Chapter One: The Four-Inch Flight"Houston, we have a problem."
At some time in the hours that followed that terse announcement from Apollo 13, many of us in NASA's Mission Control Center wondered if we were going to lose the crew. Each of us had indelible memories of that awful day three years before when three other astronauts sat in an Apollo spacecraft firmly anchored to the ground. Running a systems test. Routine. In terms of the distances involved in spaceflight, we could almost reach out and touch them.
Moments after the first intimation that something had gone terribly wrong, technicians were up in the gantry,...