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Nasa to announce ‘exciting’ new discovery about the Moon made by Sofia flying telescope



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Nasa is to announce an “exciting” new discovery about the moon.

The space agency revealed few details of the discovery but said it “contributes to NASA’s efforts to learn about the Moon in support of deep space exploration.”

The discovery has come from the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, also known as Sofia, it said.

Sofia, the world’s largest airborne observatory, is a modified 747 that flies high in the atmosphere to provide its nearly nine foot telescope with a clear view of the universe and objects in our solar system.

Amazing NASA Space Images – In pictures

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Astronaut Buzz Aldrin walks on the lunar surface during the Apollo 11 mission in 1969

NASA

2/60

This 1969 photograph of the eclipse of the sun was taken with a 16mm motion picture camera from the Apollo 12 spacecraft during its trans-Earth journey home from the moon. The fascinating view was created when the Earth moved directly between the sun and the Apollo 12 spacecraft

NASA

3/60

Astronaut Bruce McCandless II photographed 320 ft from the Space Shuttle Challenger during the first untethered EVA, made possible by his nitrogen jet propelled backpack (Manned Manuevering Unit or MMU) in 1984

NASA

4/60

The brilliant tapestry of young stars flaring to life resemble a glittering fireworks display in the 25th anniversary NASA Hubble Space Telescope image

NASA

5/60

Space shuttle Atlantis blasts off from Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral, Florida in 2011. This lift off is the last in the 30-year-old shuttle program

Getty Images

6/60

The first teklevision image of Earth from a weather satellite taken by the TIROS-1 satellite in 1960

NASA

7/60

The Echo 2 satellite in 1960. Once the balloon was launched into orbit, a prerecorded message from President Dwight Eisenhower was transmitted from California and heard with clarity in New Jersey

NASA

8/60

The original seven Mercury astronauts and pioneers in human space exsploration pose in their silver spacesuits in 1961

NASA

9/60

President John F. Kennedy calls for a moon landing in 1961 durning Congress

NASA

10/60

Astronaut John Glenn climbs into his Friendship 7 space capsule in the Atlas rocket in 1962. Glenn was the first American to orbit the earth

NASA

11/60

A close-up view of an astronaut’s bootprint in the lunar soil, photographed with a 70mm lunar surface camera during the Apollo 11 extravehicular activity (EVA) on the moon in 1969

NASA

12/60

Man’s first landing on the Moon. Lunar Module, “Eagle,” touched down gently on the Sea of Tranquility on the east side of the Moon. Astronauts Edwin Aldrin and Neil Armstrong wre the first men to walk on the Moon in 1969

NASA

13/60

After an 8 month voyage to Mars, Mariner 4 makes the first flyby of the Mars (the red planet) in 1965 and became the first spacecraft to take close-up photographs of another planet

NASA

14/60

Astronaut Edward H. White II, pilot on the Gemini-Titan 4 spaceflight, is shown during his egress from the spacecraft. His face is covered by a shaded visor to protect him from the unfiltered rays of the sun. White became the first American astronaut to walk in space. He remained outside the spacecraft for 21 minutes during the third revolution of the Gemini-4 mission in 1965

NASA

15/60

The X-15 completed 199 flights to the edge of space from 1959-1968. Neil Armstrong was one of it’s budding young pilots

NASA

16/60

Earthrise over the moon from Apollo 8 in 1968

NASA

17/60

American astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin and Michael Collins lift off from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, in the mammoth-sized Saturn V rocket on their way to the moon during the Apollo 11 mission in 1969

18/60

Astronaut Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin, Jr. saluting the US flag on the surface of the Moon during the Apollo 11 lunar mission in 1969

NASA

19/60 Home

View of Moon limb with Earth on the horizon in 1969 during the Apollo 11 mission

NASA

20/60

Apollo XI astronauts Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Buzz Aldrin laugh with President Richard Nixon aboard the USS Hornet in 1969

Richard Nixon Foundation via Getty Images

21/60 Lunar mission

Astronaut John W. Young, commander of the Apollo 16 lunar landing mission, leaps from the lunar surface as he salutes the United States flag at the Descartes landing site during the first Apollo 16 extravehicular activity (EVA) in 1972

NASA

22/60

First image of Viking 1’s foot plantid on martian soil foot in 1976

NASA

23/60

The first ever long distance image of the Earth and Moon together. The image photograph was taken by Voyager 1 in 1977

NASA

24/60

A dramatic view of Jupiter’s Great Red Spot and its surroundings in 1979

NASA

25/60

The first space shuttle launch Columbia lifts off in 1981

NASA

26/60

Astronaut Sally Ride on the flight deck of the space shuttle Challenger in 1983. She became the first American woman in space

NASA

27/60

One of the most celebrated images taken by the Hubble called ‘Pillars of Creation’

NASA

28/60

Space shuttle Challenger destructs after lift off in 1973

NASA

29/60

NASA’s Extreme Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope aboard ESA’s SOHO spacecraft took this image of a huge, handle-shaped prominence in 1999. Prominences are huge clouds of relatively cool dense plasma suspended in the Sun’s hot, thin corona

NASA

30/60

Trailing a column of flame and smoke that dwarfs it, Space Shuttle Endeavour leaps into the clear blue Florida sky on mission STS-99 in 2000

31/60

Space Shuttle Atlantis clears the tower as it roars into space on mission STS-106 after a perfect on-time launch in 2000

