The apollo space program began in 1961 when president John F. Kennedy publicly stated that the country would have a man on the mood by the end of 1969. the program ran until 1975 and experienced much success during that time. nasa had launched two other programs that would put humans into space and onto the moon, but historians place those programs into the apollo program. the program was the first time more than one man would reach space in the same vehicle.
The first apollo mission featured a command/service module known as a csm and a lunar module known as an lm. the astronauts would ride on the cm from the earth where it would launch into orbit and then return on that same vehicle. the lm was attached to this original vehicle and would let the men touch down once in space.
In 1967 nasa announced that they would run seven different missions, each named after a letter in the alphabet. each mission would show what the program was capable of and allow the workers to move onto the next step. for example the first two missions were unmanned tests, while men would be added to the missions later and subjected to different speeds.
From 1961 to 1965 a series of unmanned missions took place that used the saturn i. some of these were known as apollo such as apollo 4, apollo 5 and apollo 6. on october 11, 1968 the first apollo mission took place with astronauts. three men on apollo 7 spent 11 days in space where they tested out the abilities of the vehicle as well as the men inside.
Apollo 11 would become the most famous of all the missions. the crew consisted of buzz aldrin as pilot, neil armstrong and michael collins. the cm launched from earth on july 16, 1969 and landed on the moon on july 20. it was the first time in history that man walked on the moon and was most known for armstrong’s words that he spoke as he walked across the moon’s surface.
The apollo program launched several more vehicles into space before turning into a testing series. these later missions brought back moon rocks and other artifacts that are still on display at museums across the country. the total cost of the program was between $20 and $25 billion, which contributed to its end. though it helped the us retain their dominance in space, the cost was far too high for it to continue.
Resources on the apollo program include:
- the apollo program: gives a complete history of the program and its applications.
- apollo: discusses each mission used in the program and gives each one its own history.
- apollo 11: provides scans of some of the documents relating to the program.
- project apollo: provides a history of the program and additional resources.
- project apollo mission overview: offers multiple sources of information relating to the program.
- the apollo program: gives a long history of the space program and how it changed america.
- exploring the moon: discusses all of the missions used in the program and how they were related.
- the apollo missions: focuses on each of the missions that were part of the program.
- program overview: covers topics such as the missions and the technical drawings used by the designers.
- the apollo program: focuses on the later missions and what took place on each one.
The apollo 11 program was something that held the country together, even as society was changing. ideas and people were in the midst of transitioning over into the hippie and free love lifestyle, but people still grouped together to watch armstrong take his steps on the moon. they gathered around television sets like they were security video cameras and watched every moment. It helped the country realize that there was something far greater and more important in the world.