DescriptionApollo 12: Command Module "SCE to AUX" Triple-Toggle Switch Assembly Replica. A 4.75" x 2.75" x 2.5" gray panel with three real, working switches with guards, sized accurately to the original found in the control panel of the Apollo CM. About 36 seconds into Apollo 12's trip to the moon, lightning struck the Saturn V rocket. Alarms and lights came on. The crew of Conrad, Bean, and Gordon didn't know what had happened. Just 16 seconds later (at about 3.5 miles altitude) came another strike. Commander Conrad radioed to Houston: "Okay, we just lost the platform gang. I don't know what happened here. We had everything in the world drop out." A young environmental control engineer in Mission Control remembered that there was an obscure switch on the control panel that would put the Signal Conditioning Equipment on an auxiliary setting. He told Flight Director Gerry Griffin to "Switch SCE to AUX." Capcom relayed that to the crew: "Apollo 12, Houston, try SCE to Auxiliary, over." Conrad's response to the order was, "What the hell is that?" Luckily, Alan Bean, remembering an early simulation, knew where the switch was, flipped it to auxiliary which restored telemetry and saved the mission. To this day, "Try SCE to AUX" is a term familiar to geeks of all ages; it means coming up with an ingenious plan to avert a catastrophe. First of these we have encountered. Excellent.
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