NASA

32/60 2004

The deepest view of 10,000 galaxies taken by the Hubble Space Telescope called the Hubble Ultra Field Deep (2004)

NASA

33/60 2005

A new view of the Eagle Nebula, one of the two largest and sharpest images Hubble Space Telescope has ever taken (2005)

NASA

34/60

International Space Station pictured by the crew of Atlantis in 2008

NASA

35/60

The rim of Gale Crater is visible in the distance, through the dusty haze, in this view of NASA’s Curiosity rover of a sloping hillside on Mount Sharp

NASA

36/60

Taken on June 03, 2008 and released by NASA on June 4, 2008 shows US space shuttle Discovery Mission Specialist Michael Fossum being photographed by US Mission Specialist Ronald Garan (reflected in Fossum’s face shield) as they work outside The International Space Station during the first of three planned space walks.

AFP/Getty Images

37/60

In celebration of the International Year of Astronomy 2009, NASA’s Great Observatories — Hubble Space Telescope, Spitzer Space Telescope, and Chandra X-ray Observatory — have produced a matched trio of images of the central region of our Milky Way

NASA

38/60

A striking black and white image showing the detail of the planet Saturn

NASA

39/60

This majestic false-color image from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope shows ‘mountains’ where stars are born. These towering pillars of cool gas and dust are illuminated at their tips with light from warm embryonic stars

NASA

40/60

The space shuttle Atlantis is seen over the Bahamas in 2011 prior to a perfect docking with the International Space Station

NASA

41/60

Aurora Australis, seen from a point over the southeast Tasman Sea near southern New Zealand. in 2011

NASA

42/60

NASA astronaut Sunita Williams, Expedition 32 flight engineer, appears to touch the bright sun during the mission’s third session of extravehicular activity (EVA). During the six-hour, 28-minute spacewalk in 2012

NASA

43/60

Behold one of the more stunningly detailed images of the Earth yet created. This Blue Marble Earth montage, created from photographs taken by the VIIRS instrument in 2012 on board the Suomi NPP satellite, shows many stunning details of our home planet

NASA

44/60

Numerous recognizable features appear in this detailed view of London, photographed by an Expedition 10 crew member on the International Space Station (ISS). The most striking visual features are green open spaces such as Regent’s Park, Hyde Park and St. James’s Park east of Buckingham Palace

NASA

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International Space Station image of London at night

NASA

46/60

This image of Tropical Storm Anna taken from the International Space Station in 2015

NASA

47/60

Pluto’s haze layer and its blue colour, taken by the New Horizons Ralph/Multispectral Visible Imaging Camera (MVIC) in 2015

NASA

48/60

NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, dark, narrow streaks on the slopes of Hale Crater are inferred to be formed by seasonal flow of water on surface of present-day Mars. These dark features on the slopes are called “recurring slope lineae” or RSL

NASA

49/60

Earth observation taken during a night pass by the Expedition 49 crew aboard the International Space Station (ISS) in 2016

NASA

50/60

The moon rises in low Earth orbit by NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik from the International Space Station in 2017

NASA

51/60

Hurricane Harvey is pictured off the coast of Texas in 2017

NASA

52/60

The International Space Station continues its orbit around the Earth as Expedition 50 astronauts captured this night image of sparkling cities and a sliver of daylight framing the northern hemisphere in 2017

53/60

This composite image made from a series of 2018 photos shows a self-portrait of NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover in the Gale Crater

NASA

54/60

US. National Parks From Space. Mt Saint Helen’s looking spectacular from above

NASA

55/60

SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft as it lifts off on a Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida in 2018

NASA

56/60

NASA’s Juno spacecraft captures Jupiter’s southern hemisphere, as the spacecraft performed its 13th close flyby of Jupiter in 2018

NASA

57/60

The stunning iamge was shared on social media by astronaut Paolo Nespoli

NASA

58/60

The Bailey’s Beads effect is seen as the moon makes its final move over the sun during the total solar eclipse

NASA

59/60

The Moon is seen passing in front of the Sun during a solar eclipse from Ross Lake, Northern Cascades National Park, Washington

NASA

60/60

Swirling cloud belts and tumultuous vortices within Jupiter’s northern hemisphere picture taken by NASA’s Juno spacecraft as it performed it’s 13th flypast. Juno was about 9,600 miles (15,500 kilometers) from the planet’s cloud tops.

NASA

1/60

Astronaut Buzz Aldrin walks on the lunar surface during the Apollo 11 mission in 1969

NASA

2/60

This 1969 photograph of the eclipse of the sun was taken with a 16mm motion picture camera from the Apollo 12 spacecraft during its trans-Earth journey home from the moon. The fascinating view was created when the Earth moved directly between the sun and the Apollo 12 spacecraft

NASA

3/60

Astronaut Bruce McCandless II photographed 320 ft from the Space Shuttle Challenger during the first untethered EVA, made possible by his nitrogen jet propelled backpack (Manned Manuevering Unit or MMU) in 1984

NASA

4/60

The brilliant tapestry of young stars flaring to life resemble a glittering fireworks display in the 25th anniversary NASA Hubble Space Telescope image

NASA

5/60

Space shuttle Atlantis blasts off from Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral, Florida in 2011. This lift off is the last in the 30-year-old shuttle program

