Tough Trivia, 5/20/21

Today’s Tough trivia question has to do with the worlds of Entertainment: The entertainment industry gives a slew of awards. We have the Oscar and the Emmy for movies and television, the Tony for stage plays, the Grammy for music, the Hugo, Edgar, and Pulitzer for literature, and scores more. Do you know who (or what) those seven are named for? And which organizations, specifically, do the awarding? How about when they were first awarded?

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400px-Saturn_V_launches
Photos of all 13 Saturn V launches.

Yesterday’s question was: The Saturn V rocket stack was the super heavy-lift launch vehicle that took the US manned space program to the Moon. It was—and remains—the tallest, heaviest, and most powerful rocket brought to operational status. It holds the records for the heaviest payload launched and largest payload capacity to low Earth orbit (310,000 pounds). It is also, still, the only launch vehicle to carry humans beyond low Earth orbit. Fifteen were built, but only thirteen were flown, all launching from Kennedy Space Center, in Florida, between November 9, 1967 (the uncrewed Apollo 4) and May 14, 1973 (Skylab). Do you know how tall it was? How heavy? And what percentage of the stack actually returned to Earth from the Apollo missions to the Moon?

The answer is:

The full Saturn V stack was 363 feet tall, and massed between 6,221,000 and 6,540,000 pounds (depending on the mission), with a maximum diameter (at the bottom) of 33 feet.

The Command Module was the only piece of the entire stack that returned to Earth. The three propulsion stages were destroyed getting to orbit. The lower portion of the Lunar Module remained on the surface of the Moon. The Ascent stage landed on the Moon, and then returned the astronauts to lunar orbit to rendezvous with the Command and Service Module. The Service Module was discarded and on the way back to Earth. The Command Module was the only piece of the entire stack that returned to Earth. It was 11 feet 5 inches tall, with a diameter of 12 feet 10 inches, and a mass of 12,250 pounds (plus the returning astronauts). In addition, the six missions that landed on the Moon brought back a total of 842 pounds of Moon rocks.

So the piece of the stack that returned was 3.1% of the height that was launched, and 0.2% of the weight that was launched.

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Ian’s Tough Trivia is a daily feature of this blog (Monday’s category is History; Tuesday is Arts; Wednesday is Science; Thursday is Entertainment; and Friday is Grab Bag). Each day, I post a tough question, as well as the answer to the previous day’s question. Simply comment on this post with your answer. I’ll approve the comments after the next question is posted. Sure, you can probably find the answers by searching the web, but what’s the fun in that?

And if you’ve got a favorite trivia question—or even just a topic for which you’d like to see a question—let me know! Reader participation is warmly encouraged.

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