Lunar and Planetary Institute






Apollo 11 Mission


Mission Overview

Mission Plan
The Apollo 11 mission was the eleventh in a series of flights using Apollo flight hardware and was the first lunar landing of the Apollo Program. It was also the fifth manned flight of the command and service modules and the third flight of the lunar module. The purpose of the mission was to perform a manned lunar landing and return safely to Earth.

Mission Event List and Timeline

EVENT       DATE & TIME (EST)       MISSION TIME
Launch July 16    08:32:00 am 00:00:00
Translunar injection       11:16:16 am       02:44:16
CSM-LM docking       11:56:03 am       03:24:03
Lunar orbit insertion       July 19    12:21:50 pm       75:49:50
CSM-LM separation       July 20    01:11:53 pm       100:39:53
Lunar landing       03:17:40 pm       102:45:40
Begin EVA       09:39:33 pm       109:07:33
First step on surface       09:56:15 pm       109:24:15
Lunar liftoff       July 21    12:54:01 pm       124:22:01
LM-CSM docking       04:34:00 pm       128:03:00
Transearth injection       11:54:42 pm       135:23:42
Splashdown       July 24    11:50:35 am       195:18:35

Apollo 11 launchLaunch
The 363-foot-tall Apollo 11 space vehicle was launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, Kennedy Space Center, at 8:32 a.m. EST, July 16, 1969. It was the United States' first lunar landing mission. The launch vehicle, AS-506, was the sixth in the Apollo Saturn V series and was the fourth manned Saturn V vehicle. After a 2½-hour checkout period, the spacecraft was injected into the translunar phase of the mission.

Spacecraft
Very few changes were made to the Apollo 11 space vehicle from the Apollo 10 configuration. The most significant structural change was to the lunar module (LM). Added were provisions for the scientific experiments package and the Modular Equipment Storage Assembly (MESA), which housed the experiments and tools used during the lunar surface activities.

The Command Service Module Columbia The Command Service Module consisted of two parts. The Command Module (CM), 3.63 meters long and shaped like a blunt cone, was at the front or top. Equipped with couches, it served as the crew compartment and control center. Able to accommodate all three astronauts, the CM was also used for reentry. The Service Module (SM), a 6.88-meter-long cylinder, was at the rear of the CM. It provided the primary propulsion and maneuvering capability of the spacecraft. Most of the consumables (oxygen, hydrogen, propellant) were also stored in this module, which was jetisoned before reentry.
   
The Lunar Module Eagle The Lunar Module (LM) also had two parts, the descent stage and the ascent stage. The descent stage, or lower part of the LM, contained the engine used for landing on the Moon. This stage was a cruciform structure of aluminum alloy 3.23 meters high, which, with its four legs extended, had a maximum diameter of 9.45 meters. This stage also contained storage bays for equipment, and a ladder attached to one of the legs gave the crew access to the surface. When the time came to leave the surface, the descent stage served as the launch platform for the ascent stage. The ascent stage was basically a cylindrical aluminum structure 4.29 meters in diameter and 3.75 meters in height. During their time on the surface, the crew lived in, and operated from, this part of the spacecraft. It was also used to return the crew to orbit and the CSM after surface operations were completed.

 

Crew
Neil Armstrong, Mission Commander
, was born in Wapakoneta, Ohio, on August 5, 1930. He received a B.S. in aeronautical engineering from Purdue University in 1955, and an M.S. in aerospace engineering from the University of Southern California in 1970. He was selected with the second group of astronauts in September 1962. He was backup command pilot for Gemini 5, command pilot for Gemini 8, backup command pilot for Gemini 11, and backup commander for Apollo 8. As commander of Apollo 11 he became the first man to walk on the Moon. In July 1970 he became Deputy Association Administrator for Aeronautics at NASA, and retired in August of 1971.
Neil Armstrong, Mission Commander
   
Michael Collins, Command Module Pilot, was born in Rome, Italy, on October 31, 1930. He received a B.S. from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, in 1952 and was one of the third group of astronauts named in October 1963. He was backup pilot for Gemini 7 and pilot on Gemini 10. He was assigned to the Apollo 8 crew but was removed to undergo surgery. In January 1970, he resigned from NASA and the Air Force. Michael Collins, Command Module Pilot
   
Edwin ("Buzz") Aldrin, Lunar Module Pilot, was born in Montclair, New Jersey, on January 20, 1930. He received a B.S. from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, in 1951, and a Doctor of Science degree in Astronautics from MIT in 1963. He was one of the third group of astronauts named in October 1963. He was backup pilot for Gemini 9, pilot for Gemini 12, and backup command module pilot for Apollo 8. As the lunar module pilot on Apollo 11 he became the second man to walk on the Moon. He retired from NASA in July 1971. Edwin ("Buzz") Aldrin, Lunar Module Pilot

The Back-up Crew
The backup crew for Apollo 11 consisted of James A. Lovell (backup pilot for Gemini 4, pilot of Gemini 7, backup command pilot for Gemini 9, command pilot for Gemini 12, and command module pilot for Apollo 8) for the commander; William A. Anders (backup pilot for Gemini 11 and lunar module pilot on Apollo 8) for command module pilot; and Fred W. Haise (backup lunar module pilot for Apollo 8) for lunar module pilot.