Apollo 11/50th Anniversary Events
Before any Apollo mission flew, NASA dealt with a major tragedy on Jan. 27, 1967. As the first Apollo crew – Gus Grissom, Ed White and Roger Chaffee – were conducting a simulation on the launch pad in Florida, a flash fire broke out in their capsule. In the 100 percent oxygen atmosphere NASA was then using, the fire spread quickly and killed all three. The disaster caused NASA to re-examine all aspects of the program and rework many of the spacecraft’s systems. That spring, the mission for which the crew had been training was officially named Apollo 1.