HAMPTON, Va., Feb. 19 (UPI) -- The historic Apollo 1 capsule has been moved to a newer, environmentally controlled warehouse at NASA's Langley Research Center in Hampton, Va.
National Aeronautics and Space Administration scientists say the move, made over the weekend, provides better protection for the spacecraft.
Despite routine repairs made throughout the years, NASA officials said the original secure storage container where the vehicle was housed could not be maintained effectively to preserve the capsule.
Astronauts Lt. Col. Virgil Grissom, Lt. Col. Edward White, and Roger Chaffee died when a flash fire swept through the spacecraft during a launch pad test at Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Jan. 27, 1967. Originally known as the AS-204 mission, it was renamed Apollo 1 in honor of the crew.
NASA says that tragedy led to design and engineering changes and increased the overall safety for future Apollo missions and six successful lunar landings.