What Happened on the Moon Before Apollo

What Happened on the Moon Before Apollo ?

Admin Rockets, space, Technology 2 Comments

The Apollo landings from 1969 to 1972 marked a high point in lunar exploration but Apollo didn’t just rock up on to the moon out of the blue, it took many, many missions by probes and landers over the preceding years to establish if we could send men to the moon and get them back. It’s quite strange to think that even by the late 1950’s, just over 10 years before Neil Armstrong set foot on the lunar surface we knew surprisingly little about the moon other than what we could observe from the earth and the hypotheses we drew from …

The New Space Race to the Moon between NASA, SpaceX and Blue Origin

The New Space Race to the Moon between NASA, SpaceX and Blue Origin

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Moon missions are becoming a bit like buses, it seems as though you wait the best part of 50 years for a return trip to the moon, then within a matter weeks, two, turn up at once. This is quickly turning into the new space race but this time it’s not between nation states but between private companies as Jeff Bezos, boss of Amazon and space company Blue Origin has said that they are looking to set up a base on the moon by the mid-2020’s. This comes within a week or so after Elon Musk releveled SpaceX’s plans to …

Nasa's Million Dollar Space Pen vs The Soviet Pencils

Nasa’s Million Dollar Space Pen vs The Soviet Pencils

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The story of the NASA’s million $ space pen and the soviet pencils has become one of the enduring tales  from the space race which still floats around the internet today and goes a bit like this. During the 1960’s as NASA was sending the first men in the space, they realise that pens don’t work in zero gravity, so they spent years and millions of tax payer dollars to develop one that did. Meanwhile, in the Soviet Union, the cosmonauts simply used pencils. The moral of the story to many is that NASA was a wasteful government organisation that would …

The Biggest Rocket ever Designed? - The Sea Dragon

The Biggest Rocket ever Designed? – The Sea Dragon

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In the history of space, one rocket stands out as an icon of not only the space race but of the mighty power it symbolised. That one rocket, which is still the Tallest, heaviest and most powerful ever built, was the Saturn V, which was designed to take men to the moon and later launched the first American Space station, Skylab. But if things had been a little different back in the 60’s we might have had a different rocket to hang on the bedroom walls of the space fans of the 70’s and 80’s. In the early 1960’s, a …

How did the Apollo flight computers get men to the moon and back

How did the Apollo flight computers get men to the moon and back ?

Admin computers, Science, space 2 Comments

There is much speculation by some, as to how the flight computer aboard the Apollo missions managed to get men to the moon when it had just a tiny fraction of the computing power of something like a modern smartphone. But this is quite misleading as there was not one solitary computer controlling the Apollo craft, there were 4 computers and no fancy touch screens, GUI’s or other things in a typical computer of today to waste resources on. The first of the 4 computers was the Saturn Launch Vehicle Digital Computer or LVDC, this got the rocket from the …