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The Apollo 11 crew

16/07/2009 2931 views 5 likes
ESA / About Us / ESA history

The Apollo 11 crew is Commander Neil Armstrong, civilian test pilot, Command Module Pilot Michael Collins and Lunar Module Pilot Edwin (Buzz) Aldrin, both US Air Force pilots.

Neil Armstrong

Neil Armstrong
Neil Armstrong

Apollo 11 Commander Neil Alden Armstrong was born 5 August 1930 in Wapakoneta, Ohio. From 1949 to 1952, he served as a US Navy aviator, flying 78 combat missions during the Korean War. Armstrong joined the US National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NASA's predecessor) as a research pilot on many pioneering high speed aircraft, including the X-15.

In 1962, Armstrong became a NASA astronaut. He served as command pilot for the Gemini 8 mission in 1966, and performed the first successful docking of two vehicles in space. In 1969, on the first Apollo lunar landing mission, he gained the distinction of being the first man to land a craft on the Moon and the first man to step on its surface.

Michael Collins

Michael Collins
Michael Collins

Michael Collins, Lt. Col. USAF, was born on 31 October 1930, in Rome, Italy. After serving as a jet fighter pilot, he became an experimental flight test officer at the Air Force Flight Test Center, Edwards Air Force Base, California, logging 5000 hours flying time.

He was one of the third group of astronauts named by NASA in October 1963. As pilot on the three-day Gemini 10 mission in 1966, Collins shared with command pilot John Young in the accomplishments of that record-setting flight, including setting an altitude record and making a spacewalk.

Edwin 'Buzz' Aldrin

Edwin 'Buzz' Aldrin
Edwin 'Buzz' Aldrin

Edwin 'Buzz' Aldrin, Col., USAF, was born 20 January 1930, in Montclair, New Jersey. As a USAF jet fighter pilot during the Korean War, he flew 66 combat missions and shot down two MiG 15 aircraft.

In 1963, he gained a PhD in astronautics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, before being chosen for the third group of NASA astronauts. In November 1966, he and command pilot James Lovell were launched into space on the Gemini 12 spacecraft on a four-day flight, which brought the Gemini programme to a close. Aldrin established a new record for extravehicular activity (EVA), spending over five hours outside the spacecraft.

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