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Thread: Apollo 11 Fifty Year Anniversary Events

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    Apollo 11 Fifty Year Anniversary Events

    Perhaps the greatest landmark acheivement of the human species is that of the Moon landing on July 20th, 1969. Roughly 500 million watched the event on tv. The world may have been more unified that day than any other.

    So I thought that at least there ought to be a thread that lists events that honor that moment. Perhaps some of you will list events that will be on-line or on tv, and I would enjoy seeing what's coming our way.

    Here's just one currently at Purdue displaying items from Neil Armstrong.

    Another thread that I hope someone starts would be to read the accounts from the old folks who watched the event. [I was a stranger to a family who took me into their trailer home to join them in watching the landing. I saw three astronauts take that first step.]
    Last edited by George; 2019-Mar-22 at 05:04 PM.
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    I think it would be appropriate to post personal observations here.
    I couldn't attend the event as I had just graduated and in a brand new job without any vacation for a year. So I was glued to the launch on TV as well as the first steps IIRC late in the evening for me (CDT). I was thrilled by both. After nearly a decade of work, missteps, NASA put together a wonderous event.
    I'm still waiting for the next steps on the Lunar surface.

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    I'm 63. My father was enthusiastic but he knew little about the stuff. (I asked him what gravity is. He answered and I could tell he was pretending to know. ) We watched all the coverage together and he'd give me a serious look and stress how historic this all was.

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    i was 22 and studying in London when it took place. I can remember the landing and the 1st few steps and then nothing. I fell a sleep.
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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    i was 22 and studying in London when it took place. I can remember the landing and the 1st few steps and then nothing. I fell a sleep.
    I hesitated to post because while i remember watching on tv , and i know I was in Bristol UK, i cannot remember whose tv it was. Earlier that year I watched Concorde take off from Filton and I remember that and the waiting and the surprise. Which was that Trubshaw took off on the first run. The surprise on the moon landing was a moment when the camera was accidentally pointed at the sun and the picture died . For me it was a good year, I was also 22 atthe time.
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    Around the 40th Anniversary, I asked my Mom what she remembered of watching when she was 11.

    “Well... we had spaghetti that night.”

    “And?”

    “Well, we watched like anyone else. And I remember the spaghetti.”
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    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    The surprise on the moon landing was a moment when the camera was accidentally pointed at the sun and the picture died . For me it was a good year, I was also 22 atthe time.
    Ahh...that was Apollo 12.

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    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    I hesitated to post because while i remember watching on tv , and i know I was in Bristol UK, i cannot remember whose tv it was. Earlier that year I watched Concorde take off from Filton and I remember that and the waiting and the surprise. Which was that Trubshaw took off on the first run. The surprise on the moon landing was a moment when the camera was accidentally pointed at the sun and the picture died . For me it was a good year, I was also 22 atthe time.
    That event occurred during A12 when Alan Bean accidently pointed the camera at the sun burning out a portion of the video pickup tube.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo_TV_camera

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    Quote Originally Posted by schlaugh View Post
    Ahh...that was Apollo 12.
    Thank you , i will adjust my implants.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

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    Things that bug me: When man first went to the moon, I was too young. Then we stopped. By the time we go again, I'll be far too old, in fact I have been for at least 30 years.

    I vividly remember, when I was little, my mother telling me that sometime in my lifetime, not in hers, but in mine, man would go to the moon. It happened about 15 years later, and she survived it by 40 years. We really do live in the future.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

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    I was just between high school and college that summer of 1969. (As editor of my high school's newspaper, I got to attend an event with the Apollo VIII crew when they visited Chicago. I might have my article around here somewhere, but better that it's lost. On that paper, we were severely limited on space (as opposed to Space) so any evocative prose I tried got cut to the bone marrow by our editor/publisher/faculty advisor. (The Felician Nuns were very frugal with everything, and could also diagram sentences to remove superfluous things like adjectives and adverbs. But, I digress!)

    The original plan had the Walk on the Moon taking place well after midnight Central Time. I was looking forward to setting the alarm clock and getting up to watch in the dead of night. As I recall, Walter Cronkhite would be covering the events with Arthur C. Clarke as guest commentator.

    However, they moved the event up into Prime Time. That was okay, though not quite so much fun.

    For years I had an audio tape of the radio announcer describing the event, taped off my transistor radio. Along the way, the cassette broke.

    I also took a picture of the Moon that night with my camera. However, itr looked as it did any other night, so I didn't keep track of it.
    Last edited by DonM435; 2019-Mar-24 at 03:49 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    Around the 40th Anniversary, I asked my Mom what she remembered of watching when she was 11.

