Experience 18 minutes of world history, as if you were there, landing on the moon

I still get chills and misty eyes watching this. For those of us that watched the Apollo 11 moon landing live on TV, we had to be content with the voices of Walter Cronkite and Wally Schirra along with simulated models and radio traffic. Here, thanks to this award winning new website, we can experience the landing as if we are in the cockpit of the LEM and listening in the live communications loop (both Air-to-Ground and Flight Director’s audio loop) from the beginning of the descent, to the touchdown, and the STAY/NO STAY decision making afterwards.

This website even keeps track of the pitch angle of the LEM from telemetry data, and tracks what console at Houston Mission Control is speaking. You can even watch the heart rate of Neil Armstrong.

firstmenonmoon_panel

Trust me, this will be the best 18 minutes you ever spend online. It makes me proud to watch.

From the About page at the website:

This project is an online interactive featuring the Eagle lunar landing. The presentation includes original Apollo 11 spaceflight video footage, communication audio, mission control room conversations, text transcripts, and telemetry data, all synchronized into an integrated audio-visual experience.

Until today, it has been impossible to comprehensively experience mankind’s shining exploratory accomplishment in a singular experience. We have compiled hours of content available from public domain sources and various NASA websites. Thamtech staff and volunteers generously devoted their time to transcribe hours of speech to text. By using simultaneous space and land based audio and video, transcripts, images, spacecraft telemetry, and biomedical data—this synchronized presentation reveals the Moon Shot as experienced by the astronauts and flight controllers.

Our goal is to capture a moment in history so that generations may now relive the events with this interactive educational resource. The world remembers the moon landing as a major historical event but often fails to recognize the scale of the mission. This interactive resource aims to educate visitors while engaging them with the excitement of manned-spaceflight to build a passion for scientific exploration.

Visitors begin the experience by hearing the words of Buzz Aldrin while simultaneously viewing the moon through the lunar module window. Moments later, the audience hears capsule communicator Charlie Duke inform flight director Gene Kranz that the astronauts are on schedule to start the descent engine. Throughout the presentation, visitors are able to customize their experience by jumping to key moments in the timeline. The timeline guides visitors to the crucial moments in the mission, including: program alarms (computer alerts), famous Go No-Go polls in the control room, low level fuel milestones, and landing.

“The Eagle has Landed.” Neil Armstrong’s words signal a technical milestone and successful execution of John F. Kennedy’s vision to land a man on the moon safely. Prior to these famous words, visitors see the synchronized audio communications, transcripts, video of the lunar module’s casting a shadow on the lunar surface, and biomedical telemetry of Armstrong’s heart rate surpassing 150 beats per minute!

The footprints from Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong on July 20, 1969 paved the way for five additional successful trips to the lunar surface over the following years. Thamtech takes pride in providing visitors with a glimpse into this and mankind’s enduring spirit for exploration.

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Click the image below to watch, listen, and experience the moon landing like you have never seen it before. – Anthony

firstmenonmonn_go

P.S. For you Lewandowsky types, if you happen to run into Buzz Aldrin at a climate conference where he talks about his climate skepticism, it is probably best that you don’t call him a “denier” (moon landing or otherwise) to his face.

Here’s video of Buzz landing the punch heard round the world.

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Adam

When we were young we were looking forward to having holidays on the Moon when we were older. What happened to the space program? Somewhere along the line we stopped reaching for the stars. We have placed to much emphasis on “it’s the taking part that counts”. No it isn’t! What counts is that you fought with all of your might to be the best. Not just the best that you could be but better than everyone else. That you tried to smash your competitors and take all of the glory. Not that you “took part”. F*** that, taking part is for wimps. Let’s get people back onto the moon and further. Not because we can’t build a robot to go there for us, but because it is our dream.

For some reason I get the impression that someone here follows John Ringo on Facebook. I think that punch video is getting a lot of play today.

