On July 20th, 1969, at 10:56 p.m. ET, Nasa Astronaut Neil Armstrong stepped his left foot on the Lunar Surface and said, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” This was the moment that humanity attained another level of space exploration. Neil Astronaut was shortly followed by NASA Astronaut Buzz Aldrin, who became the second human to step his foot on the lunar surface. But who was the first man to walk on the moon? What inspired Neil Astronaut to take this bold step for humanity? Why did NASA consider sending humans to the moon? What did we learn from the first moon landing mission? Continue reading to find out more.
Neil Armstrong Biography
Neil Armstrong was one of the astronauts that considered taking a bold step for humanity in 1969. But his historic accomplishments can be traced back to when Neil Armstrong was born. When was Neil Armstrong born? On August 5th, 1930, Neil Armstrong was born in Wapakoneta, Ohio. His Father, Stephen Koenig Armstrong, wanted the best for his son.
When Neil Armstrong was only two years old, his dad attended the Cleveland Air Races. At this time, Stephen began to notice his son’s passion for flying. When Armstrong was about five or six years old, he participated in his first airplane flight when his father took him on a ride aboard Ford Trimotor in Warren, Ohio. This first flight gave the young Neil a fascinating experience of flying.
At that time, Armstrong’s dad worked as an auditor for the Ohio state government. His job made his family relocate around the state, living in about 16 towns within 14 years. In 1944, Armstrong’s family made the last move and returned to Wapakoneta. Upon their return, Armstrong joined the Blume High School and attended his flying lessons at the Wapakoneta airfield.
Where did Neil Armstrong go to college?
After putting much effort into his flying lessons, Neil Armstrong obtained his student flight certificate on his 16th birthday. In 1947, when Armstrong was 17, he enrolled at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, to study aeronautical engineering. Despite being opportune to attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Neil Astronauts still decided to Attend Purdue University because of his passion for flying.
On January 26, 1949, Armstrong received his call-up letter from the Nava, which he later passed the requirements and became a midshipman at Naval Air Station Pensacola in Florida on February 24, 1949. Armstrong later continued his flight training using a North American SNJ in September 1949. However, Armstrong took his career to the next level at the beginning of the next decade.
On March 2nd, 1950, Armstrong accomplished his first aircraft carrier landing using the USS Cabot. This accomplishment qualified Armstrong to become a fully Naval Aviator in August 1950. On November 27, 1950, Armstrong was allowed to be part of an all-jet squadron. This made the become the youngest officer to be assigned such a role.
After he made his first jet carrier landing using the USS Essex, he was promoted on June 5, 1950. Between 1951 and 1952, Armstrong worked actively with the Nava until he was released from duty on August 23, 1952. Armstrong applied to join National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) in early 1955. He was later accepted on July 11, 1955, after completing his first test flight in March 1955. As a test pilot, Neil Armstrong accomplished several flights, including flying on a rocket-powered aircraft on August 15, 1957.
When did Neil Armstrong join NASA?
Neil Armstrong officially joined National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) in 1955, which later collapsed into the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) on 29 July 1958. During this period, Armstrong was still working as a flight pilot under NACA. So, he became an employee of NASA upon absorbing NACA.
As NASA began to see the need for astronauts to participate in Project Gemini, the agency opened its door to welcome the second group of astronauts in April 1962. Neil Armstrong learned about this opportunity and decided to take advantage of it. He later applied to work as a NASA astronaut in June 1962. His application was later accepted in September 1962. He was selected as the first civilian astronaut by the space agency.
On February 8, 1965, Neil Armstrong and Elliot See were selected as the backup crew for the Gemini 5 project. However, the Prime crewmates Gordon Cooper and Pete Conrad later commenced on the mission alone in August 1965. The mission was a massive success as Copper and Conrad performed Phantom rendezvous and conducted the maneuver without any specific target.
Neil Armstrong’s first space mission
Neil Armstrong was later selected as the flight commander in Gemini 8 space mission. On March 16, 1966, Gemini 8 was launched into space carrying Neil Armstrong and David Scott to spend 75 hours in space and complete about 55 orbits around the earth. The complex mission was planned whereby a rendezvous carrying the crew would dock with an uncrewed space vehicle in orbit.
This targeted uncrewed vehicle was named Agena. Hence, nearly two hours after Agena was launched, the Titan II rocket carried Armstrong and Scott. When they arrived in orbit, they pursued the Agena. They later caught up with the uncrewed vehicle and docked it successfully.
Armstrong also served as backup commander for Gemini 11 space program in September 1966 before commencing with the Apollo space program. On November 20, 1967, the crew was officially assigned numerous tasks for the success of the Apollo space program.
The journey to the Moon
NASA put a lot of effort into preparing the Saturn V rocket and the lander vehicle for the smooth ride to the moon. The space agency selected Astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collin for the Apollo 11 space mission to the moon. On July 16, 1969, at 13:32:00 UTC (09:32:00 EDT local time, the Saturn V rocket was launched into space from Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center, carrying three astronauts on board.
The goal of the Apollo 11 mission was to land the astronauts on the moon safely. Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin were meant to land on the lunar surface aboard Lunar Module Eagle. At the same time, Michael Collin will remain on the Columbia Apollo Command Module to receive the astronauts after completing their EVA on the lunar surface.
As Armstrong and Aldrin were heading towards the lunar surface, Armstrong realized that they were moving towards an unsafe landing site. He manually took control of the landing module to avoid any disaster and headed for a safer region. This change of plan made the mission control on earth notice that the Lunar Module Eagle was running out of fuel.
However, Armstrong safely landed the module about 40 seconds before the module ran out of fuel. The safe touchdown occurred around 20:17:40 UTC on July 20, 1969. As soon as the Lunar Module safely landed on the lunar surface, Armstrong turned off the engine and notified the mission control about the successful milestone they had reached. You are about to discover who was the first man to walk on the moon.
Who was the first man to walk on the moon?
Since Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin successfully reached the lunar surface, you may be wondering who was the first man to walk on the moon. After the crew successfully landed on the moon, the Lunar Module Eagle was depressurized, and the hatch opened, setting out a ladder for the crew to exit the module.
When did Neil Armstrong land on the moon?
Armstrong climbed the ladder and set his left boot on the lunar surface at exactly 02:56 UTC on July 21, 1969. Upon this accomplishment, Armstrong said, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” As soon as Armstrong said these powerful words, the Voice of America, BBC, and other popular stations globally rebroadcasted the live event.
It was estimated that about 530 million people viewed the moon landing mission globally. This was about 20 percent of the world’s population of nearly 3.6 billion people in 1969.
Who Was the Second Man on the Moon?
About 19 minutes after Neil Armstrong landed on the moon, Buzz Aldrin emerged from the Lunar module to become the second human to set his foot on the moon. They commenced their tasks of exploring the lunar surface and studying how easily humans could explore the moon.
They planted the American Flag and communicated with President Richard Nixon, the United States president at that time. The crew conducted an EVA for about two and a half hours on the lunar surface before returning Lunar Module. The Eagle successfully made it to its rendezvous in the moon’s orbit and docked with Columbia. The three astronauts safely made their way back to earth and landed on the Pacific Ocean on July 24, at 17:54:00 UTC.
Neil Armstrong took the bold step by becoming the first human to land on the moon. Even though he died on August 25, 2012, his legacy will never be forgotten by future generations. When next, you think, who was the first man to walk on the moon? You should never forget the outstanding accomplishments of Astronaut Neil Armstrong. NASA is already working on commencing with its Artemis space program. This will enable the space agency to return humans to the moon.