Getty Images

6/60

The first teklevision image of Earth from a weather satellite taken by the TIROS-1 satellite in 1960

NASA

7/60

The Echo 2 satellite in 1960. Once the balloon was launched into orbit, a prerecorded message from President Dwight Eisenhower was transmitted from California and heard with clarity in New Jersey

NASA

8/60

The original seven Mercury astronauts and pioneers in human space exsploration pose in their silver spacesuits in 1961

NASA

9/60

President John F. Kennedy calls for a moon landing in 1961 durning Congress

NASA

10/60

Astronaut John Glenn climbs into his Friendship 7 space capsule in the Atlas rocket in 1962. Glenn was the first American to orbit the earth

NASA

11/60

A close-up view of an astronaut’s bootprint in the lunar soil, photographed with a 70mm lunar surface camera during the Apollo 11 extravehicular activity (EVA) on the moon in 1969

NASA

12/60

Man’s first landing on the Moon. Lunar Module, “Eagle,” touched down gently on the Sea of Tranquility on the east side of the Moon. Astronauts Edwin Aldrin and Neil Armstrong wre the first men to walk on the Moon in 1969

NASA

13/60

After an 8 month voyage to Mars, Mariner 4 makes the first flyby of the Mars (the red planet) in 1965 and became the first spacecraft to take close-up photographs of another planet

NASA

14/60

Astronaut Edward H. White II, pilot on the Gemini-Titan 4 spaceflight, is shown during his egress from the spacecraft. His face is covered by a shaded visor to protect him from the unfiltered rays of the sun. White became the first American astronaut to walk in space. He remained outside the spacecraft for 21 minutes during the third revolution of the Gemini-4 mission in 1965

NASA

15/60

The X-15 completed 199 flights to the edge of space from 1959-1968. Neil Armstrong was one of it’s budding young pilots

NASA

16/60

Earthrise over the moon from Apollo 8 in 1968

NASA

17/60

American astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin and Michael Collins lift off from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, in the mammoth-sized Saturn V rocket on their way to the moon during the Apollo 11 mission in 1969

18/60

Astronaut Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin, Jr. saluting the US flag on the surface of the Moon during the Apollo 11 lunar mission in 1969

NASA

19/60 Home

View of Moon limb with Earth on the horizon in 1969 during the Apollo 11 mission

NASA

20/60

Apollo XI astronauts Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Buzz Aldrin laugh with President Richard Nixon aboard the USS Hornet in 1969

Richard Nixon Foundation via Getty Images

21/60 Lunar mission

Astronaut John W. Young, commander of the Apollo 16 lunar landing mission, leaps from the lunar surface as he salutes the United States flag at the Descartes landing site during the first Apollo 16 extravehicular activity (EVA) in 1972

NASA

22/60

First image of Viking 1’s foot plantid on martian soil foot in 1976

NASA

23/60

The first ever long distance image of the Earth and Moon together. The image photograph was taken by Voyager 1 in 1977

NASA

24/60

A dramatic view of Jupiter’s Great Red Spot and its surroundings in 1979

NASA

25/60

The first space shuttle launch Columbia lifts off in 1981

NASA

26/60

Astronaut Sally Ride on the flight deck of the space shuttle Challenger in 1983. She became the first American woman in space

NASA

27/60

One of the most celebrated images taken by the Hubble called ‘Pillars of Creation’

NASA

28/60

Space shuttle Challenger destructs after lift off in 1973

NASA

29/60

NASA’s Extreme Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope aboard ESA’s SOHO spacecraft took this image of a huge, handle-shaped prominence in 1999. Prominences are huge clouds of relatively cool dense plasma suspended in the Sun’s hot, thin corona

NASA

30/60

Trailing a column of flame and smoke that dwarfs it, Space Shuttle Endeavour leaps into the clear blue Florida sky on mission STS-99 in 2000

31/60

Space Shuttle Atlantis clears the tower as it roars into space on mission STS-106 after a perfect on-time launch in 2000

NASA

32/60 2004

The deepest view of 10,000 galaxies taken by the Hubble Space Telescope called the Hubble Ultra Field Deep (2004)

NASA

33/60 2005

A new view of the Eagle Nebula, one of the two largest and sharpest images Hubble Space Telescope has ever taken (2005)

NASA

34/60

International Space Station pictured by the crew of Atlantis in 2008

NASA

35/60

The rim of Gale Crater is visible in the distance, through the dusty haze, in this view of NASA’s Curiosity rover of a sloping hillside on Mount Sharp

NASA

36/60

Taken on June 03, 2008 and released by NASA on June 4, 2008 shows US space shuttle Discovery Mission Specialist Michael Fossum being photographed by US Mission Specialist Ronald Garan (reflected in Fossum’s face shield) as they work outside The International Space Station during the first of three planned space walks.

