A Successful Failure
“Houston, we’ve had a problem.”
On April 13, 1970, the three astronauts aboard the Apollo 13 spacecraft were headed to the moon when a sudden explosion rocked the ship. Oxygen levels began depleting rapidly. Electrical power began to fail. Astronauts James Lovell, Jack Swigert, and Fred Haise were about to be stranded in the inky void of outer space.
The mission to the moon was scrapped. Now, Apollo 13‘s only goal was to bring the crew home. With the damaged spacecraft hurtling towards the moon at roughly six thousand miles per hour, there was little hope of success. But the astronauts and mission control were fully prepared to do whatever it took to return the crew to Earth.
This space disaster occurred at the peak of the United States’ Space Race against the Soviet Union. But for four days in 1970, the two nations put aside their differences, and the entire world watched the skies, hoping and praying the astronauts would return safely. As missions to Mars and commercial space flight become a reality, the time is now to be reminded of our common humanity, of how rivals can work together and support each other towards a shared goal. Because no matter what happens or where we travel, we all call Earth home.
|Interest Level||Grade 8 - Grade 12|
|Reading Level||Grade 8|
|Genre||Nonfiction, Young Adult|
|Subject||Science, STEM, STEM: Space Science|
|Publisher||Lerner Publishing Group|
|Imprint||Twenty-First Century Books ™|
|Number of Pages||136|
Author: Laura B. Edge
Laura B. Edge was born just north of Chicago in Waukegan, Illinois. She grew up in a big Italian-Irish family with lots of brothers and sisters. She loves to read, travel, dance, ride horses, and watch basketball games. Laura received her bachelor's degree in education from the University of Texas at Austin and studied abroad with the American Institute of Foreign Study. Laura has taught reading and writing in elementary schools, middle schools, and at a community college. In addition to teaching, Laura has worked as a computer programmer and owned and operated a computer training company. Laura uses her love of history to create books that bring the past to life. She enjoys research and uncovering little known facts.