August 19, 2011 | Barb Carr

Astronaut Ken Mattingly to Share True Story Behind Apollo 13

One of the real-life heroes of Apollo 13, veteran Apollo and space shuttle astronaut Ken Mattingly shares the true story behind the most inspiring example of crisis management in recent memory.

Beginning his career as a Naval officer and aviator, T.K. Mattingly became one of the select individuals chosen for the Apollo Space Program in 1966. He was responsible for the development of the lunar space suite and back-pack, and served on the support crews for Apollo 8 (the first lunar orbit) and Apollo 11 (the first lunar landing). Designated as Command Module Pilot (CMP) for Apollo 13, he was pulled from the flight for medical reasons, but later flew as CMP for Apollo 16, the next-to-last lunar mission.

In 1973 Mattingly became a key member of the fledgling Space Shuttle Program.  He served as lead astronaut for the Shuttle Design Support Team and provided lead astronaut support in preparing for the first shuttle flight.  He served as back up Commander for STS missions 2 and 3, and as Commander for the last orbital test flight, STS 4.  He led the development of national security missions to be flown on the Shuttle and Commanded the first classified shuttle mission, STS-51C.

Promoted to Rear Admiral in 1985, he pioneered the use of commercial contracting procedures for military space systems, overseeing a billion dollar budget spread over 200 contracts.  In 1989, he retired from government service to focus on the commercialization of space.  He led the highly successful Atlas program in providing commercial launch services for the private sector and planning for a fully reusable launch system.  As President of the Rocket Development Company, he was leading development of low cost commercial launch systems that maintained constellations of satellites and helped revolutionize global communications at the turn of the century.

Hear his story at the premier root cause analysis event for 2012, The Global TapRooT® Summit, February 29 to March 2, 2012.

Root Cause Analysis
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