Talk:Roger B. Chaffee

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Odd[edit]

This article states: "In June 1966, the men got permission to name their flight Apollo 1." Really? It seems unlikely that the crew would be given permission to name their mission Apollo 1 - they might be allowed to pick the name of the capsule (liberty bell 7, etc.) but not the overall mission. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 108.171.130.189 (talk) 17:15, 11 June 2015 (UTC)

Thank you IP editor from a year ago, that was bothering me too. You are right; they did not, and the info has been replaced with correct information and a citation. Kees08 (talk) 06:59, 20 September 2016 (UTC)
All right, if you're going to be a stickler for accuracy, what they got permission for was to put "Apollo 1" on their mission patch. NASA management (that would probably be Mueller) at this time hadn't dealt with the issue of numbering the Apollo missions yet; the official designation remained AS-204, but the public would obviously expect to see "Apollo" plus a number (like the Gemini flights) instead of the technical numbering (just like Grissom's Mercury flight was publicly known as Liberty Bell 7 rather than its official "Mercury-Redstone 4" designation. If you read the Apollo 1 article, this is given in more detail (with appropriate citations.) The flight had been publicly known in the press as "Apollo 1" sometime in advance of the flight, and the North American Aviation contractor employees put a big label "Apollo One" on the capsule as it was delivered to the Cape, so there was a high motivational value in calling it this, so Mueller sort of mumbled "OK". After the fire, Mueller was finally forced to deal with an official Apollo flight numbering policy; that's when he in essence "retired" Apollo 1 to honor the widows' wishes. The next flight in the sequence would be the unmanned Apollo 4 because three unmanned flights had already occurred, and the policy explicitly did not address which of the three were Apollo 1 (which would have contradicted the numbering of Chaffee's flight), Apollo 2, or Apollo 3. JustinTime55 (talk) 13:37, 20 September 2016 (UTC)
Thank you for all this info, it is really great. I appreciate all your hard work on these articles. One thing though, you removed a sentence and said no reliable source has said that, but i had cited it from NASA and it is in the citation in that sentence. Take a look at that and consider adding it back. Let me know, thanks! Kees08 (talk) 17:02, 20 September 2016 (UTC)

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Suggestion to remove memorials section[edit]

Hey all. I have been working on this article a decent amount, and I think that the memorials section is just a collection of random trivia facts that do not belong on Wikipedia. I can agree with keeping things like the plaques that are located at KSC, but things like roads should be removed in my opinion. These sorts of details are left out of the Neil Armstrong article (which is assessed GA), I think for a good reason. Wanted to discuss it first since it is a decent sized change. Let me know your thoughts, thanks! Kees08 (talk) 04:31, 15 September 2016 (UTC)

I would think that the space and KSC memorials at least are worth mentioning, the others I'd say we can take or leave but let's see what others think. One way to avoid the appearance of a trivia section (and perhaps reduce the risk of random trivia being added) might be to rewrite the section as prose rather than leaving as a series of lists. In any case though, everything mentioned needs a citation to a reliable source. Cheers, Ian Rose (talk) 07:16, 19 September 2016 (UTC)
Done, at least in a way I thought made sense. Limited the memorials to areas where he went in life: his hometown, his schools, and his career (and the official ones in space, more or less just because). Cited all of the remaining.

B-Class assessment[edit]

Referencing-wise, this is close to B-Class but there's still a few areas missing citations; aside from under Memorials (mentioned immediately above) those are:

  • The last two sentences of Flight control
    •  Done Kees08 (talk) 05:05, 20 September 2016 (UTC)
  • The first sentence/paragraph of Accident
    •  Done: Moved to aftermath section, changed entirely based on new info, and added citation to back it up Kees08 (talk) 07:01, 20 September 2016 (UTC)
  • Both sentences of Aftermath
    •  Done Kees08 (talk) 05:05, 20 September 2016 (UTC)
  • NASA Exceptional Service Medal under Awards and honors
    •  Done, removed, couldn't find a source. Kees08 (talk) 05:05, 20 September 2016 (UTC)

Also, Find a Grave is not generally considered a reliable source.  Done, removed, I agree thanks for giving me a reason to finally do it. Kees08 (talk) 05:05, 20 September 2016 (UTC)
I'll leave those to others but will walk through the article and see if the prose can use tweaking. Cheers, Ian Rose (talk) 07:34, 19 September 2016 (UTC)

@Ian Rose: Let me know if you need me to do anything else. Thanks! Kees08 (talk) 07:01, 20 September 2016 (UTC)

@Ian Rose: Hey there, let me know if you need anything else from me on this! Kees08 (talk) 07:28, 30 September 2016 (UTC)

