Rehearsal

Three weeks to launch and the launch team would begin rehearsing for launch day. The most important of these rehearsals was the Countdown Demonstration Test. Simply put, the Countdown Demonstration Test was a complete stab at preparing for the launch of the space vehicle up to, but not including, the ignition of the F-1 engines of the first stage. The spacecraft was fully powered, fuelled with its highly toxic propellants, and occupied by the prime crew. All the Saturn's propellants were loaded according to plan, including the cryogenic hydrogen and oxygen, and all the tanks were pressurised. Everyone in the nearby launch control room and at the Mission Control Center in Houston was at their consoles, each ensuring that their system was operating within limits. This attention to detail and procedure paid off by the excellent record the launch team would attain throughout the Apollo/Saturn period.

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