Minute 077: Squeeze Every Amp

April 07, 2020

John Aaron is explaining all the systems that need to be turned off.

“– heater, instrument displays, the guidance computer, the whole smack,” says Aaron.

“Whoa, guidance computer?” asks EECOM Gold. “What if they need to do another burn, Gene? They won’t even know which way they’re pointed!”

“The more time we talk down here, the more juice they waste up there – – I’ve been looking at the data for the past hour,” says Aaron.

“That’s the deal?” asks Kranz.

“That’s the deal,” replies John Aaron.

“Okay, John, “says Gene, “The minute we finish the burn, we’ll power down the LM.”

“Alright,” says John Aaron, and leaves.

“Now, in the meantime,” says Kranz, “we’re gonna have a frozen Command Module up there. In a couple of days, we’re going to have to power it up using nothing but the reentry batteries.”

“Never been tried before, “says one engineer.

“Hell,” says another engineer, “we’ve never even simulated it before, Gene.”

“Well, we’re going to have to figure it out,” says Gene, “I want people in our simulators, working reentry scenarios.” John Young leaves for the simulator room.

“I want you guys to find every engineer who designed every switch, every circuit, every transistor, and every light bulb that’s up there, then I want you to talk to the guy on the assembly line who actually built the thing. Find out how to squeeze every amp out of both of these goddamn machines!” says Kranz, picking up a piece of chalk and walking back to the mission map. “I want this mark all the way back to Earth –”


Ed Harris as Gene Kranz

Loren Dean as John Aaron

Ray McKinnon as EECOM Gold

Ben Marley as John Young

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