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Friday, 17 July 2009

Moon Landing: T Minus 3 Days - Mission Overview

Forty years ago today, Apollo 11 and its crew were on the first day of their journey from Earth orbit to lunar orbit. As much as science fiction stories suggest that space travel is fast, in reality the distances involved are so enormous that it does take time - it would take three days to cross the quarter of a million miles to the Moon.

This gives us time to look at the mission in more detail. This illustration is the centrespread of Rockets and Spacecraft Book 1, one of a number of small but heavily illustrated children's books that Collins published in the 1960s under their Orbit Books imprint. While undated, the book was produced early in the Apollo program, indicated by it referring to the lander as the Lunar Excursion Module (LEM). This was changed by NASA in May 1966 to the shorter Lunar Module (LM) although its pronunciation remained as "lem".

Yesterday - Launch
Tomorrow – The Spacecraft

• Coinciding with Jeremy's countdown to the 40th Anniversary of the first Moon Landing, downthetubes is publishing "Moon Landing 40th Anniversary: A Comics Celebration" - a gallery of illustrations and comic art inspired by space exploration.
Contributions are very welcome: if you don't want to join our forum and upload art but would like to join in with the celebrations, simply send your work to Please ensure images are no larger than 2MB in size and include a brief bio and web link so we can give you deserved credit.

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