48 Years Ago Apollo 11 Astronauts Set Foot On The Moon.

48 years ago Apollo 11 astronaut, Neil Armstrong was the first man to step onto the another world. Neil and Buzz Aldrin were the first two people to step foot on the moon on July 20, 1969. When Neil stepped off that ladder and on the moon he mutter the famous words, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”

Apollo 11 was launched aboard the mighty Saturn V rocket from the historical launch complex 39A. Launch complex 39A is where SpaceX is currently launching their Falcon 9 and soon will launch their Falcon 9 Heavy. 

The primary mission

The primary objective of Apollo 11 was to complete a national goal set by President John F. Kennedy on May 25, 1961: perform a crewed lunar landing and return to Earth.

Additional flight objectives included scientific exploration by the lunar module, or LM, crew; deployment of a television camera to transmit signals to Earth; and deployment of a solar wind composition experiment, seismic experiment package and a Laser Ranging Retroreflector. During the exploration, the two astronauts were to gather samples of lunar-surface materials for return to Earth. They also were to extensively photograph the lunar terrain, the deployed scientific equipment, the LM spacecraft, and each other, both with still and motion picture cameras. This was to be the last Apollo mission to fly a “free-return” trajectory, which would enable a return to Earth with no engine firing, providing a ready abort of the mission at any time prior to lunar orbit insertion.

view more Apollo 11 images on the NASA website.

Crew
Neil Armstrong, Commander
Edwin E. Aldrin Jr., Lunar Module Pilot
Michael Collins, Command Module Pilot

Payload
Columbia (CSM-107)
Eagle (LM-5)

Launch
July 16, 1969; 9:32 a.m. EDT
Launch Pad 39A
Saturn-V AS-506
High Bay 1
Mobile Launcher Platform-1
Firing Room 1

Orbit
Altitude: 118.65 miles
Inclination: 32.521 degrees
Orbits: 30 revolutions
Duration: eight days, three hours, 18 min, 35 seconds
Distance: 953,054 miles
Lunar Location: Sea of Tranquility
Lunar Coordinates: .71 degrees north, 23.63 degrees east

Landing
July 24, 1969; 12:50 p.m. EDT
Pacific Ocean
Recovery Ship: USS Hornet

Check out this post about Astronaut Gene Cernan, The last man to walk on the moon on Apollo 17

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