Hi, sorry I did see your earlier ping and meant to reply that I was just going to wait until things got stable as there was still some editing going on. Heading out now but I'll try and have another look through it before the end of the day. Cheers, Ian Rose (talk) 07:41, 30 September 2016 (UTC)
Looking much better reference-wise, but we still need a citation for the last part of the Accident subsection. Cheers, Ian Rose (talk) 14:08, 30 September 2016 (UTC)
Heard that a couple of times, think pings might havr been broken. And no worries! Also, if you have time to let me know about what I would need to do to push this article to GA, let me know. Thanks! Kees08 (talk) 14:58, 30 September 2016 (UTC)

I do not know how I missed your comment, I will fix that today

@Ian Rose: Cited the last two sentences. I can cite anymore you would like me to. Let me know if you need me to change anything else. Thanks for all the help! Kees08 (talk) 00:54, 3 October 2016 (UTC)

Hi again Kees. Almost there; just having another look while I did some formatting, I'd question the reliability of footnote #9 -- looks like a private enthusiast's site. Cheers, Ian Rose (talk) 01:08, 3 October 2016 (UTC)
Good catch, I agree. I looked into it a lot and I can't find anything saying it isn't. My original thought was that it was a precursor to the official astronaut memorials webpage, but it looks like they coexisted and were separate websites. Removed; there were two other citations for that particular fact already. Kees08 (talk) 04:18, 3 October 2016 (UTC)
@Ian Rose: Let me know if you need anything else, thanks! Kees08 (talk) 03:47, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

Expansion of accident based on AIB report[edit]

Kees08, I just have two problems with your update: 1) I don't see what was "not entirely accurate" about the accident summary that was there; and 2) I think this is too much detail about the accident investigation findings, which can be found in the Apollo 1 page. I think this article about Chaffee should just basically summarize the accident, which is how he died. (The existing summary was also based on the report.) Adding details devoted to him, such as his couch position and suit condition, I think are appropriate. JustinTime55 (talk) 13:59, 22 September 2016 (UTC)

Are there any particular sentences that you believe shouldn't be there? I was trying really hard to just give a general timeline of events and tried to limit it to what generally happened during the accident, and what Chaffee was doing during those times. I am obviously fine with removing some info, just let me know specifically what you do not like. It doesn't really matter anymore on what it used to be, but I think the time didn't look right to me? I could look back, but kind of a waste of time at this point. Summary of my rambling: let me know specifically what you think is extraneous for this article. Thanks! Kees08 (talk) 15:08, 22 September 2016 (UTC)
I just think the bulk of what you replaced is way too much detail:

White and Grissom followed emergency procedures to attempt to open the command module hatch, while Chaffee maintained communications with the blockhouse. The cabin was equipped with a pressure relief system, but it was unable to keep up with the gas pressure generated from the fire. This created a high internal pressure, which combined with the hatch design, made it impossible for the astronauts to open the hatch.The hull ruptured at 23:31:19 GMT, with all voice transmissions ceasing three seconds after. After the hull ruptured, flames begin igniting materials outside of the capsule which, along with heavy smoke, inhibited rescue efforts. Once firefighters were able to access the hatch, they noted the positions of the astronaut couches...

Further investigation revealed the astronauts died to due asphyxia from smoke inhalation. Initial efforts to remove the astronauts from the command module failed, as their suits fused to the seats of the capsule. Photographs of the capsule were taken with the crew still in place in order to aid the investigation; afterwards, it took 90 minutes to remove the crew, seven and a half hours after the accident.

opposed to the original, which I think is just fine as a summary:

During the twenty-three seconds that the fire was fed by pure oxygen at slightly greater than atmospheric pressure, Chaffee stayed strapped to his right-hand seat. Assigned emergency roles called for Grissom, in the left-hand seat, to open the cabin pressure vent valve, while White in the center seat was to open the hatch, and Chaffee in the right-hand seat was to maintain communications. Grissom was prevented from opening the valve by the intensity of the fire, which started in that region. Despite this, White removed his restraints and tried in vain to open the hatch. The increasing pressure finally burst the inner cabin wall; now fed by nitrogen-buffered ambient air, the fire decreased in intensity and eventually put itself out. By that time it had already produced large amounts of smoke, which killed the astronauts.

I would just add a little detail about Grissom and White's assigned emergency roles (in italics above), and keep the two sentences about Chaffee's couch position, suit and restraint condition. JustinTime55 (talk) 15:30, 22 September 2016 (UTC)