AFP/Getty Images

37/60

In celebration of the International Year of Astronomy 2009, NASA’s Great Observatories — Hubble Space Telescope, Spitzer Space Telescope, and Chandra X-ray Observatory — have produced a matched trio of images of the central region of our Milky Way

NASA

38/60

A striking black and white image showing the detail of the planet Saturn

NASA

39/60

This majestic false-color image from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope shows ‘mountains’ where stars are born. These towering pillars of cool gas and dust are illuminated at their tips with light from warm embryonic stars

NASA

40/60

The space shuttle Atlantis is seen over the Bahamas in 2011 prior to a perfect docking with the International Space Station

NASA

41/60

Aurora Australis, seen from a point over the southeast Tasman Sea near southern New Zealand. in 2011

NASA

42/60

NASA astronaut Sunita Williams, Expedition 32 flight engineer, appears to touch the bright sun during the mission’s third session of extravehicular activity (EVA). During the six-hour, 28-minute spacewalk in 2012

NASA

43/60

Behold one of the more stunningly detailed images of the Earth yet created. This Blue Marble Earth montage, created from photographs taken by the VIIRS instrument in 2012 on board the Suomi NPP satellite, shows many stunning details of our home planet

NASA

44/60

Numerous recognizable features appear in this detailed view of London, photographed by an Expedition 10 crew member on the International Space Station (ISS). The most striking visual features are green open spaces such as Regent’s Park, Hyde Park and St. James’s Park east of Buckingham Palace

NASA

45/60

International Space Station image of London at night

NASA

46/60

This image of Tropical Storm Anna taken from the International Space Station in 2015

NASA

47/60

Pluto’s haze layer and its blue colour, taken by the New Horizons Ralph/Multispectral Visible Imaging Camera (MVIC) in 2015

NASA

48/60

NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, dark, narrow streaks on the slopes of Hale Crater are inferred to be formed by seasonal flow of water on surface of present-day Mars. These dark features on the slopes are called “recurring slope lineae” or RSL

NASA

49/60

Earth observation taken during a night pass by the Expedition 49 crew aboard the International Space Station (ISS) in 2016

NASA

50/60

The moon rises in low Earth orbit by NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik from the International Space Station in 2017

NASA

51/60

Hurricane Harvey is pictured off the coast of Texas in 2017

NASA

52/60

The International Space Station continues its orbit around the Earth as Expedition 50 astronauts captured this night image of sparkling cities and a sliver of daylight framing the northern hemisphere in 2017

53/60

This composite image made from a series of 2018 photos shows a self-portrait of NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover in the Gale Crater

NASA

54/60

US. National Parks From Space. Mt Saint Helen’s looking spectacular from above

NASA

55/60

SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft as it lifts off on a Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida in 2018

NASA

56/60

NASA’s Juno spacecraft captures Jupiter’s southern hemisphere, as the spacecraft performed its 13th close flyby of Jupiter in 2018

NASA

57/60

The stunning iamge was shared on social media by astronaut Paolo Nespoli

NASA

58/60

The Bailey’s Beads effect is seen as the moon makes its final move over the sun during the total solar eclipse

NASA

59/60

The Moon is seen passing in front of the Sun during a solar eclipse from Ross Lake, Northern Cascades National Park, Washington

NASA

60/60

Swirling cloud belts and tumultuous vortices within Jupiter’s northern hemisphere picture taken by NASA’s Juno spacecraft as it performed it’s 13th flypast. Juno was about 9,600 miles (15,500 kilometers) from the planet’s cloud tops.

NASA

Flying above 99 per cent of the atmosphere’s obscuring water vapor at up to 45,000 ft, Sofia “observes in infrared wavelengths and can pick up phenomenon impossible to see with visible light.” Nasa said.

It has been operating since 2010, and has already made a number of discoveries about the universe, including heat pouring out of Jupiter’s interior through holes in its clouds. It has also peered through the dense dust clouds of the Messier 82 galaxy to catch a glimpse of tens of thousands of stars forming.

Nasa has said it will make the announcement at a media teleconference at 5pm UK time on Monday, October 26.

Those taking part in the briefing will be Paul Hertz, Astrophysics division director at NASA Headquarters, Washington and Jacob Bleacher, chief exploration scientist for the Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate at NASA headquarters.

Sofia, the world’s largest airborne observatory, is a modified 747 that flies high in the atmosphere to provide its telescope with a clear view of the universe 

Casey Honniball, postdoctoral fellow at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, in Greenbelt, Maryland and Naseem Rangwala, project scientist for the Sofia mission based at Nasa’s Ames Research Centre, in Silicon Valley, California will also speak.

In it statement about the discovery Nasa referenced its Artemis program.

Under the program, it will send the first woman and next man to the lunar surface in 2024. I will be the first lunar landing with humans since 1972.

Apollo 11 – In pictures

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Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin, Jr. saluting the US flag on the surface of the Moon during the Apollo 11 lunar mission on July 20, 1969

NASA

2/62

‘Apollo 11 lunar landing mission crew with (L-R) mission commander Neil A. Armstrong, command module pilot Michael Collins and lunar module pilot Edwin E. Aldrin Jr. posing in their space suits

EPA

3/62

Neil Armstrong steps into history July 20, 1969 by leaving the first human footprint on the surface of the moon

Getty Images

4/62

Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin, the first men to land on the moon, plant the U.S. flag on the lunar surface. Photo was made by a 16mm movie camera inside the lunar module, shooting at one frame per second

AP

5/62

American astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin, and Michael Collins lifted off from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, in the mammoth-sized Saturn V rocket on their way to the moon during the Apollo 11 mission. Cmdr. Armstrong and pilot Aldrin landed the spacecraft, Eagle, on the moon’s Sea of Tranquility on 20 July 1969

6/62

The cover of a Life magazine special edition, headlined ‘To the Moon and Back,’ features a close-up of American astronaut Edwin E. Aldrin Jr. as he poses in his spacesuit on surface of moon during the Apollo 11 space mission, August 11, 1969. Visible in the reflection of the faceplate of Aldrin’s spacesuit is his photographer, fellow astronaut Neil A. Armstrong, and the lunar module Eagle during Apollo 11 voyage.

Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images

7/62

Astronaut Neil Armstrong displays a plaque attached to a landing leg of the lunar module descent stage and will be left on the moon by the Apollo 11 astronauts as Col. Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin (centre) holds the Apollo 11 insigna at a news conference at the Space Center. Command Module.
Pilot Lt. Col. Michael Collins stands to thr right.

AP

8/62

The official insignia of NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission

Getty Images

9/62

Astronaut Ronald Ellwin Evans (1933 – 1990), a member of the support team of NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, in a gondola during centrifuge training in Building 29 of the the Manned Spacecraft Center’s Flight Acceleration Facility in Houston, Texas, 15th April 1969

Getty Images

10/62

American astronaut Neil Armstrong (1930 – 2012), commander of the Apollo 11 lunar mission, in training in the Apollo Lunar Module Mission Simulator at the Kennedy Space Center’s Flight Crew Training Building, Florida, 19th June 1969

Getty Images

11/62

Astronaut Neil Armstrong, wearing an Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU), carries out lunar surface simulation training in Building 9 of the Manned Spacecraft Center (MSC) in Houston, Texas, 18th April 1969

Getty Images

12/62

The Apollo 11 spacecraft 107, Lunar Module 5 and Saturn V AS-506 rocket arrive at Pad A, Launch Complex 39 at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida

Getty Images

13/62

03 July 1969 of the Interior of Operations Control Room in the Kennedy Space Center, for the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission

AFP/Getty Images

14/62

Crewmen for the Apollo 11 flight pose at the Manned Spacecraft Centre, Houston, Texas, in front of a mock up of their spacecraft

PA

15/62

Apollo 11 astronauts Mike Collins (left), Neil Armstrong (centre), and Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin, in front of the Lunar Landing Module Simulator at the Kennedy Space Centre, USA, prior to their landing on the moon

Getty Images

16/62

A pre-launch twilight photo of the The Apollo 11 Saturn V space vehicle

Getty Images

17/62

The BBC’s moon-landing presenters in their ‘Apollo Space Studio’ July 21, 1969

18/62

Some of the thousands of people who camped out on beaches and roads adjacent to the Kennedy Space Center in Florida to watch the Apollo 11 mission liftoff aboard the Saturn V rocket

AFP/Getty Images

19/62

Commander Neil Armstrong tries out a chest-mounted Hasselblad camera before NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, 1969

Getty Images

20/62

Launch Control Center personnel watching as the ‘Saturn V’ rocket carrying the ‘Apollo 11’ astronauts lifts off the launch pad in Cape Canavarel on 16 July 1969

EPA

21/62

The American flag fluttering in front of a ‘Saturn V’ rocket carrying the ‘Apollo 11’, the first Lunar landing mission, into space a Cape Canaveral, USA on 16 July 1969

EPA

22/62

Saturn V rocket lifting off from its launch pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center at the start of the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission. Astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin, Jr., and Michael Collins blasted off for the first man on the Moon missio

AFP/Getty Images

23/62

The launch of NASA’s Apollo 11 space vehicle from Pad A, Launch Complex 39 at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, on its lunar landing mission, 16th July 1969

Getty Images

24/62

The early moments after the launch of NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, 16th July 1969

Getty Images

25/62

The Moon limb and ‘Eagle’ Lunar Module during ascent over Mare Smythii with the Earth seeen on the horizon on 20 July 1969

NASA

26/62

The Lunar Module (LM) of the Apollo 11 space mission in orbit on July 21, 1969

AFP/Getty Images

27/62

The Earthrise viewed from lunar orbit prior to landing on July 20, 1969

NASA

28/62

Flight controllers at the Space Center in Houston, Texas, USA, as the ‘Apollo 11’ mission’s lunar landing module descends to the surface of the moon on 20 July 1969

EPA

29/62

Flight controllers at the Mission Operations Control Room in the Mission Control Center at the Manned Spacecraft Center in Houston, celebrate the successful conclusion of the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission

AP

30/62

Commander Neil Armstrong in the lunar module (LM) at Tranquility Base on the surface of the Moon, during NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, July 1969

Getty Images

31/62

Lunar Module Pilot Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin in the lunar module (LM) at Tranquility Base on the surface of the Moon, during NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, July 1969

Getty Images

32/62

The ‘Eagle’ lunar landing module in landing configuration in lunar orbit taken by service module ‘Columbia’ commander Michael Collins on 20 July 1969

EPA

33/62

Buzz Aldrin on walking on the surface of the moon

NASA

34/62

Apollo 11 LM Eagle lunar landing module collecting data on moon surface

The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images

35/62

Buzz Aldrin standing besides a lunar seismometer, looking back toward the lunar landing module in this photo taken by ‘Apollo 11’ commander and first Man on the Moon, Neil Armstrong, on 20 July 1969

EPA

36/62

Astronauts, Neil Armstrong and Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin on the Apollo 11, Moon landing

37/62

Buzz Aldrin on the Moon’s Sea of Tranquility taken by July 20, 1969, photo obtained from NASA and taken by Neil Armstrong

