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This never really happened in the Apollo missions, or any other rocket launch... but what would theoretically happen if something exploded (let's say, the oxygen tanks) and caused a hole in the side of the spacecraft?

Would the crew be sucked out and killed instantly, similar to an airplane, or would the spacecraft automatically try to correct the error and seal the hole?

Also, in the unlikely chance that a hole appears on the side of a spacecraft, what is the normal NASA procedure?

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  • $\begingroup$ Depends on how big the hole is. Except fot automatic sealing and correcting, nothing does that. $\endgroup$ – Organic Marble Oct 14 '16 at 1:07
  • $\begingroup$ @OrganicMarble So if there is a large enough hole on the side of the spacecraft, all the astronauts are goners? $\endgroup$ – Frank Oct 14 '16 at 1:08
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    $\begingroup$ For a big enough value of large, yes, unless they were already suited up for some reason. $\endgroup$ – Organic Marble Oct 14 '16 at 1:10
  • $\begingroup$ Shuttle and station have leak procedures but they are for tiny holes. I'm not able to write up an answer now but this may have been asked already. $\endgroup$ – Organic Marble Oct 14 '16 at 1:12
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    $\begingroup$ "what would theoretically happen if something exploded (let's say, the oxygen tanks) and caused a hole in the side of the spacecraft?" The obvious case study: Apollo 13 $\endgroup$ – user Oct 14 '16 at 14:09