20 FACTS YOU DIDN'T KNOW ABOUT APOLLO 11

(from (Popular Mechanics)

  1. Neil Armstrong's "one small step for man" wasn't small at all. He had to drop about 3 and a half feet from the foot of the Eagle's ladder to the surface.
  2. They could have been locked out. When lunar module pilot Buzz Aldrin joined Armstrong on the moon's surface, he had to make sure not to fully close the Eagle's hatch because the cabin would start re-pressurizing, making it difficult to re-enter.
  3. Between 1969 and 1972, astronauts left behind more than footprints mostly things to help save weight for takeoff: rovers and decent and ascent stages, astronaut boots, and a gold replica of an olive branch.
  4. The Command Module cabin was about as roomy as a large car.
  5. Pink Floyd jammed the tune Moonhead during the BBC's live television coverage of the moon landing.
  6. The American flag planted on the moon by the Apollo 11 crew was likely purchased at a Houston Sears store by a NASA secretary.
  7. The anniversary year, six teams of scientists will begin to examine one of three caches of lunar regolith from Apollo missions that have been stored at NASA's Johnson Space Center since 1972.
  8. The Apollo Guidance Computer weighed 70 pounds yet was less powerful than today's smartphones.
  9. In 2015, University of Oxford physicist David Robert Grimes, Ph.D., developed a mathematical model determining that if the U.S. moon landings were faked by the government, an estimated 411,000 people would have been in on the hoax and at least one person would have leaked the conspiracy within 3 years and 8 months.
  10. Apollo engineering influenced a lot of technologies and products, such as; freeze-dried backpacking meals, dust-buster cordless vacuums, Nike Air running shoes, anti-fog ski googles and studless winter tires.
  11. The first supper on the moon was the Last Supper. Shortly before stepping on the moon, Buzz Aldrin took the rite of Christian communion, consuming the sacraments of wine and bread that he brought on board.
  12. Eagle Scout Neil Armstrong earned 26 merit badges, (it take 21 badges to be an Eagle Scout) but not the Space Exploration merit badge. It wasn't created until 1965.
  13. An unbuilt vintage 1969 1/48 scale plastic model of the lunar module can be bought on eBay for about $50.
  14. The Saturn V rocket that launched Apollo 11 burned through 203,400 gallons of kerosene fuel and another 318,000 gallons of liquid oxygen to lift the spacecraft just 38 miles into the sky.
  15. If the Saturn V rocket had exploded, it would have created a fireball in excess of 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit.
  16. Upon returning to Earth, Apollo 11 astronauts were quarantined for two weeks in case they had been contaminated with dangerous pathogens.
  17. President Richard Nixon's speechwriter drafted a just-in-case address; July 18, 1969: In Event Of Moon Disaster.
  18. The mission was so dangerous, the astronauts couldn't get life insurance. So they each autographed hundreds of philatelic "covers," envelopes their friends had postmarked on July 20, 1969, which they knew their families could sell to collectors to fund their kids' college education if they did not return.
  19. Aldrin threw a Buzz uppercut. In, 2002, the former astronaut punched a documentary maker who poked him with a Bible and demanded he swear the moon landing wasn't staged.
  20. Sorry, hoax theorists: NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera took photos of the six American flags left on the moon. Five are standing. Apollo 11's was knocked down by takeoff thrust.

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