In This Beautiful Planet is Revolving Around the Three of Us, the Apollo 16 crew have just awakened from their first sleep period. The previous day had been a busy and exciting one for John Young, Ken Mattingly, and Charlie Duke. It began with a flawless launch on top of the mighty Saturn V. It continued with a brief orbit around the Earth to check out their Command Module, and a long burn of the SIV-B third stage to reach trans-lunar injection velocity. Once on their way toward the Moon, they separated from the spent rocket, turned around and docked with the lunar module. They then pulled it away for their 240,000 mile journey to the Moon.
Because they are exposed to harsh continuous sunlight on their journey between the Earth and the Moon, they have oriented their docked spacecraft with the long axis perpendicular to the Sun. The crew then programmed their computer to slowly rotate their two spacecraft so that the temperatures within them remain within acceptable limits.
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