The Apollo Missions Astronauts

As part of the Apollo program, from 1969-1972, six spacecraft sent astronauts on missions to explore the lunar surface. On July 20, Armstrong and Aldrin set foot onto its surface as their lunar module called Eagle docked with Eagle rocket spacecraft.

After they reviewed their equipment, Armstrong made his famous quote about one small step for man but one giant leap for humanity. They conducted several experiments.

Neil Armstrong

In 1969, an awkward Ohio pilot made history when he emerged from the lunar module Eagle with his famous quote: “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Unfortunately, however, his mission wasn’t easy and involved multiple mishaps that threatened his life and hospitalization for two days before eventually recovering with lasting physical issues from this accident.

The primary scientific goal of the mission was to collect lunar samples for return to Earth, but other objectives included using television cameras to transmit images of lunar surface conditions and astronauts as they worked, taking still photographs, gathering soil samples for study of how it formed, as well as gathering rock samples which helped scientists better understand its formation.

On their journey to the moon, the crew had to perform several midcourse corrections in order to keep the CSM in orbit. For instance, during one such maneuver the SPS had to burn for three seconds instead of its originally-programmed two, leading to an increased distance between CSM and LM – enough for rendezvous but less time spent exploring its surface.

On their inaugural EVA, astronauts used still and motion picture cameras to take photographs of each other as well as of the lunar surface. Additionally, seismometer and magnetometer devices were deployed and collected materials ejected from Copernicus Crater as well as rock/soil samples taken by Surveyor 3 spacecraft for comparison purposes.

As soon as they returned, the crew forwent their scheduled four-hour rest period and went back outside to collect more samples. When they returned to the LM, they left behind a 1.5-inch silicon disk bearing goodwill messages from 73 nations as well as names of NASA and congressional leaders as well as a memorial medallion commemorating those astronauts and cosmonauts who had perished either during training or space flight; additionally they brought samples back from the Moon to help scientists better understand its formation and subsequent catastrophic change some 3.8 billion years ago.

Buzz Aldrin

Aldrin joined Neil Armstrong on the lunar surface soon after they disembarked their Lunar Module Eagle and planted their feet into its soil, marking an historic moment of peace and accomplishment that became a beloved image of American achievement, published across books, magazines, movies and media platforms. Aldrin remains a proponent of space exploration; participating in numerous ventures related to it including an effort to return to the moon with a private spacecraft.

Aldrin was raised in Montclair, New Jersey as the son of a United States Army Chaplain and aviation pioneer. After early graduation from Montclair High School he attended West Point, graduating third in his class. Following this he became an Air Force pilot specializing in F-86 Sabre Jet combat missions during Korea War before being stationed at Bitburg Air Base Germany until eventually leaving to complete a graduate degree at Massachusetts Institute of Technology before entering NASA’s astronaut training program.

Apollo 11 marked the first of six Apollo program landings. Additionally, he served as command pilot of two-man Apollo-Soyuz Test Project mission and was trained to fly both Lunar Module and Space Shuttle missions.

On the lunar surface, Aldrin and his partner James Irwin performed extravehicular activities (EVAs), collecting samples and photographs. Their famous image on the surface shows Armstrong reflected in Aldrin’s visor with Aldrin’s glove sporting its sewn-in eagle symbol clearly visible. After nearly two hours on the moon surface, they returned to Lunar Module and climbed back up its ladder before rejoining Collins in Command Module Odyssey.

On Apollo 13, Aldrin played a crucial role in its successful rescue when an oxygen tank exploded 56 hours into their flight and crippled their lunar module. He helped design the Lunar Roving Vehicle (LRV), an innovative device that allowed astronauts to travel great distances more rapidly than walking would allow.

Michael Collins

Michael Collins is often described as the “forgotten astronaut” of Apollo 11, being less visible among his crewmates and often unnoticed in terms of achievements. Unfortunately, however, this was to their detriment as it is due to hard work and meticulousness that made this mission successful. Collins was the third member to travel to the Moon while conducting spacewalks from there as well. Additionally he played an essential part in furthering NASA technology development through test pilot duties within US Air Force Reserve as a test pilot and later major general.

Born on October 31, 1930 in Rome, he followed a traditional path to NASA: starting as a fighter pilot before progressing through West Point Military Academy’s ranks to becoming an astronaut candidate himself in 1963 – eventually joining Apollo 11’s crew that year.

The Apollo spacecraft consisted of two modules – a Command Module where astronauts lived) and Service Module which contained all spacecraft systems. Most of their journey took place inside the Command Module; when docking with Lunar Module for entry into lunar orbit they moved into Lunar Module for docking to enter lunar orbit and once close enough started their engine powered descent down towards lunar surface with radio interference between both modules producing a whistling noise heard during landing process.

Once they had successfully landed, the astronauts commenced collecting samples from the lunar surface and taking photos of Earth from space – including its iconic “Earthrise”. Additionally, in addition to performing their regular duties, astronauts had to perform manual maneuvers during descent and landing procedures.

Armstrong and Aldrin spent two days exploring the Moon before returning to Eagle. Once inside Eagle, Armstrong and Aldrin began their historic moonwalk – staying away for 21.6 hours during which time they collected geological samples, seismometer readings, laser reflector readings and devices designed to measure density in its atmosphere.

David Scott

David Scott was the first American to set foot on the moon as commander of Apollo 15. Born in San Antonio, Texas and earning two degrees from MIT before serving his military duty as test pilot before joining NASA’s third group of astronauts in 1963, Scott made history when he became America’s first man on the lunar surface.

While training for his mission, Scott became interested in geology and met Lee Silver. Silver asked Scott and other astronauts to compare suites of rocks or environments described by Silver for further understanding of the environment – something which continues today among scientists.

Apollo 9 marked Scott and crewmates James McDivitt and Russell Schweickart’s test flight of all of the systems required for lunar landing, docked the command module with lunar module for first time and returned safely back to Earth with splashdown in Western Pacific after 10 days of exploration.

In October 1963, Scott was chosen for the next Gemini mission. Unfortunately, their spacecraft experienced issues when one of its thruster rings unexpectedly opened too soon causing it to yaw and roll at dangerous rates – necessitating Armstrong using the reentry thrusters, which expended 75% of fuel available to him for that system.

Scott and Irwin spent 66 hours aboard their Lunar Roving Vehicle (LRV), traveling the surface three times and collecting 77 kilograms of rock samples as well as installing an ALSEP package to monitor its environment.

After Apollo 13 returned, Scott served as technical advisor for director Ron Howard on all ten episodes of From the Earth to the Moon, an Emmy-winning HBO TV series that won multiple Emmy awards. Though retired from NASA in 1977, Scott continued his connection to spaceflight by working in commercial space sector jobs and providing consultation for media pertaining to space exploration.

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