Fifty years ago today, oxygen tank 2 in Apollo 13’s service module exploded, triggering the most daring rescue in human history. Three test pilots—Jim Lovell, Jack Swigert, and Fred Haise—returned home by flilnging their crippled spacecraft around the moon. They reached a distance from Earth never before reached or surpassed. Along the way, they pulled every trick in the book: they used their lunar module as a lifeboat, they hand-flew course corrections, they built an oxygen system with duct tape. Their flight was guided by a ground crew for whom failure was not an option.
You can find out more about Apollo 13 at the NASA Web site here.