AFP/Getty Images

38/62

Apollo 11 space mission US astronaut Buzz Aldrin back aboard the lunar module “Eagle” after spending more than 2.5 hours on the lunar surface

AFP/Getty Images

39/62

Apollo 11 space mission US astronaut Buzz Aldrin is seen preparing a sandwich aboard the lunar module “Eagle” on July 21, 1969 after spending more than 2½ hours on the lunar surface

AFP/Getty Images

40/62

Craters on the far side of the Moon as photographed during NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, 20th July 1969

Getty Images

41/62

Lunar sample number 10046 from NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, under scientific examination in building 37 of the Lunar Receiving Laboratory at the Manned Spacecraft Center in Houston, Texas, 4th August 1969

Getty Images

42/62

Half of a stereoscopic image taken at the bottom of a crater on the Moon with the ALSCC (Apollo Lunar Surface Closeup Camera) during NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, July 1969. Prominent deposits of glass can be seen

Getty Images

43/62

Astronaut Neil Armstrong, Commander of NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, inside the Lunar Module the ‘Eagle’ on the surface of the Moon during the mission, 20th July 1969

NASA

44/62

‘Apollo 11’ astronaut Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin’s boot and footprint in lunar soil on 20 July 1969

NASA

45/62

Apollo 11 space mission US astronaut Buzz Aldrin is seen conducting experiment on the moon’s surface on a picture taken by Neil Armstrong a while after both climbed down the ladder of the lunar module “Eagle” on July 21, 1969 to become the first men in history to set foot on the moon’s surface

NASA

46/62

Lunar Module Pilot Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin sets up the Solar Wind Composition experiment, part of the Early Apollo Scientific Experiments Package (EASAP), at Tranquility Base on the surface of the Moon, during NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, July 1969. The Lunar Module or ‘Eagle’ is behind him

Getty Images

47/62

Astronaut Edwin Buzz Aldrin deploys the seismic experiments package on the surface of the moon

PA

48/62

1969: Apollo 11 astronaut Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin deploys a scientific experiment package on the surface of the moon. In the background is the Lunar Module, as is a flag of the United States

Getty Images

49/62

President Richard Nixon on the phone in his White House office congratulating the astronauts of the Apollo 11 mission Neil Armstrong and Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin, Jr., who are seen on a screen performing the first steps on the Moon

AFP/Getty Images

50/62

Edwin E. Aldrin Jr., lunar module pilot walks on the surface of the moon near the leg of the Lunar Module (ML) “Eagle” during the Aopllo 11 extravehicular activity (EVA)

AFP/Getty Images

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circa 1969: Michael Collins, American astronaut, with Neil Armstrong and Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin, the first astronauts to land on the moon, seen in Paris. Collins is holding up a model of a spacecraft Apollo 11

Getty Images

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US Navy para rescue man Lieutenant Clancey Hatleberg disinfecting Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins, and Buzz Aldrin, wearing their quarantine suits in the life raft during recovery operations in the Pacific Ocean, after the successful completion of their lunar landing mission

AFP/Getty Images

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US President Richard M. Nixon welcoming the ‘Apollo 11’ astronauts (L-R) Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Edwin Aldrin confined to the Mobile Quarantine Facility (MQF) aboard the ‘USS Hornet’, the prime recovery ship for the historic lunar landing mission, at sea, on 24 July 1969

EPA

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New York City welcomes the Apollo 11 crew in a ticker tape parade down Broadway and Park Avenue

NASA

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New York city welcomes Apollo 11 crew men in a showering of ticker tape down Broadway and Park Avenue in a parade on 13 August 1969

AFP/Getty Images

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New York City welcomes the Apollo 11 crew in a showering of ticker tape down Broadway and Park Avenue on August 13, 1969

Getty Images

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The three US astronauts from the Apollo 11 mission take part in a ticker tape parade in the Ginza, Tokyo, during a two-day visit to Japan on their Goodwill Tour of the world, 4th-5th November 1969

Getty Images

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The crew of Apollo 11 Michael Collins, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stand in front of the Apollo command module Columbia after US Vice President Al Gore awarded them the Samuel P. Langley medal 20 July, 1999 at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC

AFP/Getty Images

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Lunar Mission Apollo 11 Command Module Pilot Michael Collins’ Space suit is seen inside the Conservation Laboratory of the Air and Space Museum in Chantilly, near Washington

AFP/Getty Images

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Lunar Mission Apollo 11 Command Module Pilot Michael Collins gloves are seen inside the Conservation Laboratory of the Air and Space Museum in Chantilly, near Washington

AFP/Getty Images

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Three video tapes bought by a NASA intern in 1976, which according to Sotheby’s is said to be the only surviving original Apollo 11 recording of man’s first steps on the moon

Reuters

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Original items which were acquired and reproduced, including phones, ashtrays and coffee mugs, are displayed at the newly restored Apollo Mission Control Room at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston

AFP/Getty Images

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Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin, Jr. saluting the US flag on the surface of the Moon during the Apollo 11 lunar mission on July 20, 1969

NASA

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‘Apollo 11 lunar landing mission crew with (L-R) mission commander Neil A. Armstrong, command module pilot Michael Collins and lunar module pilot Edwin E. Aldrin Jr. posing in their space suits

EPA

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Neil Armstrong steps into history July 20, 1969 by leaving the first human footprint on the surface of the moon

