The Apollo Program

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The Apollo program is the US program to land human beings on the moon. Inaugurated May, 1961, by President J. Kennedy, the program suffered a serious setback in the preparatory phase when a fire broke out in the Apollo 1 space capsule (Jan. 27, 1967) during testing at Cape Kennedy. Three astronauts in the capsule were killed, the first deaths of US astronauts. Preparations for the moon landing included a number of preliminary missions and several moon landings were eventually made. Apollo 8 was the first manned moon orbit (Dec. 1968), and Apollo 11 was the first moon landing (July 20, 1969). In the latter, astronaut N. Armstrong became the first man to walk on the moon. Apollo 17 (Dec., 1972) was the last flight of the program. Apollo project US space project to land a person on the Moon, achieved 20 July 1969, when Neil Armstrong was the first to set foot there. He was accompanied on the Moons surface by Col Edwin E Aldrin, Jr; Michael Collins remained in the orbiting command module.

The program was announced 1961 by President Kennedy. The worlds most powerful rocket, Saturn V, was built to launch the Apollo spacecraft, which carried three astronauts. When the spacecraft was in orbit around the Moon, two astronauts would descend to the surface in a lunar module to take samples of rock and set up experiments that would send data back to Earth. The first Apollo mission carrying a crew, Apollo 7, Oct 1968, was a test flight in orbit around the Earth. After three other preparatory flights, Apollo 11 made the first lunar landing. Five more crewed landings followed the last 1972. The total cost of the program was over $24 billion. Apollo project The crew of Apollo 11, who made the first lunar landing in July 1969 (from left to right): Neil Armstrong, commander; Michael Collins, command module pilot; and Edwin Buzz Aldrin Jr, lunar module pilot. While Armstrong and Aldrin actually set foot on the Moons surface, Collins remained in orbit in the command module.

Apollo-Soyuz test project Joint US-Soviet space mission in which an Apollo and a Soyuz craft docked while in orbit around the Earth on 17 July 1975. The craft remained attached for two days and crew members were able to move from one craft to the other through an air lock attached to the nose of the Apollo. The mission was designed to test rescue procedures as well as having political significance. In the Apollo craft were Thomas Patten Stafford (commander), Vance DeVoe Brand, and Donald Kent Slayton; the Soyuz vehicle carried Alexei Archipovich Leonov (commander) and Valeri Nikolayevich Kubasov. The project began with the signing of an agreement May 1972 by US president Nixon and Soviet premier Kosygin.


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