posted on Jan, 27 2011 @ 04:29 PM
There were multiple problems leading to the deaths of the three astronauts. In order to check pressurization, they had to over-pressurize the
capsule. Since they had planned to use pure oxygen, the attempt for overpressurization with pure oxygen never occured to anyone to be the equivalent
of filling the capsule with dynamite. To provide extra security for the hatch to not blow out en route to the moon, it was created to open inwardly,
with the hatch support structure outside of the hatch, causing it to be unable to be opened outward. The extra protective layer of plasticised
coating to the electronics wiring and equipment had not yet been applied to the capsule. A number of other defects existed, and some influenced the
event, but these were the major ones.
BTW, it was not known as Apollo One until after the deaths of the astronauts. It was actually a test capsule that was never meant to fly in space.
After their deaths, it was decided to call it Apollo One to make it seem something other than a test mishap.
During the test, a spark under the control panel ignited the surface conduit, which spread rapidly within a few seconds. The crew called out that
they had a fire, and tried to release their seat restraints. The rescue/fire team rushed to the capsule as the flames enveloped the inside of the
capsule. However, because the door opened inwardly, the expanding fire caused the internal pressure to rapidly elevate to the point that the outward
pressure inside the capsule meant that no one could possibly push that door inward. There had been some early plans for a pyrotechnic array to blast
the door open, but that had seemed dangerous, as well as a waste of launch weight. Therefore, the outside crew had to watch while the astronauts
tried to crawl around inside, before they succumbed to the extreme heat of the fire.
It was a very bad day.