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TechnologyThe heart-stopping moments before Apollo 11 landed on the moon as the world watched

14:25  16 july  2019
14:25  16 july  2019 Source:   abcnews.go.com

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The Apollo 11 Lunar Module (LM) "Eagle" was the first crewed vehicle to land on the Moon . Critical minutes passed and then Armstrong could be heard saying In this file photo taken on July 20, 1969 astronaut Buzz Aldrin, lunar module pilot, walks on the surface of the moon during the Apollo 11

Apollo 11 was the spaceflight that first landed humans on the Moon . Commander Neil Armstrong and lunar module pilot Buzz Aldrin, both American, landed the Apollo Lunar Module Eagle on July 20

The heart-stopping moments before Apollo 11 landed on the moon as the world watched© NASA/AFP/Getty Images In this file photo taken on July 20, 1969 astronaut Buzz Aldrin, lunar module pilot, walks on the surface of the moon during the Apollo 11 extravehicular activity (EVA).

Fifty years ago this week, the Apollo 11 astronauts -- Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins -- suited up as America waited with bated breath: would the trio be the first Americans to set foot on the moon?

It was a grand, new goal that was first set by President John F. Kennedy.

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NASA legends remember the nerve-wracking moments before Apollo 11 landing . No wonder: the whole world was watching . American pride was also on the line, to achieve a goal set by President John F. Kennedy eight years earlier, to land a man on the moon and return him safely to the Earth.

The Apollo 11 lunar landing was a global event. Please share your thoughts with us regarding this remarkable event. I remember my grammar school teacher telling me about her experience on the day Neil Armstrong landed on the moon . She had such a sense of patriotism when telling our class

"I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal before this decade is out of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the Earth," he said in May 1961.

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Astronauts who were preparing for the U.S. first lunar mission followed a complex training program. There were simulations. They walked in their spacesuits. They completed tests in the water.

Americans counted the days -- with so many questions about the mission -- as did NASA. And then it was time.

Watch the full film "Apollo: Mission to the Moon" at NatGeoTV.com

On July 16, 1969, families across the U.S. gathered in their living rooms -- and hundreds of millions around the world -- watched as the Apollo 11 lifted off into space.

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A short retrospective about the Apollo 11 mission and what its accomplishments have taught us about the Moon and space exploration in general. In July 1969 the world watched as NASA launched three men on a trip to land on the Moon . The mission was called Apollo 11 .

Apollo 11 really landed on the Moon —and here’s how you can be sure (sorry, conspiracy nuts). Apollo 8 represented a furious rejuggling of the NASA flight schedule to accommodate the lack of a So put aside for a moment the pure ridiculousness of a Moon landing conspiracy that somehow

After traveling 240,000 miles in 76 hours, Apollo 11 entered in a lunar orbit. The next day, the lunar module Eagle, with Armstrong and Aldrin inside, separated from the command module where Collins remained.

Hours later, the Eagle began its descent to the moon. But then, there was an alarm.

"12-02. Standby," Mission Control could be heard saying.

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Mission Control at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston housed the engineers and flight directors who worked tirelessly to ensure Apollo 11's mission was a success.

A "12-02" alarm meant that the lunar module's computer was overloaded. If the problem could not be corrected, the landing would need to be aborted.

"Give us a reading on the 12-02 program alarm," Armstrong could be heard saying.

(MORE: 50 years later: Apollo 11 flight director returns to restored 'Houston')

The control room responded with silence.

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"The whole world stopped to watch what was taking place," space historian Roger Launius, assistant director of collections and curatorial affairs at the Smithsonian's National Air and A giant leap. For centuries before Apollo 11 landed on the moon , the idea of going there stirred people's imaginations.

Apollo 11 was the first spaceflight that landed humans on the Moon . Mission commander Neil Armstrong and pilot Buzz Aldrin landed the lunar module Eagle on

They would continue with the mission.

Armstrong flew the lunar module manually, evading boulders in their planned landing location. With the fuel running critically low, Apollo flight director Gene Kranz, back in Mission Control, gave a 60-seconds-to-abort warning.

The heart-stopping moments before Apollo 11 landed on the moon as the world watched© NASA The Apollo 11 Lunar Module (LM) "Eagle" was the first crewed vehicle to land on the Moon.

Critical minutes passed and then Armstrong could be heard saying: "The Eagle has landed."

(MORE: 50 years later: 'One Giant Leap' author on the lasting impact of Apollo 11's mission to the moon)

"Roger, Tranquility. We copy you on the ground. You've got a bunch of guys about to turn blue. We're breathing again. Thanks a lot," Mission Control could be heard responding.

"Thank you," Aldrin said.

Then, there was the sound of applause in Apollo Mission Control in Houston as some wiped away tears.

Armstrong bounded across the moon's surface on July 20, 1969. From the moon, he said those famous words: "That's one small step for man. One giant leap for mankind."

Nineteen minutes later, it was Aldrin’s turn to take his first steps.

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50 Facts About the Apollo 11 Moon Landing for Its 50th Anniversary. 2. Apollo 11 ’s goal was simply to arrive on the Moon , then return to Earth. When it came to the primary objective of "A month before the launch of Apollo 11 , we decided we were confident enough we could try and attempt on a

READ MORE: Apollo 11 Moon Landing Timeline: From Liftoff to Splashdown. As the dust settled on the moon ’s Sea of Tranquility after the landing engine of the Apollo 11 Lunar Module shut From the moment astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin set foot on the lunar surface on July 21, 1969

"Beautiful view!" he said.

President Richard Nixon spoke to Aldrin and Armstrong while they were in space, telling them: "I just can't tell you how proud we all are."

Yet, back in Apollo Mission Control in Houston, after the cheering and the tears, they knew they had a lot of work still left to do as they guided the men back home.

The heart-stopping moments before Apollo 11 landed on the moon as the world watched© ABC News David Muir traveled to Apollo Mission Control in Houston to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the U.S. landing on the moon.

NASA's Chris Kraft, who helped build Apollo, dies 50 years after moon landing.
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