Much of my manned space flight live TV watching was spent finding the network where the talking heads said the least and didn’t talk over the capcom and astronaut chatter. I even listened to a couple space shuttle launches on shortwave radio when NASA relayed the feed there.
One of the great things about the Apollo 11 landing was that Walter Cronkite was actually speechless for a few seconds.
I’ll watch the site later tonight. And cheer again for Buzz. It’s got to be galling to spend so much of your life training to get to the moon and then be accused of being part of a con.

Streetcred

The sequence brought a tear to my eyes … and I’m not even an American ! That was such a great day, what an achievement for those dedicated patriots and smart people at NASA … can’t say much for NASA today except that they aren’t a shadow of the past.
The punch brought joy to my heart … LOL !

Great! Just great!
Thanks, Anthony.

Niff

What planet does Bart Sibrel come from…? The lunar landing sequence was enthralling. Breathing again.

OssQss

Thank you!
We need reminded of our accomplishments as a “unified” country more often!

papiertigre

That was a good punch. He rocked that moron’s world.

Clay Marley

Great site, really enjoyed that. I remember watching on TV that night as a young squirt. I wish they had a graphic showing the trajectory; its really amazing.
Back in the early 90’s I worked at JSC on a small robotic Lunar Lander called Artemis. My job was to design the guidance system for each of the burns. The last burn, the powered descent phase as seen at this web site, was the most difficult. First thing I did was ask around to see if NASA had any old timers left who understood this maneuver. Sad thing was, no one did. So I spent hours at the JSC technical library scrolling through microfiche records of technical papers from the 60’s. I found several written by an engineer named George W. Cherry around 1963. He really should get the credit for that maneuver. From this theoretical work, called “e-guidance”, I was able to create a new guidance algorithm and improve on it.
First time I got it working in the simulator I plotted out the trajectory. It wasn’t what I had imagined. The vehicle comes screaming in almost horizontal, parallel with the Moon’s surface for almost the entire flight, until the very end when the pitch to vertical maneuver begins. Most people might imagine this long benign vertical descent as seen in Kubrick’s 2001. Not at all. I can imagine why Armstrong’s heart rate was well over 100.
It was a hoot to think that back then I was probably the only person at NASA who knew how to land on the moon. I left NASA several years later after that program and several other advanced projects were canceled. It was the Apollo program that inspired me to go into aerospace engineering. We just don’t have the will to embark on such adventures any more.

Like most of us who regularly come here I come primarily for the latest on the climate wars, but every now and then Anthony throws us a curve. What a curve. A wonderful achievement landing on the moon, what a wonderful achievement building WUWT.

Byron

Loved the landing sequence , as Niff said , breathing again.
As for Bart Sibrel , what a pathetic excuse for a human being , watch Sibrel`s body language toward the end , He`s trying to use His size , youth and crazy to intimidate what He sees as just an old man . Trying to intimidate someone who`s ridden into space on something could have easily become pretty much the world`s biggest non-nuclear bomb ? Well that was never going to work .

Glen

I remember clearly watching it – they had the studio mock up ready as the live transmission was a bit sketchy, and the stand in was starting to back down the ladder then the live feed came back on and we got to watch the real thing. Pretty sure about that..

tgmccoy

Good for Buzz having known an 82 year old retired Ranger-82nd Airborne- I would not want to have eve considered making Buzz mad. He got exactly what he deserved…
Thanks, Anthony for the web link!!!

It sounds wonderful, but I’m happy with my childhood memories of being allowed to stay up for the event. And the punch is a classic.

dp

When heroes lived among us. It was a great time to be alive.

I remember the day well – I spent the morning riding horses with a friend in the foothills west of Calgary, Alberta and listened to the landing on the radio; then driving back into Calgary to watch the first steps on the moon. Such a dichotomy.
Great day.

Master_Of_Puppets

The Landing Sequence is Wonderful !, Absolutely Wonderful !
Thank you Anthony. And thank those who worked so hard to get all of this important information together and compiled into a format that conveys the reality of the events as they occurred every second of the way, 43 years ago. This is a major achievement.