    “Well... we had spaghetti that night.”

    “And?”

    “Well, we watched like anyone else. And I remember the spaghetti.”

    I was a few years younger, and my memory is sort of like that: I can picture certain things, but the key things I can be sure are memories from the time are things that happened at the house. I know we camped out in front of our big 25" color TV (I had special permission to stay - I wasn't required to go to bed as the hour grew late) and I can tell you some things about the room at the time, that we were living in Lincoln, Nebraska, and that after the landing, my mother and I walked out the front door to look at the Moon. I remember that it felt profound to recognize there were people up there for the first time since the worlds existed - a true historic moment.

    But I've rewatched so much in later years it's pretty much impossible for me to say, of the actual coverage, exactly what I watched at the time and what I watched in later years. So if you ask me exactly what I watched *that day and that night* I couldn't tell you. I know a saw a great deal of the landing at the time, but I missed on some of it too. I know we sometimes flipped the channel - the major networks each had a reporter that was a focus person for the space coverage, and one network reporter (don't recall name) seemed to do a bit better about explaining technical issues, but we also liked Cronkite. When I look back at old footage, I feel nostalgic, not just for the events, but also seeing some of those faces of reporters I haven't now seen for years or decades.

    I can't remember much from Apollo 10 or 12, mostly a memory of an event here or there, but little detailed memory. For Apollo 13 I remember we had moved to New Mexico, but there I mostly remember our teacher discussing it while fighting off tears as she talked. I was a bit naive - this was NASA, and they could (I thought at the time) do almost anything, so I didn't understand why she was worried, and I didn't try to follow it that carefully. For later missions, we were living in California. I remember interest for space missions in the house had dropped off, so I had to watch the launch on the backup B&W TV, and fiddle with the rabbit ears to get a fuzzy signal. Oh, and there was a UHF channel that was doing coverage, but I didn't have a spare UHF antenna, so I made one using aluminum foil. Not the best antenna in the world. Compare that to today where you just access a HD live stream on a tablet you can carry with you.

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    Glued - absolutely glued to the Telly the whole mission. I was only sixteen, but I had several friends who worked on the Apollo V program - I still have an Apollo hat, one that I was wearing today. My grandfather died in May or June of 1969, shortly after I took him to the US transcontinental railroad centennial celebration.

    It was our first color TV - my dad used his entire inheritance to buy it, so it was modestly disappointing that they did not capture the live moment in colour.

    The landing took a few seconds longer than expected - that was tense - but the rest of the event betrayed the utter complexity.

    FWIW, I met both Armstrong and Aldrin later in life - Neal Armstrong at my wife's graduation. She stole a hug from him, leaning in and whispering in his ear, "I couldn't walk away from you without this."

    I was on a cruise with Buzz Aldrin in 1998. He gave a short lecture on spaceflight. Aldrin told us that he was not happy ("I was pissed off") that President Nixon had relegated him to second fiddle - just because Nixon liked the ring of Armstrong's name . He told us that "You may have noticed that I paused, just as I stepped off of the the ladder. Neal may have been the first man to step on the moon, but by damn, I was going to be first man to **** on it."
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry View Post

    ...
    I was on a cruise with Buzz Aldrin in 1998. He gave a short lecture on spaceflight. Aldrin told us that he was not happy ("I was pissed off") that President Nixon had relegated him to second fiddle - just because Nixon liked the ring of Armstrong's name . He told us that "You may have noticed that I paused, just as I stepped off of the the ladder. Neal may have been the first man to step on the moon, but by damn, I was going to be first man to **** on it."
    I had thought that Aldrin was to be first out, based upon alphabetical order, but late in the game someone decided that -- because NASA was a civilian organization -- the civilian (Armstrong) should get the honor over the military guy (Aldrin).

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    Not to digress but the "people in the room" say the decision was reached by key NASA officials, not Nixon (although I'm sure Aldrin has his opinion):

    According to Chris Kraft, a March 1969 meeting among Slayton, George Low, Bob Gilruth, and Kraft determined that Armstrong would be the first person on the Moon, in part because NASA management saw him as a person who did not have a large ego. A press conference on April 14, 1969, gave the design of the LM cabin as the reason for Armstrong's being first; the hatch opened inwards and to the right, making it difficult for the lunar module pilot, on the right-hand side, to exit first. [But] At the time of their meeting, the four men did not know about the hatch consideration. The first knowledge of the meeting outside the small group came when Kraft wrote his book.[101][102] Methods of circumventing this difficulty existed, but it is not known if these were considered at the time. Slayton added, "Secondly, just on a pure protocol basis, I figured the commander ought to be the first guy out ... I changed it as soon as I found they had the time line that showed that. Bob Gilruth approved my decision."[103]

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    Back to the OP:

    I'm pretty sure I went outside to look at the moon after the LEM landed 16:17 EDT (20:17 UTC) but before the EVA began. I recall seeing the moon from just outside the side entrance of my grandparent's home in Kentucky.

