly at 13:13 per standard time in Houston, which induced much superstition. However, it should be noted that in Florida it was already 14:13. In addition, the so-called Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) is the most important for space flights, which is governed by the prime meridian at Greenwich. According to that time it was already 19:13.

All went wrong with Apollo 13 when, two days after the launch, on the way to the Moon, a tank with liquid oxygen exploded. The Moon landing had to be canceled, and the crew barely pulled out alive.

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