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Putting a Man on the Moon

1396 words (6 pages) Essay in History

18/05/20 History Reference this

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Putting a Man on the Moon

Did we land on the moon? This has been a greatly debated topic for some years.  When researching this many question came to mind. Like how Did we get to moon, who went to moon, what were the major obstacles that needed to be overcome and Did this really happen? These are the real questions that needed to be answered. As you read this essay the answer for those question will be answered.  

What the eye does not see, the heart does not regret ‘‘A lot happens that we are not telling you about.’’ —Opening lines of Apollo software source code [1]

 Walking on the moon was one the greats achievements in mankind. From the technology, Space program, dates and events, and the conspiracy that came from it. When doing research for this essay many questions came to mind. The first one was How did we get there?  In the book, Digital Apollo: Human and Machine, David Mindell speaks about “man-machine” this system combined the power of a computer and its software with the reliability and judgment of a human pilot.

Without this element the program would have never gotten off the ground. Human and machine: their relationship is not a new story. Indeed, it is one of the great narratives of the industrial world, from the mythical John Henry, who won a race with a steam drill at the cost of his life, to Charles Lindbergh, who used the word ‘‘we’’ to describe his partnership with his aircraft [2]

  Human skill and judgment would be needed to for spaceflight. With X-15, rocket plane this could be done. The Space program started with this. In 1961 Alan Shepard became the first American to fly in space. He did by flying atop a Redstone ballistic missile. From here missiles superseded aircraft to deliver man into space. The space program took off in the 60’s. Project Mercury (six manned flights) and its successor Gemini (ten manned flights). These two programs married the ideas of a manned flight and a computer to help.

 The evidence that has been provided shows that technology had to come along before we could send a man to the moon. As each flight was taken new things were discovered about the machine and the pilot. Mankind as always had the drive to go to the moon but had to have a way to carry them.  Without this first key part of the space program, man would have never gotten off the ground nor walked on the moon. 

  The second main point of the essay would be Interpreting the moon landing. Roger D. Launius talks about this in his article, he Talks about 5 major areas. Policy History and Analysis, Apollo Technology, Apollo missions and the cult of the astronaut, Exploring lunar science, and Apollo as American Culture. Without understanding or talking about these 5 areas, one cannot start to understand why we landed on the moon. A study was done by a man named John M. Logsdons, talks about celebrating the use of federal power for public good [3].

 In 1962 President John F. Kennedy stated we would be put a man on the moon by the end of the 1960’s. The decision was reasonable and forward-looking and led to good actions on the part of the nation. Astronauts were held to a different standard than everyone else. From there family life to their training. Astronauts were asked to compartmentalize their work and family life’s. The work that was needed from each astronaut was important to the program. Astronauts would be held as Hero once they landed on the moon. Without each one of this, the men and the program would have not been as successful. These key elements being separated but together make up and support the idea of going to the moon.  

 It also important to talk about dates that took place throughout the course of the Space program. Each of one this date holds an important detail that will push the program to what it became.  We will break down each date and talk about them in detail. Events in the Apollo program bench mark the progression of the space program.  Understanding the dates and the events that correspond, will help with supporting that the United States went to moon.  

 October 4th, 1957 was day that started the space race off. Soviet Union, Russia, launched Sputnik into space. Beside a satellite be launched into space, it brought the fear of weapons be launched from space. January 31st, 1958 Explorer 1 was launched into space by the United States. October 1st, 1958 NASA announces a plan to send a man into space. April 12th, 1961 Soviet Union sent Yuri Gagarin into space first. May 5th, 1961 Astronaut Alan B Shepard was the first American to travel into space.

February 3rd, 1966 Uncrewed Soviet spacecraft is the first craft to land on the moon. June 2, 1966 United States lands a Uncrewed spacecraft on the moon. January 27th, 1967 Three us astronauts Grissom, White, and Chaffee are killed during a test for Apollo 1. December 24th, 1968 Apollo 8 is the first Spacecraft to orbit the moon. July 20th, 1969 Apollo 11 lands on the moon with the first us astronauts. May 14th, 1972 Apollo 17 is the last Apollo spacecraft to land men on the moon. Understanding these dates is important to the race to land on the moon. 

Conspiracy theories that have come from the moon landing have been around since man landed and walked. “If Hollywood can fake perfectly believable dinosaurs, Space aliens, and fantasy planets, why not a visit to the moon”[4]. With $30 billion dollars and the power of the government, the people would believe anything. The first conspiracy that will be addressing is “Did we film it in the desert of Nevada”. There is a lot of question that come mind when question comes up. Like what happened to the sun? Gravity would be completely different?

Another argument is lighting is off, the flag moves, and there is not burn marks from the rockets. There is evidence that states that the flag dose not move on its own. It moves from when Neil Armstrong places in the moon. The burn marks are there, the reason that can’t be seen is due to low light. The lighting being off, is when the landing arms have two shadows. “Allegations of multiple shadows from multiple lights are red herrings. You can duplicate the Apollo shadows by taking pictures of select foreground and background objects on a sunny day with a $10 camera. The shadows are always parallel but converge toward a point on the horizon as seen in wide-angle lenses.”[5]

The most important parts of the essay we talked about was the technology and the dates for the space race. The technology showed what was needed to take man to moon and relationship between man and machine. The training each astronaut had to go through to pilot the spacecrafts played a big part in getting there. The dates laid out the important events that happen. Each one of these events leads to the greatest achievement done my mankind and that was landing a man on the moon. The great technology, the space program, dates and events, and the conspiracy of the moon landing gave the American people great pride and a feeling of accomplishment.

Works Cited

  • Launius, Roger D. “Interpreting the moon landing: Project Apollo and the Historians.” History & Technology, Jan. 2006, pp. 225-255
  • Mindell, David A. “Human and Machine in the race to the moon.” Digital Apollo: Human and Machine in Spaceflight, Stone Serif and Stone Sans, 2008, p. 2
  • Mindell, David A. “Programs and People” Digital Apollo: Human and Machine in    Spaceflight, Stone Serif and Stone Sans, 2008, p 1
  • Villard, Ray. “Did NASA fake the moon landing?” Astronomy, Mar. 2004, pp. 48-53
  • Villard, Ray. “Did NASA fake the moon landing?” Astronomy, Mar. 2004, pp. 48-53
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