Apollo 1 Fire

The command module of Apollo 1 the day after the fatal fire that killed 3 astronauts
The command module of Apollo 1 the day after the fatal fire that killed 3 astronauts

Historical Context

Apollo 1 was the first crewed mission of the United States' Apollo programme, with the overall intent of landing men on the Moon. The mission turned to disaster when a fire during a rehearsal in the Command Module led to the deaths of the three astronauts: Command Pilot Virgil I. "Gus" Grissom, Senior Pilot Ed White, and Pilot Roger B. Chaffee.

On January 27, 1967, during a launch rehearsal at Cape Kennedy in Florida, an electrical fire (the exact location of which was never fully determined) in the cabin spread rapidly and killed the three pilots. NASA established a review board, and all Apollo manned flights were suspended for 20 months.

NASA made several improvements to their command module design to enhance safety. The Apollo programme would, two and a half years later, land Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin on the Moon.

Photo Info


Photographer: NASA
Date taken: January 28, 1967
Location taken: Cape Kennedy, Florida, USA

Source: Wikimedia Commons

Related Events

  • 1967-01-27 A fire in the Apollo 1 Command Module kills astronauts Gus Grissom, Ed White and Roger B. Chaffee during a launch rehearsal

Historical Photos