Jim Butts

I can’t believe that an otherwise intelligent website would champion the placement of men on the moon as a worthwhile accomplishment. This was nothing more than a political stunt to show that we had rocket technology and could threaten the Soviet Union. I ask, what was learned that could not have been learned with robots at much reduced expense? As we are doing regarding Mars. There is no good reason to send men to Mars as there was no good reason to send men to the moon.

Tom in Texas

Where’s the thumbs up / down buttons when they’re needed?

“When we were young we were looking forward to having holidays on the Moon when we were older. What happened to the space program?”
I have it from the head of NASA himself that Muslim Outreach is a much more important goal then your silly “space program”!!!

papiertigre

@ Jim Butts says:
May 1, 2013 at 8:33 pm
Well Jim. At least you admit Buzz took the trip.

@ Jim Butts: Your name says it all.

Janice Moore

I am SO PROUD to be an American! That night (or day, depending on where you were), the entire WORLD (except Kruschev and his gang) were Americans. For a few hours, as we gazed up at that quiet, bright, silver disc in the sky and prayed, or sat glued to the television set, or listened to the radio, or heard the news from the barefoot boy running back to the village in Africa, we were all Americans.
And that one of those brave men, our heroic astronauts, who insisted on celebrating communion while on the moon, should be harassed by a man not fit to wipe their helmets AND USING THE BIBLE (“…even the Devil…”), is despicable. How old was Buzz Aldrin in 2011? WAY TO GO, BUZ! Always a hero.
@ Codetech and all the other software engineers here, DO YOU REALIZE WHO SAVED THE DAY for that mission? The computer programmer! As I recall, from a 1969 the computer was given code that made it do far more calculations than it needed to and it was bogging down and kept turning the alarm on that would auto-shut down the engines ON THE SPOT with only minutes to re-write the code, the programmer DID IT and the alarms stopped and the flight continued — WHEW! The astronauts got most of the glory, but, one (see, I can’t even recall his name!) stalwart computer programmer was a hero that day. As were hundreds of others whose names most of us will never know. But, they were there.
And so, too, are you, all you fine scholars who doggedly pursue the battle for truth with wit, grace, and integrity. YOU GO, WUGT Science Heroes!
God, bless America!

Janice Moore

“… from a 1969 ‘Readers Digest’ article (September, I think)… ” [oops!]

papiertigre

Why don’t we have a Buzz Aldrin day? / Moonwalk Parade. Where all realists can come together and properly celebrate the acheivements of this man…

u.k.(us)

Jim Butts says:
May 1, 2013 at 8:33 pm
======
click-off

papiertigre

Maybe we can get REM to headline the event.

I remember this like it was yesterday. Watched it on a black & white TV with a hundred other soldiers in Tuy Hoa, Viet Nam. It was the only TV in the barracks. Everyone was proud, amazed, and astonished at what we were witnessing. Still gives me goose bumps.

Janice Moore

And, Mr. Stealey, I am so proud of YOU. Thank you for fighting for the freedom of the South Vietnamese and Cambodians and for all of us who wanted to stop the spread of that deadly plague, Communism. You guys had them on the run. Then, the politicians yanked you back home. I’m glad you made it back. I (virtually) shake your hand, soldier.

A thousand years from now no one will remember B. Hussein Obama, or Iraq, or the EU, or Vladimir Putin, or Puff Daddy, or Al Gore.
But they will remember this.
[And thank you, Janice.]

I’m old enough to have watched this landing live at my friend’s house (we were in high school). Having grown up following the space program, I took the technology and skills for granted; that didn’t really change after my stint working at NASA/JSC (Space Shuttle simulators) shortly after college. But watching this now, I am awestruck at the accomplishment; it’s like watching Lindbergh fly across the Atlantic solo. We’re talking about technology nearly half a century ago, being used to land men on the moon and then return them safely to earth. It staggers me, but it also gives me great hope for the current private space ‘race’ going on, and I hope I live long enough (just turned 60) to see humans set foot on the moon again.