I'll start off by admitting I am a little annoyed by this, but we can work it out. I can't find in the AIB report where it says that oxygen flowed for 23 seconds. That is sometime both after rupture and after communications with the crew officially ceased (23:31:04 to 23:31:22). I don't think it is excessive to have a very brief timeline of events, to give readers a sense of what is happening without having to go to the Apollo 1 article to understand. The Apollo 1 article should supplement this article, not be a required read. To back this up a little bit, the Christa McAuliffe article has a brief description of the accident she was involved in, even though that description did not primarily involve her. I also do not like the sentence about the introduction of air reducing the fire intensity. I can't find that in the AIB report, and I intentionally took it out because it may not be true. Depending how much of the capsule was combustion gases versus oxygen, the introduction of fresh air may have actually increased the intensity of the fire. We can keep that sentence if you can cite it, otherwise it needs to go. Same with the amount of time oxygen flowed in, I also removed that for a reason. Do you feel so strongly about it that you wouldn't be willing to revert it back to the cited information that I had in there? Let me know, otherwise I want to go sentence by sentence and decide what stays and goes. As a last sidenote, when I asked you earlier in this thread to say specifically what you thought was extraneous, it is because I wanted to have this conversation without you reverting it. Now if I revert it, it will be edit warring, so I am kind of stuck...so next time, let's come to a consensus in the comments before going back into the article to make the change. Thanks! Kees08 (talk) 05:01, 23 September 2016 (UTC)
  • The article doesn't say "oxygen flowed for 23 seconds"; it says During the twenty-three seconds that the fire was fed by pure oxygen at slightly greater than atmospheric pressure.... This is the approximate time interval between the voltage surge (presumably the ignitor of the fire) observed at 23:30:55 (page 5–10: "The time of initiation probably coincides with the spacecraft power interruption at 23:30:55 GMT") and the time of cabin rupture, 23:31:19. The fire had been burning for about nine or ten seconds before the crew reported of fire. Actually, I see the report says on page 5–3 that the fire's phase 2—phase 3 switch occurred at 23:31:25, so it should probably be changed to "about thirty seconds". The fire started before the crew reported it. I don't understand what you mean by "That is sometime both after rupture and after communications with the crew officially ceased".
  • The report explicitly says on pages 5–3 through 5–4 that the fire quenched itself after the cabin was breached, which started replacing the pure oxygen with nitrogen-diluted air. The intensity of the fire was driven by the high-pressure pure oxygen (clean, hot burning), not by "fresh air" (relatively dirty, less intense burning). That is exactly why the pure oxygen was so dangerous. JustinTime55 (talk) 20:52, 26 September 2016 (UTC)
The oxygen did not stop flowing after cabin rupture (unless it is written elsewhere in that report). It actually explicitly states in the quote I have below that it continuted flowing. Therefore, for longer than 30 seconds, the fire would have been fed by oxygen at slightly greater than atmospheric pressure. The cabin rupturing would not decrease the oxygen flowrate to below atmospheric pressure, nor would it necessarily shut the oxygen off.
It explicitly states, on 5-4, that most of the fire was extinguished, but a localized fire existed, due to failed oxygen and water/glycol lines in this area. This is written right after a paragraph on phase three of the fire.

Although most of the fire inside the Command Module became extinguished shortly because of lack of oxygen, a localized, intense fire lingered in the area of the Environmental Control Unit. This unit is located in the left hand equipment bay, near the point where the fire is believed to have started. Failed oxygen and water/glycol lines in this area continued to supply oxygen and fuel to support the localized fire that melted the aft bulkhead and burned adjacent portions of the inner surface of the Command Module heat shield.

With both those statements refuted, would you mind if I reverted it back to the version I had? It is both accurate and properly cited; I would rather spend time expanding the article than making these two specific sentences work. If not, please provide the exact quote and page number which proves the statements true. Thanks! Kees08 (talk) 05:02, 27 September 2016 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Hold on. I don't agree that both statements have been refuted.

  • You still seem to be hung up on "oxygen flowing" and "greater than ambient pressure". No one ever said oxygen stopped flowing, only that the (approximately) 30 seconds was when the fire was fed by a sealed atmosphere of pure oxygen at average of 16.7 psi or greater (that's what "fed by pure oxygen at slightly greater than atmospheric pressure" is intended to mean), and that stopped being true after the rupture. Of course the oxygen flow was never shut off (presumably until the tanks depleted) and of course the supply pressure had to be greater than 14.7 in order for it to flow, but that's not at all what's being talked about now. The localized O2/glycol fire which continued was never mentioned in this article; we can add it as new information. But that doesn't change the fact that, once the high concentration O2/products of (relatively smokeless) combustion left through the rupture and 14.7 psi nitrogen/oxygen came in, the nature of the combustion in most of the cabin changed to less intense, smoky and sooty combustion. But the cabin combustion was not homogenous now, because of the localized O2/glycol fire still burning. This is getting complicated, isn't it?
  • The AIB report specifically says on page 5–3 (bottom) through 5–4 (top):

Following the loss of pressure in the Command Module and with fire now through the crew compartment, the remaining atmosphere quickly became deficient in oxygen so that it could not support continued combustion. Unlike the earlier stages where the flame was relatively smokeless, heavy smoke now formed and large amounts of soot were deposited on most spacecraft interior surfaces as they cooled.

I will modify it to describe the two different fires, and add the appropriate citations. JustinTime55 (talk) 13:20, 27 September 2016 (UTC)

It looks good now, I might touch up a word or rephrase a thing or two, but overall it summarizes the incident nicely. Sorry for being a jackass through this, and thanks for being patient with me. Also, I now have a book on Chaffee, so hopefully I can expand earlier sections as well! Kees08 (talk) 04:35, 28 September 2016 (UTC)