Encyclopedia Astronautica
1968.03.01 - Decision not to static-fire Apollo service modules


MSC had decided not to static-fire the service modules of Block II spacecraft before flight (specifically, spacecraft 101), ASPO advised NASA Hq.

The decision was based on successful completion of the spacecraft 102 static firing, evaluation of the test history on the service propulsion system, and a review by a joint MSC-MSFC team that came out flatly against any such static firings at KSC and acceded to such tests at White Sands only under Houston's strict authority. During subsequent discussions in Houston (notably a February 19 meeting with the MSFC contingent), program planners rejected such firings at White Sands because the additional transportation and handling might degrade reliability of the hardware - exactly the opposite of what was being sought.

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