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Tagged with “moon” (31)

  1. Astronomer Andrew Fraknoi: 50 Years Since Our First Step | Commonwealth Club

    What Do We Know About the Moon?

    July 20, 2019 is the 50th anniversary of humanity’s first steps on the surface of the moon. In that time, the Apollo missions, a fleet of robotic probes and observations from Earth have taught us a lot about Earth’s surprising satellite. In this nontechnical talk, Andrew Fraknoi, who is sometimes called the Bay Area’s public astronomer, will look at the past, present and future of the moon, including its violent origins, the mystery of the frozen water we have found at its poles and its long-term future as it moves farther and farther away from us. Illustrated with beautiful images taken from orbit and on the surface, his talk will make the moon come alive as an eerie world next door, as a changing object in our skies, and as a possible future destination for humanity and its ambitions. Come find out how the achievements of the Apollo program fit into the bigger picture of our involvement with our only natural satellite.

    Fraknoi recently retired as the chair of the astronomy department at Foothill College and now teaches noncredit astronomy courses for seniors at the Fromm Institute at the University of San Francisco and the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at San Francisco State. He also served as the executive director of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific for 14 years and was named the California professor of the year in 2007. Fraknoi appears regularly on local and national radio, explaining astronomical developments in everyday language. The International Astronomical Union has named Asteroid 4859 after Fraknoi in honor of his contributions to the public understanding of science.

    https://www.commonwealthclub.org/events/archive/podcast/astronomer-andrew-fraknoi-50-years-our-first-step

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  2. 13 Minutes To The Moon Ep.06 Saving 1968

    War, riots, assassinations: “the year that shattered America”. And then Nasa took the biggest risk in its history. There was the Vietnam War and the murders of Martin Luther King and Robert F Kennedy but with Apollo 8, astronauts went further from Earth than anyone had gone before and changed the way we look at our home forever.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/w3csz4dp

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  3. ‘One Giant Leap’ Explores The Herculean Effort Behind The 1969 Moon Landing

    In 1961, when President John F. Kennedy announced a goal of "landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth" before the end of the decade, the mission seemed all but impossible.

    "[The U.S.] didn’t have a spaceship that could fly to the moon," journalist Charles Fishman notes. "We didn’t have a rocket that could launch to the moon. We didn’t have a computer small enough or powerful enough to do the navigation necessary to get people to the moon. We didn’t have space food."

    There was even some disagreement about whether human beings would be able to think in zero gravity.

    Nevertheless, the race to the moon was on — especially after the Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin became the first human to orbit Earth, on April 12, 1961. Fishman’s new book, One Giant Leap, tells the story of the ordinary people who mobilized behind the Apollo program to pull off the most extraordinary human achievement: the July 20, 1969, moon landing.

    Fishman notes that 410,000 men and women at some 20,000 different companies contributed to the effort. They designed, built and tested the spacecraft and equipment the astronauts used — often working by hand.

    "It was an enormous undertaking," he says. "It’s 10 times the effort to build the Panama Canal. Three times the size of the Manhattan Project. … Apollo was the biggest nonmilitary effort in the history of human civilization."

    https://www.npr.org/2019/06/12/731660780/one-giant-leap-explores-the-herculean-effort-behind-the-1969-moon-landing

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