Cancelled American Missions...
Mercury cancelled missions (1963)
After the first six successful Mercury manned missions, another
three aditional flights (Mercury 10 to 12) were originally planned,
all to lift off before the end of 1963. These were cancelled
for budget reasons and to implement quicker the first flights
of the Gemini program.
Gemini 9 (1966)
Elliot See amd Charles Basset were in line to fly as
Prime Crew for Gemini 9. However, on February 28 1966, both were killed when
their T-38 Talon crashed into a building at the Lambert Field airport in St.
Louis, Missouri before Gemini 9 flew. The backup crew became the new prime crew:
||See + Bassett
||Stafford + Cernan
See and Bassett (seated) were killed in a T-38 before their
Gemini 9 mission. The backup crew (Stafford and Cernan) made the flight.
Apollo Program (1967/74)
Apollo 1 is the official name given to the never-flown Apollo/Saturn
204 (AS-204) mission. Its command module (CM-012) was destroyed by fire during a
test and training exercise on January 27, 1967 at Pad 34 (Launch Complex 34,
Cape Canaveral, then known as Cape Kennedy) atop a Saturn IB rocket. The crew
onboard were astronauts selected for the first manned Apollo program mission and
all three died in the accident: Command Pilot Virgil I. "Gus" Grissom, Senior
Pilot Ed White and Pilot Roger B. Chaffee.
Due to budget constraints there were various
cancelled Apollo missions during the Apollo program. Along
with Apollos 18, 19 and 20, which received some level of
planning, there were a variety of later planned flights. Some
of these were incorporated into the Apollo Applications
Program, of which the only result was the Skylab space station.
Originally, NASA produced fifteen flight-worthy Saturn Vs;
inclusive of two unmanned tests, this was enough to provide
thirteen manned missions; these would have been the missions
that took place plus Apollo 18 through Apollo 20.
The first mission to be canceled was Apollo
20. On January 4, 1970 NASA announced it was canceling the
Apollo 20 as its Saturn V rocket was now needed for the Skylab
space station and budget restrictions had limited the Saturn V
production to the original 15 flight models. Then on September
2, 1970, NASA announced it was canceling what were to be the
Apollo 15 and Apollo 19 missions. Apollo 15 was originally
meant to be an H mission — like Apollo 12, 13 and 14. These
cancellations meant that Apollo 15 became a J mission — three
day stay on the moon with the lunar rover and that Apollo 18
would no longer be launched.
Deke Slayton was the Director of Flight Crew
Operations and effectively chose the crews for the flights.
During the early Apollo missions he had used a rotation system
of assigning a crew as backup and then three missions later
they would be the prime crew. However, by the later Apollo
flights, this system was used less frequently as astronauts
left the program, Slayton wanted to give rookies a chance, and
astronauts didn't want to take dead-end backup positions.
Gordon + Brand + Schmitt
Haise + Pogue + Carr
Roosa + Lousma + Lind