Apollo 11: Michael Collins returns to launch site on 50th anniversary

Armstrong on 20 July 1969 shows astronaut Buzz Aldrin on the Moon's Sea of Tranquility. Image AFP  NASA

Bridenstine's comments were the strongest sign to date that NASA remains committed to human missions to Mars as soon as feasible even as it pushes to accelerate a human return to the moon by 2024.

This week marks 50 years since Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin first took steps on the moon. Lego Master Builders will be at museum site to help attendees with another project: a 20-foot model of the SLS rocket.

It's 22nd July 1969, and the Apollo 11 astronauts, Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins, having just completed man's first lunar touch-down, are rocketing back towards earth at speeds of up to 25,000 miles per hour. But in the days before that landing in 1969, White House and NASA officials prepared for the worst.

HBO2 has set a marathon of the 12-part miniseries "From the Earth to the Moon" (8:45 a.m. EDT/PDT) about the American space program from the Mercury Seven astronauts to the final Apollo lunar landing in 1972.

The President who pledged to land a person on the Moon by the end of the last decade wasn't keen about space exploration. In 2004 President George W. Bush made a pitch to return to the moon as part of a manned mission to Mars, but the idea never gained traction in Congress.

When firstly asked about landing astronauts on Mars in 1969, shortly after the United States achieved the same feat on the moon, a mere 39 percent of Americans were in favor of it and 53 percent against it. Orion and the SLS rocket are years behind schedule and billions over budget.

Today's Minot Daily News reports a former Minot Air Force Base B-52 bomber aircrew member had a role in Apollo rescues. Hearing Collins' "personal account of what that was like was absolutely wonderful". One thing was notably missing, though: stacks of paper. There are significant opportunities for collaborations between the United Kingdom and U.S. over the next 50 years, and this statement of intent is a welcome step towards future missions. "We could have walked to the moon on the paper", Morgan said. Huntsville's rocket centre also had a special anniversary dinner on tap Tuesday night, with Aldrin and other retired Apollo and Skylab astronauts and rocket scientists.

NASA attributes the flapping to the Moon's microgravity in combination with the astronauts' rotating it back and forth multiple times, while attempting to stick the flagpole in the ground, giving it the effect of rippling.

50 years have now passed since the first Moon landing mission and while numerous celebrations around the world are taking place in view of such anniversary, this is a great opportunity to review and enjoy some good films about the event.



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