Apollo 11On May 25, 1961, John F. Kennedy set the goal of landing the first men on the moon. This began project Apollo. The men who served on the project were brave, determined men. The project faced many obstacles including Apollo 1, where every soul was lost. But through all the challenges, mistakes were learned from, making the Apollo 11 mission successful. The men on Apollo 11, Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins, are examples of true American heroes; alongside the rest of the astronauts.
Apollo 11 was to be the first manned mission to the moon. This, however, was not their only objective. In addition, they would perform scientific exploration, transmit radio waves to earth, place seismic monitors, and collect lunar rock samples (Apollo 11 mission overview). Indeed this mission would not only be a great success, but it would also pave the way for future space travel and more moon landings. The Previous Missions
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Apollo 1 was supposed to be the first manned Apollo mission. However, on January 27, 1967, during a preflight test, a fire broke out in the command module. This killed the entire crew (Apollo Missions). The cause of the casualties was later determined to be from a faulty door that trapped the crew. Even though this was a tragic accident it possibly saved many future lives. After NASA found the problem, they were able to fix it so it wouldn’t happen again.
Apollo 7 was a test of the command module and the service module (Apollo Missions). The crew launched from Kennedy Space Center on October 11, 1968, and they returned on October 22, 1968. The tests ran as planned, except for a few minor bumps. Shortly after takeoff, one of the crew members developed a cold, and the rest of the crew soon caught the cold. This caused some concern with wearing helmets during reentry because the pressure of sneezing might blow out their eardrums.
Apollo 8 was a test of the communication and path correction systems (Apollo Missions). Apollo 8’s other objective was to orbit the moon. On the morning of December 21, 1968, Apollo 8 launched. On December 24, Apollo 8 allowed the first humans to see the dark side of the moon. Then on December 27, Apollo 8 reentered the Earth’s Atmosphere and was picked up by the USS Yorktown.
Apollo 9 had the final test mission. Its task was to test the lunar lander. To do this, they would maneuver it in space and redock to the command module (Apollo Missions). On March 3, 1969, Apollo 9 launched from Kennedy Space Center. Schweickart, the crew’s lunar module pilot, was supposed to have an EVA, leave the spacecraft to test the external rescue techniques.
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