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Posts Tagged ‘Apollo 50th Anniversary’

09/27/2019 – Ephemeris – Apollo 50th anniversary talk tonight in Thompsonville

September 27, 2019 Comments off

Ephemeris for Friday, September 27th. Today the Sun will be up for 11 hours and 55 minutes, setting at 7:31, and it will rise tomorrow at 7:36. The Moon, 1 day before new, will rise at 7:09 tomorrow morning.

Tonight to commemorate the 50th anniversary the Apollo 11 landing on the Moon, I will present the illustrated talk Apollo and the Race to the Moon at 7 p.m. at the Betsie Valley District Library in Thompsonville. Afterwards, if it’s clear, members of the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society will host a star party featuring Saturn and Jupiter and some of the brighter deep sky objects. In the talk I’ll explore the Apollo 11 mission, the engineers, astronauts and all the crewed and robotic missions that paved the way for the successful lunar landings. I’ll also look at the Soviet space program their triumphs, plans, and ultimate failure to beat the Americans to the Moon.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Apollo and the Race to the Moon Title

Apollo and the Race to the Moon Title slide

09/16/2019 – Ephemeris Extra – I’ll be giving my presentation “Apollo and the Moon Race” tonight

September 16, 2019 Comments off

I’ll be giving my illustrated talk Apollo and the Moon Race tonight at 7 p.m. at the Traverse Area District Library on Woodmere Avenue in Traverse City.  The 1960s were a heady time with the space race between the US and the USSR in achieving space firsts.  I will look at the competition, and the incremental steps that had to be made to finally send astronauts to the surface of the Moon on July 20th 1969.

If you miss this presentation, there will be another on Friday September 27, at 7 p.m. at the Betsie Valley District Library in Thompsonville.

Both events will have viewing of the skies with the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society including Jupiter and Saturn afterward if it’s clear.

 

 

08/15/2019 – Ephemeris – Looking back at Apollo 12

August 15, 2019 Comments off

Sorry for the late post.  I had a short hospital stay due to something that happened to me early Wednesday.

Ephemeris for Thursday, August 15th. Today the Sun will be up for 14 hours and 3 minutes, setting at 8:48, and it will rise tomorrow at 6:46. The Moon, at full today, will rise at 9:17 this evening.

Apollo 11 wasn’t the only moon landing mission in 1969. Four months after Apollo 11 took off Apollo 12 lifted off into ominous skies on November 14th. The rocket was struck by lightning shortly after takeoff, and popped the circuit breakers in the command module, but didn’t affect the computers controlling the Saturn V. The astronauts were able to reset everything in time for TLI, Trans Lunar Injection. They landed as intended some 600 feet from the Surveyor 3 lander spacecraft sent to the Moon 2 and a half years earlier. They cut off the spacecraft camera to return to the Earth. The improved color TV camera they brought with them was damaged when it was inadvertently pointed to the Sun while setting it up.

The times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

The crew of Apollo 12 left to right: Pete Conrad, Richard Gordon, and Alan Bean. Credit: NASA.

Pete Conrad visiting Surveyor 3. Credit NASA/Alan Bean.