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[i]We all know the Apollo 11 story. Many of us were "there." If you're older than 44 years, you were watching TV that summer of '69, even if you were a baby, though babies didn't understand what all the fuss was about. Neil Armstrong was guiding himself and his crewmate, Buzz Aldrin, in that odd creation of the early space program, Eagle, the Lunar Module (LM), nearer and nearer to the Moon's surface. It was very exciting to listen.
Aldrin was calling out numbers relating to where they were and how fast they were going as they worked to make that final first touch by humanity on a celestial object. The other voice was that of Houston (NASA Mission Control), CAPCOM (capsule communicator) Charlie Duke, mostly saying that things were going okay, but, at the end, doing a countdown.
"Sixty seconds." Then, "Thirty seconds!" Finally we heard, "Contact light!"
Ever since then the story headline has been, "The dramatic first Moon landing of Apollo 11 succeeded with only twenty seconds of fuel remaining!"
No! The biggest myth about the first Moon landing is those twenty seconds. Armstrong and Aldrin could have stopped their approach a few feet above the lunar surface and stayed there for more than a minute before letting Eagle drop safely to the surface...[/i]
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