"One giant leap for mankind" Top 5 Page for this destination National Museum of Natural History Tip by matcrazy1
National Museum of Natural History, Washington D.C.: 61 reviews and 152 photos
In National Air and Space Museum I've seen original Apollo 11 command module Columbia. It was hang under the museum ceiling and I was a bit surprised that it was so small with the intrior as roomy as of average car, I guess. The truncated cone (5,900 kg) measuring only 10 feet 7 inches (3.2 m) tall and having a diameter of 12 feet 10 inches (3.9 m) across the base brought the crew of the first manned lunar landing mission back home.
Apollo 11 spacecraft consisted of the five main parts (from the top):
- launch escape system
- command module Columbia (the only part which came back to the Earth)
- service module
- lunar module Eagle (part of this module left on the Moon)
- lunar module adapter.
They all together were carried from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida to the earth's orbit by Saturn V popularly known as the Moon Rocket - a multistage liquid-fuel expendable rocket - on July 16, 1969. Of the three astronauts: Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins the last one served as a command module pilot orbiting the Moon while the first two performed the first manned landing on the lunar surface.
The lunar module with Amstrong and Aldrin landed on the Moon at 9.17 pm my time on July 20. At 3.56 am on July 21, Armstrong made his descent to the Moon surface and took his famous "one giant leap for mankind." Soon later Aldrin joined him. My parents watched it (at 3.56 am!) on Polish TV which surprisingly showed it!
I've also seen various other spacecrafts including Mercury 2 in which astronaut John H. Glenn Jr. became the first American to orbit the Earth on February 20, 1962.
Address: 4th and Independence Ave, SW; Washington DC 20560
Directions: Metro station: l'Enfant Plaza. On southern part of the National Mall, east of the Castle and west of the National Museum of the American Indian and U.S. Capitol Building. Map here
Phone: +1 (202) 633 1000
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