    Armstrong touched the surface at 22:56 EDT (02:56 July 21 UTC) and at that point, from my viewing location, the moon was only 12 degrees above the horizon in the Southwest and I don't recall it being that low when I looked.

    I also don't recall the buttoning up process and launch back to Columbia. The return launch was at 13:54. I'm sure I was awake but at that point probably not paying much attention and was fairly exhausted. See, my father (aged 46) had died early in the morning of July 20 from a major heart attack so my family and I were in a deeply depressed and grieving mood. But even with all of the angst I still watched the key bits of the mission.

    Something I noted at the time but had forgotten until Youtube came along was that the CBS News animation of the descent was out of kilter from the actual landing. The network showed the LEM on the surface about 45 seconds before the actual landing. Maybe due to Armstrong having to manually fly over the boulder field and extend the timeline.
    Last edited by schlaugh; 2019-Mar-24 at 05:55 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DonM435 View Post
    I had thought that Aldrin was to be first out, based upon alphabetical order, but late in the game someone decided that -- because NASA was a civilian organization -- the civilian (Armstrong) should get the honor over the military guy (Aldrin).
    I hadn't really thought about what was behind that decision. This article has some interesting takes on it, namely that the pro for Aldrin was the tradition that the pilot go out, as in the Gemini missions, not the commander (Armstrong). But, there seems to have been an egress issue that gave Armstrong the advantage...

    "The bottom line was that when the hatch was opened, the commander, Armstrong, had a clear path to exit, while the pilot was pinned in the rather cramped space of the module. By a sheer happenstance, it made more sense for Armstrong to
    exit first. Plus, as NASA's heads pointed out, Armstrong was actually the more senior member of the team anyway, having entered the program in 1962, while Aldrin came in 1963."


    I was 16, like Jerry, but I didn't know anyone with the Apollo program. [I did get to hear Ed White speak once.] It may be hard for today's generation to appreciate how much even more respect we had for astronauts back then. Many were risk-it-all fighter and test pilots who happened to be in a somewhat special class of pilots -- those that hadn't "augered in". The drama was intensified with the loss of the three astronauts in Apollo 1 (White/Grissom/Chaffee); having only four prior Apollo trips into space (two around the Moon); and the pressure to beat the Russians who had been beating us beginning with Sputnik buzzing over our heads (for a while). Then add the importance of having a major bright spot on the news separate from the Vietnam reports.

    I had every intent on seeing the landing that night and my buddies assured me we would be back in time. But the bone-headed beverage behavior we had in the corn field ran overtime and I got fed-up with them but elected not to leave them in their meanderings, so I walked down a very dark road guided by only the now-active crescent Moon. After about 1/2 mile there was a bend and I could see about another 1/2 mile or so a little light from a building. It was a trailer home, probably the farmers of the field, which we should not have been allowed to be in, but I had to see the landing. I knocked and as politely as I could, asked if I could join them as I was sure they were watching already. They graciously let me in and we all sat there quietly and watched history unfold. I closed one eye in hopes Neil would become just one spacesuit in motion, but to no avail. I don't recall if I stayed long enough to see Buzz come out or not. It may have been almost an hour for the roundtrip from the car and my "buddies?" were all worried about me, especially since I had the car keys. [Ernie and Steve, if you're reading this, I'm still a little ticked! ]

    I give this account because it touches on the great spirit of the night -- the world let the other issues slide and we, for a brief moment, were all a special kind of larger family. Any other moment in history and I would had been staring at one (ok three) shotguns at their door.
    Last edited by George; 2019-Mar-24 at 10:36 PM. Reason: grammar
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    I was 10 years old. 1969 was a very good year for me, men landing on the Moon and the Mets won the World Series. We watched on TV; I'm pretty sure we watched CBS and Walter Cronkite. I remember I kept the New York Times from the following day, but it disappeared some time over the many years.
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    Quote Originally Posted by George View Post
    I saw three astronauts take that first step.]
    Don't say that near a hoax believer - they will say the LM only held 2 people so the third astronaut must have been the film director.... 😉

    I actually remember the splashdown more than the lunar landing - I was only 6 at the time and I would have been at school when the walk took place. However I very vividly remember seeing the three big chutes on TV as the CM splashed back down. However, it's very possible that was actually one of the later missions, not A11.

