Launched: 31 January 1971 UT 21:03:02 (4:03:02 p.m. EST)
Landed on Moon: 5 February 1971 UT 09:18:11 (04:18:11 a.m. EST)
Landing Site: Fra Mauro (3.65 S, 17.47 W)
Returned to Earth: 9 February 1971 UT 21:05:00 (04:05:00 p.m. EST)
Alan B. Shepard, Jr., commander
Stuart A. Roosa, command module pilot Edgar D. Mitchell, lunar module pilot
Apollo 14 was the third mission in which humans walked on the lunar surface and returned to Earth. On 5 February 1971 two astronauts (Apollo 14 Commander Alan B. Shepard, Jr. and LM pilot Edgar D. Mitchell) landed near Fra Mauro crater on the Moon in the Lunar Module (LM) while the Command and Service Module (CSM) (with CM pilot Stuart A. Roosa) continued in lunar orbit. During their stay on the Moon, the astronauts set up scientific experiments, took photographs, and collected lunar samples. The LM took off from the Moon on 6 February and the astronauts returned to Earth on 9 February.
The LM, with Shepard and Mitchell aboard, separated from the CSM, piloted by Roosa, at 04:50:44 UT on 5 February and landed at 09:18:11 UT in the hilly upland region 24 km north of the rim of Fra Mauro crater at 3.6 S, 17.5 W. The astronauts made two moonwalk EVA's totaling 9 hours, 23 minutes, one on 5 February and one on 6 February, during which the Apollo lunar surface experiments package (ALSEP) was placed on the surface of the moon, 42.9 kg of lunar samples were acquired, and photographs were taken. At the end of the second EVA Shepard hit two golf balls. Experiments were also performed from the CSM in equatorial orbit.
The LM lifted off from the Moon at 18:48:42 UT on 6 February after 33 hours, 31 minutes on the lunar surface. It impacted the Moon on 8 February 00:45:25.7 UT at 3.42 S, 19.67 W. Apollo 14 splashed down in the Pacific Ocean on 9 February 1971 at 21:05:00 UT (4:05:00 p.m. EST) after a mission elapsed time of 216 hrs, 1 min, 58 secs. The splashdown point was 27 deg 1 min S, 172 deg 39 min W, 765 nautical miles south of American Samoa. The astronauts and capsule were picked up by the recovery ship USS New Orleans. This was the last Apollo mission in which the astronauts were put in quaratine after their return.
Performance of the spacecraft, the third of the Apollo H-series missions, was good for most aspects of the mission. The primary mission goals of deployment of the ALSEP and other scientific experiments, collection of lunar samples, surface photography, and photography, radio science and other scientific experiments from orbit were achieved with the exception of the full coverage planned for the Hycon camera. Shepard, 47, was a Navy captain on his second spaceflight (he'd flown previously as the first American in space on Mercury Redstone 3), Roosa, 37, was an Air Force major on his first spaceflight, and Mitchell, 40, was a Navy commander also on his first spaceflight. The backup crew for this mission was Eugene Cernan, Ronald Evans, and Joe Engle. The Apollo 14 command module "Kitty Hawk" is currently on display at the Astronaut Hall of Fame in Titusville, Florida.
America's first experimental space station, Skylab, was designed for long durations. Skylab program objectives were twofold: To prove that humans could live and work in space for extended periods, and to expand our knowledge of solar astronomy well beyond Earth-based observations. The program was successful in all respects despite early mechanical difficulties. Skylab was launched into Earth orbit by a Saturn V rocket on May 14, 1973. Through the use of a "dry" third stage of the Saturn V rocket, the station was completely outfitted as a workshop area before launch. Crews visited Skylab and returned to Earth in Apollo spacecraft. Three, three-man crews occupied the Skylab workshop for a total of 171 days and 13 hours. It was the site of nearly 300 scientific and technical experiments, including medical experiments on humans' adaptability to zero…