Less than gravity: The Lunar Landing Research Vehicle

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The LLRV in Flight [IMG: NASA]
As NASA came to grips with the enormity of the task handed to them by President Kennedy in his May 1961 congressional address, the list of hurdles standing between America and a manned moon landing was long and formidable. Although NASA’s senior management felt confident that the task could be accomplished before the end of the decade, the finer details of how this would be achieved were far less certain.

Much of the initial focus of Project Apollo fell on the fundamental question of which mission mode should be employed. Some favoured Direct Ascent – launching one huge spaceship directly to the Moon where it would land before returning to the Earth. Others argued Earth Orbit Rendezvous was far more achievable given the limitations of American rocketry at the time. A third group suggested Lunar Orbit Rendezvous may hold significant advantages, but all three approaches had one thing in common – they would involve the controlled landing of a spaceship subject to the Moon’s reduced gravity and lack of atmosphere.
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The Last Man on the Moon: review & thoughts

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I don’t go around living in the past for the most part, but every once in a while you let yourself go back in time…

Recently released feature-length documentary The Last Man on the Moon is based on the autobiography of Astronaut Eugene Cernan, commander of Apollo 17 in 1972 and the last person to have walked on the lunar surface. The film includes interviews with astronauts Alan Bean, Charlie Duke, Tom Stafford, Dick Gordon and Jim Lovell plus key figures from Mission Control, Gene Kranz and Dr. Chris Kraft. Combining these with archive footage and CGI sequences, The Last Man on the Moon not only tells Cernan’s own story but the shows the broader achievements and impacts of NASA’s race to the Moon.
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