Encyclopedia Astronautica
1968.10.28 - No static-firing of the Apollo 8 reaction control system on the pad


MSC Apollo Spacecraft Program Office Manager George M. Low deleted the requirement for a short static-firing of the Apollo 8 service module reaction control system on the pad before launch (the so-called "burp" firing).

He took this move in line with a recommendation from NASA Apollo Program Director Samuel C. Phillips and in light of the nominal performance of the RCS during the Apollo 7 flight. By thus eliminating the burp firings - and not allowing any contact of the system's hypergolic propellants - the spacecraft could be maintained in a loaded condition through the December and January launch windows and gain the maximum launch flexibility for the Apollo 8 flight. (Decisions not to static-fire the RCS systems on spacecraft following 103 had been made some time earlier.)

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