The last scheduled moonflight in the United States' Apollo series will being on December 6th.?
The last scheduled moonflight in the United States' Apollo series will being on December 6th. The astronauts, who have spent months of meticulous preparation based on years of basis training, completed a successful rehearsal on November 21 (Tuesday).
The crew are Commander Eugene Cernan, Dr. Harrison ("Jack") Schmitt and Ronald Evans. There is also a reserve crew: Astronauts John Young, Charles Duke and Stuart Rossa.
All six men are now in quarantine to stay healthy and free from contact with potential disease carriers. On Thursday they all enjoyed a traditional American Thanksgiving dinner.
Once on the moon, the Apollo 17 adventurers will use a "moon car" to travel to carry out experiments.
SYNOPSIS: At Cape Kennedy the crew of Apollo Seventeen prepare for their moonflight which starts on December 6.
It will be an historic occasion. Not because it is in any way pioneering, but because it will be the last American trip to the moon for many years.
So Eugene Cernan, Ronald Evans and Harrison Schmitt could be the last men of their generation to make this nerve-racking walk through the stark corridors leading to the moon.
The astronauts are spending the three weeks before their flight in quarantine. They can't meet even their families for fear of catching a passing germ which could jeopardise the multi-million dollar Apollo Seventeen project. But just in case, there are three reserves standing by....John Young, Charles Duke, and Stuart Rossa.
But the reserves will probably remain on the ground and out of the history books, as their colleagues ascend to the moon.
A space-suit is somewhat clumsy on earth; but on the moon, where there's one sixth the gravity, the astronauts will be able to move freely as they go about their scientific tasks.
The control centre in Houston, Texas, will be back in action for the big occasion. Countdown will start on November 30 -- and many of the scientists taking part know they'll be counting down the days before they may find themselves out of work.