GREAT SHOT BUZZ: Thank you Anthony!!!

Janice Moore

“… Buzz Aldrin day? / Moonwalk Parade. Where all realists can come together… ” [Papiere Tigre]
Hey, Mr. Tiger, that sounds, GRRRrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrEAT!
That physicists, mathematicians, chemists, computer scientists, mechanical engineers, and all the others PUT A MAN ON THE MOON is an accomplishment that SHOULD be honored every year. And I think, while America and its “We can do it!” attitude ought to be celebrated (in the hope that such an attitude might once again be the norm, here), such a parade’s main focus should be on the achievements of the various scientific disciplines demonstrated by the Apollo missions. All the hardworking, genuine, scientists OF THE WORLD should be honored every year.
A bunch of science geeks put a man on the moon.
That was really something.

DavidH

I had always wanted to do this – not that I ever had the knowledge, ability or access to information to actually write the software. The only thing else I wanted to see was a simulated lunar surface view of the LM descending, skipping over the boulder field and landing. That can be V2.0 of their video.

u.k.(us)

I know you can bounce a lander onto Mars, then operate it by speed of light radio (which has a delay of 4 to 24 minutes depending on the position of Mars orbit).
We’ll need some more speed, to get a human there and back ?

Janice Moore

U.K. (US)!! I sure hope I’m not too late, this time. THANK YOU, so much, for your very kind and encouraging compliment to me a couple weeks ago (re: my first post). YOU MADE MY YEAR. I’ve been looking out for you (and posted a thank you once, alas, you were long gone). And, you CAN write.
Gratefully yours,
Janice

papiertigre

@ Janice Moore says:
May 1, 2013 at 10:19 pm
A film strip showing the group photos of the participants, with vintage era photos of specific engineers and crew and then a fade into the current of the person.
And maybe a tribute reel showing those who have passed, like they do at the Oscars.

From the Wright brothers first flight in 1903, it took less than 44 years for the US to break the sound barrier and 66 years to leave the Earth and touch the Moon. What a great achievement for all humanity, from a time when science, the US government and NASA were dedicated to the discovery and wonder of Truth. Now our tax dollars give us Carbon endangerment findings and Moslem outreach. Thanks for the reminder Anthony….when we reclaim our democracy, we can again expand humanity’s boundaries.

Janice Moore

dbstealey — my pleasure.

Bob Diaz

http://www.firstmenonthemoon.com/ Was fantastic !!!!!!! It’s great to see and hear all the background as it happened.
Now as for Buzz hitting that Bozo, I sure wish he hit him harder. ;-))

Janice Moore

@ Papiere Tigre — yeah. And have “Give Me One Moment in Time [when I’m more than I thought I could be]” by Whitney Houston … when I’m racing with destiny…

Adam

@u.k.(us) We’ll need some more speed, to get a human there and back ?
If we had a real goal of doing it, then we would be able to develop the technology to go faster. Humans can do anything if they try. The problem is, we are not trying anymore. Too much worrying about “terrorism” and “security”. If all of the money that we spend in all of the wars and propping up other governments was put into a space program we would probably be building the first MacDonald’s on Mars next year.

Janice Moore

… playing in the background, rewoitoiaejirw2983y49hunfvbhdasj I am too tired!
R.O.
F.W.E.
(a little mystery for the WUWT bloggers to solve, heh, heh, heh – Clue: The captain of the Titanic never entered that into his log.)
Oh, no, don’t try to solve the string of chars in line 1!! AAck — that was just me demonstrating how tired my brain is!

dp

Jim Butts says:
May 1, 2013 at 8:33 pm
I ask, what was learned that could not have been learned with robots at much reduced expense?

