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Manual Below Tranquility Base: An Apollo 11 Memoir

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His grandmother had advised him not to do it if he felt danger; he had agreed, according to the book "Rocket Men" by Craig Nelson.

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As he climbed down to the foot of the ladder, he observed that Eagle's footpads had sunk into the ground by only an inch or two, and the surface appeared very fine grained. Then, over the radio: "Okay. I'm going to step off the LM now. According to Armstrong, the line wasn't scripted. One problem: without the indefinite article "a man" , it wasn't grammatically correct.

Armstrong said he meant to say it, but agreed it was inaudible.


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Its color varies with the angle of the Sun: from brown to grey to black as coal. And the lower level of gravity takes getting used to. Over the course of two-and-a-half hours, Armstrong picks up piles and piles of Moon rocks and takes photographs. Aldrin installs a seismometer and two other scientific instruments. They plant the US flag, and leave behind a host of items including a medal honoring the first man in space, Russia's Yuri Gagarin. Of the black and white photos, and in color, only four show Armstrong.

The majority are of Aldrin. By the time they were set to go, the astronauts were covered in dust. In the cockpit, "It smelled, to me, like wet ashes in a fireplace," said Armstrong. Happily, the lunar module's engine worked, it rendezvoused back with Columbia, and the trio began the long journey home.

By the end, shorn of its extra modules and fuel, the capsule weighs only 12, pounds, or 0. On July 24, it enters the atmosphere, becoming for a while a fireball in the sky before deploying three parachutes and splashing down safely into the Pacific. Elite divers extract the men, who are unharmed but malodorous after their journey, to transfer them by helicopter to the ship. There, they are placed in quarantine over the fear at the time that they may be contaminated with extraterrestrial microorganisms.

At their first press conference, three weeks later, reporters asked the three men, now global heroes, whether they would ever consider returning to the Moon. It was not until Donald Trump came to office that the US would decide to return to the Moon, under the Artemis program, named for Apollo's twin sister. From the Soviet Union's pioneering satellite to the first man on the Moon 50 years ago, here are 10 key dates in space exploration.

Quest: The only peer-reviewed history magazine on space: V23N4

On October 4, , Moscow launches the first artificial space satellite, Sputnik 1, ushering in the Cold War tussle for the cosmos. The beach ball-sized aluminium sphere takes 98 minutes to orbit the Earth and sends back the first message from space, simple "beep-beep-beep" radio signals.

On November 3, Sputnik 2 carries the first living being to fully orbit the Earth, a small street dog called Laika. She dies after a few hours. On April 12, , Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin becomes the first man in space, completing a single, minute orbit. Twenty-three days later, Alan Shepard is the first American in space when he makes a minute trip on May 5. The biggest man-made structure in space, it orbits Earth 16 times a day. The ISS, in which 16 countries participate, took over from the Russian space station Mir, which was brought back to Earth in after 15 years in orbit.

On April 12, , the US space shuttle Columbia, the first reusable manned spacecraft, makes its first voyage. Two US shuttles were destroyed in flight, with the loss of 14 astronauts: Challenger in and Columbia in On April 25, , the Hubble is the first space telescope to be placed into orbit, at kilometres miles from Earth. Thirteen metres 42 feet long, Hubble revolutionises astronomy, allowing scientists to observe the planets and most distant stars and galaxies.

On April 28, , Italian American multi-millionaire Dennis Tito, 60, becomes the world's first space tourist. On September 29, , US company SpaceX is the first private venture to successfully launch a rocket into Earth's orbit, the Falcon 1.

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On November 12, , the European Space Agency places a small robot, Philae, on a comet more than million kilometres from Earth. The first comet lander is part of a mission aiming to explore the origins of the Solar System. The man-made object that is furthest away from the Earth is the unmanned US spaceship Voyager 1, launched in September and still travelling. In August it made it into interstellar space, about 13 billion miles from Earth. Explore further.

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Apollo 11 Ascent From Tranquility Base - rotation-corrected for proper "horizon up" viewing

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Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Everything up? Follow the trajectory of a mission to space from pre-flight simulations all the way through to the launch and successful recovery of the crew in one of the most significant missions in human history. Though Stachurski had never even seen a missile, let alone launched one, it was this experience that led him to be called for an interview with NASA, and ultimately gave him a front-row seat for the lunar landing in Get A Copy.

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