Posted tagged ‘First Steps on the moon’

Apollo 11 Moon Landing – 50th Anniversary

July 17, 2019

 

London, UK - November 15th 2018: The badge of the historic Apollo 11 moon landing, pictured over the flag of the United States of America.

I was twelve and a half years old when Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon. I was captivated by NASA’s (and our countries) quest to land a man on the moon. For a kid it was everything you dreamed of. It was an adventure to the edge of the unknown. There were great risks. And the astronauts were larger than life.

I don’t remember much about Project Mercury. But I remember getting interested in the space program during Project Gemini. I put together a model of the the Gemini space capsule. I watched and read as much as I could about all the Gemini missions.

Logo for the 50th anniversary of the moon landing

My interest was at it’s highest during the Apollo program. I put together models of the Saturn V rocket, the command module, and the lunar module. My brother and I went to the nearby park to get sand and used it to make a topographic moonscape of Apollo 11’s landing area on the ping pong table in our basement. (The local news paper printed a topographic map of the landing area on the front page). We did this for all the Apollo moon missions.

When Apollo 8 telecast live video (click here) of the Earth as they circled the moon on Christmas eve 1968, it revealed to me the reality of a moon landing that the men of NASA were attempting. It was amazing to see.

 

Every time I look at some of the videos of the space program it takes me back to that time. I feel the same emotions as I did when I saw it happen the first time.

Here are a few videos about Apollo 11 and NASA. The difficulty and the risk of attempting a moon landing is very clear in these videos. Today we in America are so risk averse, I doubt if we would ever try something this daring again.

 

FAILURE IS NOT AN OPTION (click here) is a video about the whole space program from Project Mercury through the Apollo Program. This might be the best documentary about NASA that I have seen.

 

THE JOURNEYS OF APOLLO (click here)  is about the Apollo project. This is outstanding.

 

LAUNCH OF APOLLO 11 (CBS COVERAGE) (click here). Watch how slowly the Saturn V lifts off the launching pad. How does it not tip over?

 

APOLLO 11 LANDING FROM PDI TO TOUCHDOWN (click here). This is a great video. It explains the Power Decent Initiative in the first 1:30 of the video. It then shows the Apollo 11 lunar landing (with explanations) from the window of the Lunar Module. It also has the audio of Armstrong, Aldrin and mission control. This is awesome!

 

APOLLO 11 FIRST STEPS ON THE MOON (click here). This is a video of Armstrong’s first steps on the moon. This video is taken from the window of the LM.

 

APOLLO 11 LUNAR LIFTOFF (click here). This video shows the LM lifting off from the moon. It is a video (plus audio) taken from the window of the LM.

 

If you want to see what the liftoff from the moon looks like from the ground, watch this video (click here) of Apollo 17 (the last moon landing in 1972) taking off from the moon. The video is taken from a camera mounted on the Lunar Rover. (This is not Apollo 11. This is Apollo 17 taking off from the lunar surface)

 

THE SATURN V ROCKET STORY (click here): One of the most incredible achievements of the Apollo project was the Saturn V rocket. If the Saturn V had not worked, the rest didn’t matter. There was no moon landing without this marvel of engineering.

 

These videos, and others that I’ve watched, take me back to a great period in my life. If you are old enough to remember when this happened I hope you enjoy these videos. If you are young, you probably won’t know what a slide rule is. But ask yourself; How did they do this without modern day technology? Amazing!