Apollo 13 Simulation

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ITSM Simulation

Experience the thrilling reality of the Apollo 13 Simulation game

Learn and experience the benefits of ITIL® best practice solutions during the ‘Apollo 13 – an ITSM case experience’

“Houston … We have a problem!”

Fifty-five hours and fifty-five minutes into the mission. Imagine you are on board Apollo 13 when you and your your crew members hear a loud ‘bang’. The bang is the explosion of the liquid oxygen tank #2 in the Service Module, providing vital oxygen used by the fuel cells that are Apollo’s primary power source. The backup battery-powered electric supply in the Command and Service Module (CSM) has a lifetime of up to ten hours. Unfortunately, you are 87 hours from home. Your spacecraft is slowly dying. You have a serious problem, unless you and the ground support staff start working as a team to solve this problem. But remember, time is running out. Fast.

Welcome to the ‘Apollo 13 – an ITSM case experience’ simulation game

One-day training offering real life situations.

The ‘Apollo 13 – an ITSM case experience’ simulation game is an intense, one-day training program in which ITIL concepts and processes are experienced through the use of an interactive game. In this training, real life situations taken from the Apollo 13 mission are simulated. You will work in a team, playing the roles of the mission control centre in Houston. Your mission: bring the crippled spacecraft and its crew home safely. By doing so, you and your colleagues will learn and experience all the benefits of ITIL best practice solutions.

What is the simulation all about?

In this game, you will work in a team consisting of 8 to 12 mission control centre members. This team will experience the four phases of the mission (as described below), facing mission events and situations. In each round, the team undergoes the following steps: designing the process, running the simulation, reflecting, and reporting. Throughout the game various ITIL processes are necessary to enable ground staff and crew to resolve problems and make timely changes to the spacecraft configuration and its trajectory. This game can also be played with multiple teams of 8 persons.

Post-mission reviews

During post-mission reviews discussions will take place about what went well and what went wrong. Is there room for improvement in the way you and your mission control colleagues co-operated? A review panel will discuss the following:

  • Determining the root cause of failure (Problem Management).
  • Recommending a service improvement plan (Service Level Management).
  • Working proactively to prevent future accidents (Problem and Change Management).
  • Game approach.
  • Reflection on the team process.
  • Solving process errors.
  • Transferring the learning experience to daily practice.

The uniqueness of this game?

  • All ITIL processes are addressed within the simulation.
  • The entire lifecycle of services is used within the learning process.
  • A balanced set of performance indicators for service delivery is used.
  • Service level reporting is required at the end of each round.
  • Real life situations are used for reflection purposes.

What customers say

  • ‘Really good, fun and an original way of simulating reality’.
  • ‘A real eye opener – which processes are running in parallel right now and which ones are important at that time’?
  • ‘We became aware of the interdependencies of processes’.
  • ‘Confronts you with decisions and choices that will have to be made’.
  • ‘Helps understand how priorities change as time goes by…’
  • ‘We can see the cost of doing things wrong’.
  • ‘Time pressure is like real life – it’s about planning and making choices’.
  • ‘We have become aware of the chaos and confusion in the processes and of our own responsibilities’.


ITIL® is a registered trade mark of AXELOS Limited, used under permission of AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved.

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