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    I was 17 at the time and living in Australia. I remember driving home from an all-night observing session listening to it on the radio.

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    I'm not sure this is exactly an anniversary celebration event, but I thought it relevant to the thread.

    Laboratory Equipment magazine

    Nine containers with moon rocks and samples of the lunar vacuum itself were collected by human hands during three of the Apollo missions in 1971 and 1972.

    Three of them have been sealed in the original containers—until they were opened as scheduled last week at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

    The cosmochemists at the national laboratory are hoping transitory traces down to solar-wind volatiles may still have been preserved in the half-century since they were collected in the moon’s regolith.

    “The advance in analytical capability over the past 60 years will allow modern investigators to make measurements that were impossible during the Apollo missions,” said Lars Borg, the leader of the Lawrence Livermore team. “By studying these untouched samples, we’ll gain a new understanding of the moon, its origins and geologic evolutions.”
    The researchers will start by X-ray scanning the containers, and then extracting the vacuum and trace gases in the head and pore spaces, according to the scientists.

    The grains of the regolith could be a perfect trap for volatile elements on the surface of the moon. The opening of the three new boxes is part of the Apollo Next Generation Sample Analysis (ANGSA), which aims to use the latest technology to review the old samples. The personnel come from Lawrence Livermore, as well as the University of New Mexico.

    Among the scientific team: Harrison Schmidt, the astronaut who collected samples himself aboard Apollo 17.

    The main analyses include: noble gas measurements; major and trace element identification; and chronology of the largest clasts. The isotopes of the noble gases could show how they are modified by meteorite impacts. The source of hydrogen in the regolith’s minerals could provide more geologic clues to the moon’s structure. And the meteorites that have struck the moon could provide their own kind of chemical time capsule.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    I'm not sure this is exactly an anniversary celebration event, but I thought it relevant to the thread.

    Laboratory Equipment magazine
    Good to hear and I hope they get information previously unknown.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ozprof View Post
    I was 17 at the time and living in Australia. I remember driving home from an all-night observing session listening to it on the radio.
    That had to be an odd hour time frame, so were many glued to their tv sets, like no other event prior to that?
    We know time flies, we just can't see its wings.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    I'm not sure this is exactly an anniversary celebration event, but I thought it relevant to the thread.

    Laboratory Equipment magazine
    That's cool! I hope we see a lot more activity as well.

    There is a new book, "American Moonshot - John F. Kennedy and the Great Space Race" that honors those days. It was released today, I think.
    We know time flies, we just can't see its wings.

  25. 2019-Apr-03, 10:31 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by George View Post
    That had to be an odd hour time frame, so were many glued to their tv sets, like no other event prior to that?
    I read recently that in New Zealand, listening on the radio was the only option because none of the country's TV stations had the proper tech for a live satellite hook-up yet. So they had to wait to get the footage on tape flown in from Australia.
    The greatest journey of all time, for all to see
    Every mission makes our dreams reality
    And our destiny begins with you and me
    Through all space and time, the achievement of mankind
    As we sail the sea of discovery, on heroes’ wings we fly!

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    Quote Originally Posted by George View Post
    That had to be an odd hour time frame, so were many glued to their tv sets, like no other event prior to that?
    i suspect OzProf was talking about the landing, which occurred at 6:18am Australian Eastern Time (which ties in with driving home after an all-nighter).

    The moonwalk occurred around 12:35pm AET and was certainly viewed by many people on TV here. My older sisters often talk about their classes being rounded up into the school hall to watch on a TV set up on the stage.

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    I was only 3 at the time. But I do remember CBS, and the little desk models I coveted at the time.

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    That's one small step for Nabisco, one giant leap for mankind....

    collectspace.com

    May 14, 2019 — Nabisco is launching a tasty tribute to the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing.

    The snack company on Tuesday (May 14) revealed its upcoming release of Oreo Marshmallow Moon cookies. The new limited edition flavor is set to land on store shelves in mid-June, just in time to celebrate the Apollo 11 mission that delivered the first humans to the surface of the moon on July 20, 1969.

    Marshmallow Moon flavored Oreos "feature three fun, moon landing designs on the cookie with delicious purple marshmallow creme inside," a spokesperson wrote in an email to collectSPACE. "Plus, the cookies will come in glow in the dark packaging with anniversary sticker sets on pack."
    I'm waiting for posts that this is a cookie hoax.
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    Can you still buy **** Tang?
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Can you still buy **** Tang?
    Uh... you can buy Tang. I don’t know what **** Tang might be. Clearly the board software doesn’t like it.

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