Space Race Quiz ANSWER- How many have flown on a Saturn V?

Space Race Quiz ANSWER – How Many Astronauts have Flown on a Saturn V Rocket?

This was the most challenging quiz yet. Even experienced students of space history seem to get this one wrong. Most people answer either 30 or 33. The surprising answer is 26!

To find the correct answer, first we need to know which manned missions used the Saturn V rocket. They were:

  1. Apollo 8 (Borman, Anders, Lovell*)
  2. Apollo 9 (McDivitt, Schweickart, Scott*)
  3. Apollo 10 (Stafford, Cernan*, Young)
  4. Apollo 11 (Armstrong, Aldrin, Collins)
  5. Apollo 12 (Conrad, Bean, Gordon)
  6. Apollo 13 (Lovell**, Haise, Swigert)
  7. Apollo 14 (Shepard, Mitchell, Roosa)
  8. Apollo 15 ( Scott**, Irwin, Worden)
  9. Apollo 16 (Young**, Duke, Mattingly)
  10. Apollo 17 (Cernan**, Schmitt, Evans)

*  First Saturn V flight
** Second Saturn V flight

Saturn V Apollo 11 Launch (Image Credit: NASA)

Saturn V Apollo 11 Launch (Image Credit: NASA)

Remember that Apollo 1 (which never flew) and Apollo 7 were both Saturn 1B’s (not a Saturn V). Even if you correctly identify the Apollo 1 and Apollo 7 missions as non-Saturn V, the careful student of space history still has many opportunities to make mistakes in this calculation. For example, many people forget that even though Apollo 9 was intended to checkout the LEM in low Earth orbit (and never went to the Moon), it was a Saturn V flight. Other people miscalculate because they forget to count Apollo 13 (again, it didn’t land on the Moon, but it was a Saturn V flight).

The single biggest mistake is over-counting the number of Astronauts, since several of them have flown twice on a Saturn V. In the mission list (above) I’ve marked their first flights with a single asterisk, and their second flight with two asterisks. Here’s the complete list (in alphabetical order by last name, with missions shown):

  1. Aldrin (Apollo 11)
  2. Anders (Apollo 8)
  3. Armstrong (Apollo 11)
  4. Bean (Apollo 12)
  5. Borman (Apollo 8)
  6. Cernan (Apollo 10, Apollo 17)
  7. Collins (Apollo 11)
  8. Conrad (Apollo 12)
  9. Duke (Apollo 16)
  10. Evans (Apollo 17)
  11. Gordon (Apollo 12)
  12. Haise (Apollo 13)
  13. Irwin (Apollo 15)
  14. Lovell (Apollo 8, Apollo 13)
  15. Mattingly (Apollo 16)
  16. McDivitt (Apollo 9)
  17. Mitchell (Apollo 14)
  18. Roosa (Apollo 14)
  19. Schmitt (Apollo 17)
  20. Schweickart (Apollo 9)
  21. Scott (Apollo 9, Apollo 15)
  22. Shepard (Apollo 14)
  23. Stafford (Apollo 10)
  24. Swigert (Apollo 13)
  25. Worden (Apollo 15)
  26. Young (Apollo 10, Apollo 16)

The Saturn V only launched from NASA’s Launch Complex 39 A and B at Kennedy Space Center.

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2 Responses to Space Race Quiz ANSWER- How many have flown on a Saturn V?

  1. matthewota says:

    I got it right at 26…I am a consummate space historian

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