Getty Images

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Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin, the first men to land on the moon, plant the U.S. flag on the lunar surface. Photo was made by a 16mm movie camera inside the lunar module, shooting at one frame per second

AP

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American astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin, and Michael Collins lifted off from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, in the mammoth-sized Saturn V rocket on their way to the moon during the Apollo 11 mission. Cmdr. Armstrong and pilot Aldrin landed the spacecraft, Eagle, on the moon’s Sea of Tranquility on 20 July 1969

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The cover of a Life magazine special edition, headlined ‘To the Moon and Back,’ features a close-up of American astronaut Edwin E. Aldrin Jr. as he poses in his spacesuit on surface of moon during the Apollo 11 space mission, August 11, 1969. Visible in the reflection of the faceplate of Aldrin’s spacesuit is his photographer, fellow astronaut Neil A. Armstrong, and the lunar module Eagle during Apollo 11 voyage.

Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images

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Astronaut Neil Armstrong displays a plaque attached to a landing leg of the lunar module descent stage and will be left on the moon by the Apollo 11 astronauts as Col. Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin (centre) holds the Apollo 11 insigna at a news conference at the Space Center. Command Module.
Pilot Lt. Col. Michael Collins stands to thr right.

AP

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The official insignia of NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission

Getty Images

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Astronaut Ronald Ellwin Evans (1933 – 1990), a member of the support team of NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, in a gondola during centrifuge training in Building 29 of the the Manned Spacecraft Center’s Flight Acceleration Facility in Houston, Texas, 15th April 1969

Getty Images

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American astronaut Neil Armstrong (1930 – 2012), commander of the Apollo 11 lunar mission, in training in the Apollo Lunar Module Mission Simulator at the Kennedy Space Center’s Flight Crew Training Building, Florida, 19th June 1969

Getty Images

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Astronaut Neil Armstrong, wearing an Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU), carries out lunar surface simulation training in Building 9 of the Manned Spacecraft Center (MSC) in Houston, Texas, 18th April 1969

Getty Images

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The Apollo 11 spacecraft 107, Lunar Module 5 and Saturn V AS-506 rocket arrive at Pad A, Launch Complex 39 at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida

Getty Images

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03 July 1969 of the Interior of Operations Control Room in the Kennedy Space Center, for the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission

AFP/Getty Images

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Crewmen for the Apollo 11 flight pose at the Manned Spacecraft Centre, Houston, Texas, in front of a mock up of their spacecraft

PA

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Apollo 11 astronauts Mike Collins (left), Neil Armstrong (centre), and Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin, in front of the Lunar Landing Module Simulator at the Kennedy Space Centre, USA, prior to their landing on the moon

Getty Images

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A pre-launch twilight photo of the The Apollo 11 Saturn V space vehicle

Getty Images

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The BBC’s moon-landing presenters in their ‘Apollo Space Studio’ July 21, 1969

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Some of the thousands of people who camped out on beaches and roads adjacent to the Kennedy Space Center in Florida to watch the Apollo 11 mission liftoff aboard the Saturn V rocket

AFP/Getty Images

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Commander Neil Armstrong tries out a chest-mounted Hasselblad camera before NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, 1969

Getty Images

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Launch Control Center personnel watching as the ‘Saturn V’ rocket carrying the ‘Apollo 11’ astronauts lifts off the launch pad in Cape Canavarel on 16 July 1969

EPA

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The American flag fluttering in front of a ‘Saturn V’ rocket carrying the ‘Apollo 11’, the first Lunar landing mission, into space a Cape Canaveral, USA on 16 July 1969

EPA

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Saturn V rocket lifting off from its launch pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center at the start of the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission. Astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin, Jr., and Michael Collins blasted off for the first man on the Moon missio

AFP/Getty Images

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The launch of NASA’s Apollo 11 space vehicle from Pad A, Launch Complex 39 at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, on its lunar landing mission, 16th July 1969

Getty Images

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The early moments after the launch of NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, 16th July 1969

Getty Images

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The Moon limb and ‘Eagle’ Lunar Module during ascent over Mare Smythii with the Earth seeen on the horizon on 20 July 1969

NASA

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The Lunar Module (LM) of the Apollo 11 space mission in orbit on July 21, 1969

AFP/Getty Images

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The Earthrise viewed from lunar orbit prior to landing on July 20, 1969

NASA

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Flight controllers at the Space Center in Houston, Texas, USA, as the ‘Apollo 11’ mission’s lunar landing module descends to the surface of the moon on 20 July 1969

EPA

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Flight controllers at the Mission Operations Control Room in the Mission Control Center at the Manned Spacecraft Center in Houston, celebrate the successful conclusion of the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission

AP

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Commander Neil Armstrong in the lunar module (LM) at Tranquility Base on the surface of the Moon, during NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, July 1969

Getty Images

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Lunar Module Pilot Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin in the lunar module (LM) at Tranquility Base on the surface of the Moon, during NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, July 1969

Getty Images

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The ‘Eagle’ lunar landing module in landing configuration in lunar orbit taken by service module ‘Columbia’ commander Michael Collins on 20 July 1969

EPA

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Buzz Aldrin on walking on the surface of the moon

NASA

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Apollo 11 LM Eagle lunar landing module collecting data on moon surface

