The Apollo Spacecraft was the incredible machine that allowed astronauts to walk on the moon. It was split up into 3 parts the Command Module, the Service Module and the Lunar Module. Later on, we’ll talk about what each module does, but first, let’s talk about the launch vehicle that gets us into orbit. The Saturn Five rocket. Each mission was launched from Cape Canaveral in Florida. Mission Control was all the way in Houston, Texas. The Saturn Five rocket was 363 feet tall. Just to get a good size comparison, here’s the size of a person, and here is the size of a Boeing 747. The Saturn Five was split up into 3 stages; they referred to each stage by a technical name. The first stage was called the S-1C and was powered by five F1 rocket engines. The second stage was called the S2, and was powered by five, slightly smaller, J2 rocket engines. The third stage was called the S-4B and was powered by only one J2 rocket engine. The actual spacecraft, was stored up at the top of the rocket stages. Here is the Lunar Module, which would actually land on the Moon. During the launch, it was protected by four panels, known as the spacecraft Lunar Module adapter. The Service Module contain the engines necessary to enter and leave lunar orbit as well as fuel cells and other electrical components. The Command Module is where the 3 astronauts spent most of their time. At the very top, you’ll find the Launch Escape System. In the event of an emergency, it would carry the Command Module safely away from the rocket. The structure you see next to the Saturn Five is called the Launch Umbilical Tower. You’ll notice there are 9 service arms that provide access to the Saturn Five. On the day of the launch, the 3 astronauts ride an elevator to the top service arm. The White Room is where they enter the Command Module. Four of the service arms are moved out of the way before the launch. The First Stage ignites 8 seconds before the Saturn Five leaves the ground. As the Saturn Five starts to rise, the remaining 5 service arms quickly rotate to get out of the way. It takes about 12 seconds for the rocket to completely clear the tower. As the Saturn Five picks up speed, the astronauts will feel as much as 4 G’s, or 4 times the amount of gravity pressing them into their seats. The First Stage shuts off at 2 minutes 42 seconds at a height of about 42 miles. Explosive bolts detonate releasing the first stage, letting it to fall back down to the Atlantic Ocean; shortly after, the second stage fires up. We’re high enough in the atmosphere now, that the Launch Escape System is no longer needed. The second stage shuts off at 9 minutes and 12 seconds at a height of 109 miles. The third stage fires up for a short amount of time to get the astronauts into a Parking Orbit of 118 miles. We’ll talk more about the Parking Orbit in the next video. It shuts off at 11 minutes and 39 seconds, but does not detach yet. One of the hardest parts of the mission is over, but the adventure doesn’t stop here. Please join me in part two, as we continue our journey towards the Moon.