Competition is always a good thing. There’s no telling when we would have gone to the moon (if at all that would have happened) were not for the development of a space race between the U.S. and the Soviet Union.
The U.S. felt challenged to and wanted their dominant stature in the world scene after the Soviets launched their own Sputnik satellite in 1957.
In 1961, John F. Kennedy assumed the mantles of power and pledged to fast track America back to becoming a tech powerhouse. For that to happen, they needed to surpass the fast-rising Soviets who had already launched their very first manned spaceflight in the same year.
NASA launched the Apollo program after collecting vast amounts of resources. With a budget of about $25 billion and a workforce of about 400,000 people, they set out to conquer the heavens.
On paper, the plan was simple. Saturn V, a pretty powerful rocket, would be able to carry the Apollo command and service module and the attached lunar module which was intended to touch down on the Moon.
The objective was to launch the necessary hardware into Earth’s orbit before heading for the moon. Working as a team, Collins was to remain behind while Armstrong and Aldrin would make way into the lunar module and descend onto the moon’s surface.
Understandably, special precautions were taken because the first crewed flight, the Apollo 1, was unsuccessful in 1967.
During a test routine, a fire ravaged the command module and 3 astronauts were consumed by the flames. After the incident, manned space flights were suspended for a while.
To avert such a scenario on the Apollo 11 mission, everything was meticulously planned. Still, there was a technical hitch that occurred with the communications department. With alarm messages blearing and the lunar module touching down at a different location from the targeted region, it’s safe to say that even the best preparations can only take you so far.
With about 500 million people watching from all around the world, Neil Armstrong made history as the first man to step on the moon. Cognizant of the feat he’d just accomplished, he served some poetic justice in what will live long in the hearts of many, “One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”
Over a 2 hour period, the pair walked outside the lunar model collecting samples from the surface, taking shots and conducting a number of scientific experiments. Once their exploration was over, they proceeded back to the command and service module. Four days later, they splashed down on the Pacific Ocean.
By 1972, the U.S. had successfully conducted 6 moon missions. Even with this as an established fact, there are countless conspiracy theories that suggest that the moon landings were actually staged.
While it’s true that conspiracy theories tend to take on a life of their own in social circles, it would be remiss if we didn’t point out that NASA has had a reconnaissance craft orbiting the Moon since 2009. Over the years, the spacecraft has been sending back high-resolution images back to Earth. In the pictures, there is clear evidence showing signs of human contact on the Moon, this includes wheel tracks and footprints from the various Apollo missions.
To promote awareness about the happenings in our cosmos, AstroReality has partnered up with a like-minded organization, ShareSpace.
Their focus on promoting STEAM education among learners is quite an admirable quality that aligns with some of our objectives.
Through our collaboration, we’ve been able to come up with an awesome Giant Moon Map that’s come to be after harnessing the power of augmented reality. We’re quite hopeful that the launch of this Giant Moon Map on July 20th at Time Square will provide necessary answers to the naysayers.
As a space enthusiast looking to update your collection, we recommend keeping tabs with our latest offering, From July 16 to July 20, we offer 20% OFF for our signature products – LUNAR, plus a free LUNAR Coin with any LUNAR purchase.
Relive your own journey to the Moon, now.