LM Decent Engine in David's living room

Marketing the Moon co-author David Meerman Scott collects hardware used in the Apollo missions, which he displays on his Apollo Artifacts site. He is likely the only person in the world with a lunar module descent engine thrust chamber in his living room! Not bad considering there is one on display at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC.

DMS Living room.jpg

This model of thrust chamber was developed for the Apollo Lunar Module decent stage and made 10 flights during the Apollo program. The engine type became famous again in the 1995 with the release of the movie "Apollo 13" as the engine that powered the crippled Apollo 13 spacecraft from the moon back to earth because the Service Propulsion System was never used subsequent to the cryotank stir/explosion. Because the extent of damage to the SPS was unknown, there was great concern at the time that collateral damage could have caused a catastrophic malfunction (if the engine was fired). Instead the LMDE was used for the return burn and subsequent course correction. Quite a famous engine.

Of course, this is not that exact engine as it burned up in the earth's atmosphere after being jettisoned when the Apollo 13 crew returned to earth in the Command Module.

Flown engines, of course, are either left on the surface of the moon (Apollo 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17), crashed into the moon (Apollo 10), or burned up in earth’s atmosphere (Apollo 5, 9, 13).

Posted on February 11, 2014 .