The Astronaut's Astronaut: Remembering John Young

Apollo 16 Commander John Young gazes across the rugged terrain during humanity’s fifth piloted lunar landing. Photo Credit: NASA

Astronaut John Young, who died recently at age 87, reduces yet further the number of veteran Moonwalkers who are still with us. Only five men—all in their 80s—can now claim to have experienced the one-sixth […]

Rediscovering the Moon: 20 Years Since Lunar Prospector

Launched 20 years ago, Lunar Prospector returned significant data pertaining to the Moon’s gravity, internal composition, origins and water-ice content. Image Credit: NASA

Twenty years ago, NASA’s Lunar Prospector spacecraft began an 18-month mission of discovery, revealing the Moon to potentially harbor vast water-ice reserves at its poles and offering tantalizing clues of a […]

Remembering John Young, an 'Astronaut's Astronaut', Gone at Age 87

Apollo 16 Commander John Young gazes across the rugged terrain during humanity’s fifth piloted lunar landing. Photo Credit: NASA

John Young, one of only 12 humans to have walked the dusty surface of the Moon, one of only three of mankind’s sons to have traveled twice to lunar distance, the only astronaut to fly […]

'The Yearning for Peace': Celebrating Christmas in Space

Since December 2000, a multi-national mix of Americans and Russians, Japanese and Italians, Dutchmen and Canadians, a Briton and a Frenchman have celebrated Christmas aboard the International Space Station (ISS). Photo Credit: NASA

As Santa commences his yearly traverse across the world this evening, in search of those whose exploits over the past dozen […]

Walking in the Void: 45 Years Since the Last Deep-Space EVA

Apollo 17 astronaut Ron Evans hauls the cylindrical film canister from the SIMbay mapping camera back to the safety of the command module, during humanity’s most recent deep-space EVA, 45 years ago, today. Photo Credit: NASA

Forty-five years ago, today, a fully-suited astronaut poked his helmeted head out of the side hatch of the […]

'Like a Big Ol' Freight Train': 45 Years Since the Launch of Apollo 17

Apollo 17 launches into the night at 12:33 a.m. EST on 7 December 1972. Photo Credit: NASA, via Joachim Becker/SpaceFacts.de

Forty-five years ago, the combined spacecraft of Apollo 17—the Command and Service Module (CSM), named “America”, and the spider-like Lunar Module (LM), dubbed “Challenger”—slipped smoothly into lunar orbit. In doing so, it represented the […]

Pad 39A, America's Moonport, Celebrates Over 100 Launches in 50 Years of Service

The launch of Apollo 11 on 16 July 1969 was arguably Pad 39A’s finest hour. Photo Credit: NASA

In a strange twist of irony, Pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center (KSC) in Florida was not originally meant to be named “39A” at all. Having supported its first launch, 50 years ago, last week, […]

Dick Gordon, Gemini High-Flyer and Solo Lunar Orbiter, Dies Aged 88

Dick Gordon (left) and Pete Conrad await the start of an emergency water egress training exercise in the Gulf of Mexico in July 1966. Photo Credit: NASA

Veteran astronaut Dick Gordon, who passed away on Monday, aged 88, brings to just 14 the number of remaining spacefarers who have traveled to the Moon and […]

'Without Breaking the Shell': 50 Years Since the Saturn V's Maiden Launch

At the stroke of 7 a.m. EST on 9 November 1967, the first Saturn V took flight. Photo Credit: NASA

“T-minus-25…,” came the calm, measured tones of the launch announcer in the pre-dawn darkness of Thursday, 9 November 1967. “Stages reporting Ready for Launch…”

Fifty years ago, the largest and most powerful rocket ever […]

Intruders in a Foreign Land: 45 Years Since Apollo 16 Almost Didn't Land on the Moon (Part 2)

Apollo 16 Commander John Young salutes the American flag on the surface of the moon. Photo Credit: NASA/Charles Duke

Apollo 16 Commander John Young salutes the American flag on the surface of the moon. Photo Credit: NASA/Charles Duke

Forty-five years ago, this week, Apollo 16 landed late on the surface of the Moon…and a carefully choreographed flight plan was instantly thrown into disarray. As outlined in yesterday’s AmericaSpace history article, a problem had […]