What have we learned from you? Perhaps you can be replaced by a robot, too.
For reasons that escape me you did not touch at all on the knock-on effect of the space program. When that butterfly flapped its wings a direct consequence was this website and other electronic and technological marvels that fill our lives and save many more. So very much we take for granted was kick started by the space program and the support industries and research laboratories that sprang forth to fill the need created by that program. I can create a precise connection between the launch of Sputnik, an event I remember well, and my very successful career in the high tech fall-out produced in the historic wake of that launch that is as clear and concise as if written by James Burke himself. Reading your post one would think you hadn’t lived through any of it.

papiertigre

http://buzzaldrin.com/the-man/faq/
Question: I’ve heard that the MTV Video Music Award statuette is named after Buzz. Is this true?
Answer: Yes, the VMA “Moonman” award has been alternately referred to as the “Buzzy” and images of Buzz on the moon were used for MTV’s original station identification. In fact, the network aired “20 Things You Didn’t Know About the VMA’s” as part of the 20th Anniversary of their awards show, featuring Buzz as the inspiration for the “Moonman” statuette. MTV former President Tom Freston is a personal fan of Buzz’s, and recently presented him with the statuette inscribed “To the original Moonman.”
I bet MTV would provide the float decorations, just from left over VMA gear.

Richard Keen

dbstealey says:
…Watched it on a black & white TV with a hundred other soldiers in Tuy Hoa, Viet Nam. It was the only TV in the barracks.
>>> Meanwhile, back at the Tropic Test Center in Panama (home of the jungle training school, an alma mater of special forces, astronauts, and thousands of GIs), where I was learning the Army version of tropical meteorology and its varied uses, we all took a break to watch it on our barracks’ B&W TV set next to the pool table. Like db, I got a good case of goosebumps too, despite the sticky hot weather. We were lucky to see it at all – the US Southern Command and the Panamanian TV station got together and bought up all the undersea cable bandwidth that evening to pipe the show across the Caribbean. If they hadn’t, we would have not seen it until tapes were flown down from Miami the next morning.
So on a warm, still, drippy equatorial evening this motley crew, dressed in jungle pants and sweaty T-shirts, watched humanity’s high water mark live on a B&W television next to a pool table.
I took some Kodachromes of the broadcast, and will send one to Anthony, in case he’d like to add it to this post.

I remember seeing that video of Buzz duking that doofus years ago. I was almost as proud of him at the time as I was the day we sat in front of the tv watching that historic landing. The new presentation is terrific. It gives one a much better notion of just how exceptional those guys really were.

Doug Jones

DavidH, Take a look at this video which uses archival navigation data from the LM telemetry, combined with Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter images to simulate a wider view of the landing.

Also, the Orbiter space flight simulator available at http://orbit.medphys.ucl.ac.uk/ will allow you to fly a landing yourself. It’s a pretty steep learning curve, but doing a successful landing on target is a remarkable feeling. (Of course a modern autopilot puts it exactly on any point you choose, with no skills needed.)

Janice Moore says:
“A bunch of science geeks put a man on the moon.”
And only using vacuum tube computers! It is that old American “Can Do!” attitude that I miss most of all.

Thanks, Anthony.
@bfwebster: Yes, it was a bunch of geeks who put men on the moon. And machinists. Pilots, Draftsmen, Engineers, Secretaries, and Payroll clerks. That’s really the miricle in the Apollo-Lunar missions — so many people, so little time, doing what had not been done before.
This website’s presentation of the simultaneous communication loops between CapCom and Eagle and the “Loop” at JSC is great in that it shows a small part of the teamwork at play so necessary for success.
The movie Apollo 13 did justice to that sense of teamwork.
Likewise, the HBO miniseries, From Earth to the Moon covered so many under-appreciated aspects of the space program. Episode 5, “Spider” was the 8 year history from the “crazy” idea of Lunar Orbit Rendezvous to the Grumman team development of the LEM on impossible deadlines. And absurd weight budgets. “What if they don’t need seats?”
Read “Failure is Not an Option”, by Gene Kranz.