Thanks to the keen eye of a 13 year old, the Libraries received four Apollo Program training publications on the lunar module written and donated by Mr. Carl Klempner, a former Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation employee. On a recent visit to the National Air and Space Museum to see the lunar module exhibit which Grumman configured to accurately represent the Eagle, Klempner’s grandson was quick to recommend the museum as the proper place for his grandfather’s publications to be preserved.
As Apollo XI’s lunar module Eagle descended to the moon’s Sea of Tranquility during the first manned lunar landing on July 20, 1969, NASA astronaut Neil Armstong, observing that the spacecraft’s programmed landing profile would set the spacecraft down, very likely disastrously, in an area densely littered with boulders, made a decision to override the propulsion and reaction control subsystem computers of the lunar module and manually pilot the Eagle during the final seconds of its descent. Firing the lunar module’s reaction control thrusters to move the spacecraft past the boulders, and with a final burn of the descent stage rocket motor, Armstrong set the Eagle down on the moon's surface with less than 30 seconds of descent stage fuel remaining in reserve.
These Grumman Apollo Program training publications are, in effect, the
equivalent of a flight manual for the lunar module and consequently
make an extraordinary addition to the National Air and Space Museum Library. They are also the very editions of training publications used by the Apollo XI crew. —Bill Baxter and Liz O’Brien
Gifts from Mr. Carl P. Klempner:
- Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corp., LM Propulsion and RCS Course No. 30217 Study Guide [LSP 470-2C, for training purposes only] prepared by William Strasburger, LM Training. Revised: February 1967.
- Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corp., Reaction Control Subsystem [LMA790-3-LM 2] No date.
- Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corp., Project Apollo. Lunar Excursion Module, Support Manual [LMA790-8-82090], Electrical Power Subsystem Checkout Controller, Part No. LDW410-82090. 15 June 1966.
- Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corp., Project Apollo. Lunar Excursion Module, Support Manual [LMA790-82150] , Load Simulator Assembly, Part No. LDW410-82150. 15 April 1966.