July 20, 1969. On the screens of televisions connected by Mundovision with space, images of a shared dream that is becoming reality will arrive: the conquest of the Moon.
For the first moon landing in history, a place is chosen in the central-western part of the Sea of Tranquility. And it is in this lost selenite crater, where the LEM is found with its comical spider legs, from which the dialogue with the base of Houston, the radiochronic of the conquest of the Moon takes place.
The door has opened. Neil Armstrong he has descended only on the lunar soil, has left the first mark and has pronounced, when descending from the ladder, the historical phrase (prepared, of course): "It is a small step for a man, but a gigantic leap for all mankind."
Aldrin was the second astronaut to step on selenite soil. At one point in the broadcast he comments: "From here you can see a beautiful panorama. It is a bit similar to some deserts in the United States." The dialogue continues, of course, until the moment of getting back on board. More than fourteen hours have elapsed, all used to perform important experiments and collect samples, when the LEM Eagle, the eagle, returns to its nest, to the service module Columbia in which Michael Collins has been waiting.
The conquest of our natural satellite was the logical conclusion of a program initiated in May 1961, when the then president of the United States John Kennedy announced the country's decision to promote this project with all his might.
The technological stages that made possible the conquest of the Moon had been overcome even before 1961, and were covered by two programs: "Mercury" and "Gemini". Started in 1958, the "Mercury" project was a completed program and, in the context of the company "Apollo-Luna", represented the first step to make a space vehicle capable of taking a man to the selenite surface.
The second step, represented by the "Gemini" program, allowed to carry out a much more advanced vehicle, capable of transporting two men. During the 10 "Gemini" missions sent to space between March 1965 and November 1966, astronauts learned to carry out extra-vehicular activities, to perform "rendez-vous" maneuvers in orbit and to carry out limited scientific experiments.
The true proof that man could withstand the absence of gravity, without negative effects for a period sufficient to allow the Earth-Moon trip, arises from the mission "Gemini 7" that lasted fourteen days: from December 4 to 18 of 1,965.
The Apollo project continued to take astronauts to the Moon until it was abandoned, after Apollo 17, for economic reasons.
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