The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images

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Buzz Aldrin standing besides a lunar seismometer, looking back toward the lunar landing module in this photo taken by ‘Apollo 11’ commander and first Man on the Moon, Neil Armstrong, on 20 July 1969

EPA

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Astronauts, Neil Armstrong and Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin on the Apollo 11, Moon landing

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Buzz Aldrin on the Moon’s Sea of Tranquility taken by July 20, 1969, photo obtained from NASA and taken by Neil Armstrong

AFP/Getty Images

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Apollo 11 space mission US astronaut Buzz Aldrin back aboard the lunar module “Eagle” after spending more than 2.5 hours on the lunar surface

AFP/Getty Images

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Apollo 11 space mission US astronaut Buzz Aldrin is seen preparing a sandwich aboard the lunar module “Eagle” on July 21, 1969 after spending more than 2½ hours on the lunar surface

AFP/Getty Images

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Craters on the far side of the Moon as photographed during NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, 20th July 1969

Getty Images

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Lunar sample number 10046 from NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, under scientific examination in building 37 of the Lunar Receiving Laboratory at the Manned Spacecraft Center in Houston, Texas, 4th August 1969

Getty Images

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Half of a stereoscopic image taken at the bottom of a crater on the Moon with the ALSCC (Apollo Lunar Surface Closeup Camera) during NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, July 1969. Prominent deposits of glass can be seen

Getty Images

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Astronaut Neil Armstrong, Commander of NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, inside the Lunar Module the ‘Eagle’ on the surface of the Moon during the mission, 20th July 1969

NASA

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‘Apollo 11’ astronaut Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin’s boot and footprint in lunar soil on 20 July 1969

NASA

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Apollo 11 space mission US astronaut Buzz Aldrin is seen conducting experiment on the moon’s surface on a picture taken by Neil Armstrong a while after both climbed down the ladder of the lunar module “Eagle” on July 21, 1969 to become the first men in history to set foot on the moon’s surface

NASA

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Lunar Module Pilot Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin sets up the Solar Wind Composition experiment, part of the Early Apollo Scientific Experiments Package (EASAP), at Tranquility Base on the surface of the Moon, during NASA’s Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, July 1969. The Lunar Module or ‘Eagle’ is behind him

Getty Images

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Astronaut Edwin Buzz Aldrin deploys the seismic experiments package on the surface of the moon

PA

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1969: Apollo 11 astronaut Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin deploys a scientific experiment package on the surface of the moon. In the background is the Lunar Module, as is a flag of the United States

Getty Images

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President Richard Nixon on the phone in his White House office congratulating the astronauts of the Apollo 11 mission Neil Armstrong and Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin, Jr., who are seen on a screen performing the first steps on the Moon

AFP/Getty Images

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Edwin E. Aldrin Jr., lunar module pilot walks on the surface of the moon near the leg of the Lunar Module (ML) “Eagle” during the Aopllo 11 extravehicular activity (EVA)

AFP/Getty Images

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circa 1969: Michael Collins, American astronaut, with Neil Armstrong and Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin, the first astronauts to land on the moon, seen in Paris. Collins is holding up a model of a spacecraft Apollo 11

Getty Images

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US Navy para rescue man Lieutenant Clancey Hatleberg disinfecting Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins, and Buzz Aldrin, wearing their quarantine suits in the life raft during recovery operations in the Pacific Ocean, after the successful completion of their lunar landing mission

AFP/Getty Images

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US President Richard M. Nixon welcoming the ‘Apollo 11’ astronauts (L-R) Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Edwin Aldrin confined to the Mobile Quarantine Facility (MQF) aboard the ‘USS Hornet’, the prime recovery ship for the historic lunar landing mission, at sea, on 24 July 1969

EPA

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New York City welcomes the Apollo 11 crew in a ticker tape parade down Broadway and Park Avenue

NASA

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New York city welcomes Apollo 11 crew men in a showering of ticker tape down Broadway and Park Avenue in a parade on 13 August 1969

AFP/Getty Images

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New York City welcomes the Apollo 11 crew in a showering of ticker tape down Broadway and Park Avenue on August 13, 1969

Getty Images

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The three US astronauts from the Apollo 11 mission take part in a ticker tape parade in the Ginza, Tokyo, during a two-day visit to Japan on their Goodwill Tour of the world, 4th-5th November 1969

Getty Images

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The crew of Apollo 11 Michael Collins, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stand in front of the Apollo command module Columbia after US Vice President Al Gore awarded them the Samuel P. Langley medal 20 July, 1999 at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC

AFP/Getty Images

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Lunar Mission Apollo 11 Command Module Pilot Michael Collins’ Space suit is seen inside the Conservation Laboratory of the Air and Space Museum in Chantilly, near Washington

AFP/Getty Images

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Lunar Mission Apollo 11 Command Module Pilot Michael Collins gloves are seen inside the Conservation Laboratory of the Air and Space Museum in Chantilly, near Washington

AFP/Getty Images

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Three video tapes bought by a NASA intern in 1976, which according to Sotheby’s is said to be the only surviving original Apollo 11 recording of man’s first steps on the moon

Reuters

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Original items which were acquired and reproduced, including phones, ashtrays and coffee mugs, are displayed at the newly restored Apollo Mission Control Room at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston

AFP/Getty Images

Nasa said the trip was “to prepare for our next giant leap – human exploration of Mars as early as the 2030s. Understanding the science of the Moon also helps piece together the broader history of the inner solar system.”

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