Mankind's "giant leap"
Lesson Date : 2019-08-05


  • Mankind's "giant leap"
  • "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind".
  • The American astronaut Neil Armstrong said these famous words as he placed his foot on the Moon's surface.
  • He was the first person to do so.
  • Many people believe that the 1969 Moon landing was one of recorded history's most remarkable events.
  • On July 16, 1969, a rocket took Armstrong and his two companions into space.
  • They were Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin and Michael Collins.
  • This year's July 16th marked the 50th anniversary of the Moon Landing mission, or Apollo 11.
  • Four days after leaving the Earth, Armstrong and Aldrin made history by walking on the lunar surface.
  • Collins continued to circle the Moon in the Service Module spacecraft.
  • Armstrong died aged 82 in 2012.
  • Buzz Aldrin is now 89 years old and Michael Collins is 88.
  • Apollo 11's success ended what became known as the Space Race.
  • It was an unofficial competition between the U.S. and the Russian-led Soviet Union.
  • The first to land a man on the Moon would win.
  • Both countries wanted to prove to the world that they had the best space technology.
  • The U.S. and Russia fought on the same side during the Second World War (1939 – 1945).
  • Soon after the war ended, the two became enemies.
  • Within a few years, the Cold War started.
  • This was not a real war.
  • The name is used to describe the period between 1947 and 1991.
  • In 1957, Russia was the first country to use a rocket to put a satellite into orbit.
  • Called Sputnik, it was able to send simple radio signals back to the Earth.
  • Russian was also the first to send a living thing into space.
  • It was a dog called Laika.
  • The dog died a few hours later from overheating.
  • In 1961, Yuri Gagarin, a Russian cosmonaut, became the first person in space.
  • His flight, which lasted for 108 minutes, orbited the Earth once.
  • At that time, John F. Kennedy was the American president.
  • Kennedy made a famous speech.
  • He declared the U.S. would land a man on the Moon and return him safely to the Earth within ten years.
  • NASA is the American space agency.
  • It drew up a Moon landing plan called Project Apollo.
  • It was named after the Ancient Greek god of light, music and the Sun.
  • The manned Apollo missions started badly.
  • Apollo 1 caught fire before the rocket lifted off.
  • The three astronauts on board died.
  • Each Apollo mission was designed to test equipment and flight plans.
  • In 1968, the three Apollo 8 astronauts flew around the Moon ten times and returned to the Earth.
  • They were the first people to do this.
  • Armstrong was chosen to command Apollo 11.
  • This mission would have a three-man crew and would be the first to attempt a Moon landing.
  • Apollo 11 spacecraft began its three-day journey to the Moon soon after its launch.
  • This is a distance of 386,000 kilometers.
  • After it began to orbit the Moon, the spacecraft separated into two parts.
  • Armstrong and Aldrin were in the Lunar Module.
  • Collins remained in the Command and Service Module.
  • The Lunar Module was called "Eagle".
  • The bald eagle is a symbol of the U.S. and the national bird.
  • After the Lunar Module touched down on the Moon, Armstrong sent a message to NASA.
  • It said, "the Eagle has landed".
  • The two astronauts then checked the spacecraft's equipment for several hours.
  • When the checks were completed, Armstrong climbed down the ladder and stood on the Moon's surface.
  • The landing was shown on live television.
  • About 600 million people from around the world watched.
  • The gravity on the Moon is about 17% of what it is on Earth.
  • Therefore, a 90-kilogram object on the Earth would weigh about 15 kilograms on the Moon.
  • Armstrong and Aldrin spent two hours and 20 minutes on the Moon.
  • They collected rock and soil samples, took photographs, set up some equipment, and planted the American flag.
  • The two astronauts then climbed back into the Lunar Module.
  • It lifted off and rejoined the Command and Service Module.
  • The Eagle was jettisoned.
  • A few days later, the Module, with the three men inside, splashed down in the Pacific Ocean.
  • In 1972, NASA sent its last manned mission to the Moon, or Apollo 17.
  • After Armstrong and Aldrin, ten other astronauts walked on the Moon.
  • All were Americans.
  • Recently, NASA has announced plans to send astronauts back to the Moon in 2024.
  • At least one will be a woman.
  • The mission has been named Artemis after the Greek goddess of the Moon.
  • Many people predict this mission is likely to be the beginning of the space economy.
  • It will involve mining, tourism and research.