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Saturn V: October 4th 1957, and the Russians take a huge leap forward in rocketry when they successfully launch Sputnik 1 - the world's first artificial satellite. Over the coming years the Soviets would continue to astound the world with their space achievements. America needs to respond - and quick! Command Module: We recount the story of the engineers who built the Apollo Command Module, a fully pressurised living space that would need to provide three men with food, water, air, power, communication, navigation and above all protection, to the moon and back.
Navigation: We tell the story of how a group of computer scientists grappled with the challenge of navigation of a round trip to the Moon back in the days when computer code and software hadn't been invented and computing power was a fraction of what it is today.
Lunar Module: The story of the engineers challenged with building what became affectionately called the Lunar Bug. A constant battle to meet the seemingly impossible demands of weight restrictions, the Lunar Module was one of the greatest engineering feats in history.
Suits: To survive outside of a spacecraft, an new space vehicle would be required - the spacesuit. Flexible enough to allow man to function, yet provide protection from the hostility of space. Two unlikely companies from the east coast took the challenge. Lunar Rover: In the final film in the series we reveal the untold story of how a very small group of engineers wont take no for an answer and convinces NASA to build what ultimately became the Lunar Rover. As with all the engineering during the Apollo program, the Lunar Rover - a spacecraft on wheels.
Top Customer Reviews
Unlike most programs dealing with space flight, this series is about engineers rather than astronauts. Seeing the cleverness that went into the different elements of Apollo should make you proud of your species.
The producers interviewed many of the surviving project directors and engineering team leaders, including then-and-now photos, a nice touch! Specific problems and their eventual solutions are described using language suited to a general audience, yet not insulting to their intelligence. Even the musical score is noteworthy.
For me, the episode on the lunar rover is easily worth the cover price by itself, but the lunar suit comes a very close second.
Each episode discusses the designs, trials and tribulations, and final culmination or 'moment of truth' when the system was utilized in the missions. The engineering detail is very good for a documentary and far better than anything I have seen before. The footage is also very good quality and fascinating.
The best thing however, is the people. In explaining the program they show a great deal of humility, intelligence, sometimes humour, and then there are moments where they explain what the stress, long hours and problem solving was doing to their personal lives, and finally they come to terms with their achievement.
If you are an engineer, scientist, or are of a technical disposition you will find this inspirational. There should be more documentaries like this.
Though he certainly understates the contribution of the astronauts themselves, he's right about the thousands of people on the ground. This series of six programs looks at the machines and the men and women behind them: the Saturn V rocket, the guidance computers, the command and service module, the lunar module, the lunar rover, and the space suits.
I've been a space nut for a long time, but almost everything here is new to me. The programs are packed with information, from unseen archival film and interviews with the people who did the work. Production values are absolutely first-rate. I've seen a lot of documentaries about Project Apollo, and this is one of the best. I watched it all in a single sitting, and at the end of each episode, I caught myself saying aloud, "This is GREAT!"
I couldn't recommend it more highly.
1) Saturn V Rocket
2) Command Module
3) Navigation Computer
4) Lunar Lander
5) Space Suit
6) Lunar Rover
Each episode contains commentaries by a dozen or so of the original Engineers/Managers/Technicians who worked on the specific systems, interspersed with videos relevant to the commentaries. Each episode captures at least 2 or 3 of the "problems" that had to be overcome to develop each of these critical systems, and captures the "most critical" and "high point" of the Apollo Mission, from the perspective of those who worked on the individual systems.
I watch these documentaries over and over... the Saturn V episode is my favorite.
It is my opinion that the way in which the Lunar Lander episode depicts that Von Braun "finally came around to accept" Houbolt's Lunar Orbit Rendezvous (LOR) was the "only way" to get the moon (within the 10 year goal set by Kennedy) is over-simplified & misleading, and really misses the facts in a number of ways... to see for yourself, one can read an account of Von Braun's own opinion on this subject, in an online article that contains two interviews with Dr. Von Braun (conducted August 25, 1970, and November 17, 1971); in which Von Braun clearly corrects the record on this subject... so, that Robert Seamans & this documentary (made in 2008/2009) would take - in my opinion - an unfair and outdated representation of the situation, apparently cooked up by the press in the late 60's for its "sensationalist" angle, is a bit misleading on this important/main historical subject from that particular episode.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is just so well done, you get to hear from the engineer's themselves how they went about solving all the problems that made Apollo work. Read morePublished 9 days ago by Barry J. Aiello
These videos are really fantastic and informative. I was a kid during the space race and know a lot about it but these stories still mentioned things I didn't know. Read morePublished 1 month ago by B. N. Bass
Absolutely superb production that is most highly recommended for any fan of the moon rocket program. These videos contain information not generally available anywhere else. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Robert A. Schmidt
Great story, all the better for being true. American engineering at its best.Published 4 months ago by Daniel R. Glueck
If you have ever been interested in the Apollo program, this is a must see.Published 5 months ago by john Selle
Great documentary! If you enjoy learning about the mission to the moon, this is a must have. I have several movies/documentaries about the subject, but this one is the first that... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Black Belt319
A very informative book regarding man's machines for the moon.Published 6 months ago by Ralph D. Glashoff