Science: Proof Positive

Compared to Orbiter's lunar exploits, last week's suborbital flight of the Apollo moonship seemed humdrum indeed —an almost old-fashioned journey only three-quarters of the way around the world. But that brief, 94-minute flight was final proof that the craft and its systems are spaceworthy, and that a novel re-entry technique is feasible. Apollo's success set the stage for a three-man, 14-day orbital flight as early as next December.

Equipped with everything that it will carry to the moon except the astronauts and their sleeping couches, the Apollo system, weighing 56,900 lbs., or more than seven times the Gemini spacecraft, blasted off from...

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