For me, in no particular order: -the Apollo 11 landing -the whole post-explosion Apollo 13 saga -the first televised liftoff from the Moon (Apollo 15)
But I can remember a hundred other things that impressed the hell out of me, too. Apollo X - which few people think much about - had me wondering what I'd have done if I were the LM pilot. It must have been awfully tempting to send a "Houston, we have a problem" message during Snoopy's descent to 30,000 feet and have the chance to be the first on the Moon. Maybe someone knows - did the Apollo X LM carry sufficient fuel to land - and was the ascent stage fueled just in case there was a forced landing?
Apollo 8 deffinitely. I remember just imagining how awestruck I was thinking about a comment from one of the astronauts. It was the one about stretching an arm out with a thumb raised, and finding all of humanity and basically everything one knowns, to be covered by that thumbnail. That was what struck home to me at the time about the emormity of space travel. Nothing has ever quite matched that moment to me.
Other moments of course, Apollo 11 landing, and the entire world holding its breath.
Apollo 17 sent back some stunning pictures! I was doing a Geology O level course (amongst my A levels) at the time so I was spellbound!
Apollo 13, all the way from "Houston, we have a problem!" to the emotion at re-entry and beginning to think the worst (that 3 minutes (?? seemed like hours) must have been one of the longest of my, and probably many people's lives) and then final relief when we saw the parachutes open and then spalshdown and recovery! I only felt total relief when they stepped out on deck of the carrier!
Aldrin punched Bart Sibrel ;D its my favorite moment,
Im kidding ;D I like to see the pictures of the moon missions and the films its incredible, is cool to see the astronauts driving cars on the moon going to different places on the moon a rock that is very far looks small and they come closer and the rock is very big. I think the networks should bring the high definition versions of this missions to the media I know the dvds are already on the market. Is me or Tv was more optimistic in the apollo time? networks give to many ours to conspiracy shows of all kind everybody is afraid of everything today, the sun, the food, the neighbor.
IIRC, the LM was actually too heavy to land safely with it's fuel load.
Actually, Snoopy could have landed safely but it could not have made it back to orbit. To save weight, the ascent propellant tanks were not completely filled because the rest of the LM was overweight.
So yes, Stafford and Cernan could have been the first to land on the moon, but they would also have been the first to die there.
Could it even land? I thought that it did not have the full Luminary software suite onboard (it had Luminary 1, Apollo 11 had Luminary 1A). IIRC Luminary 1 was missing some crucial routines that were necessary for a landing??
"There's a hole in my neighbourhood down which of late I cannot help but fall"
Good question - I don't know if Snoopy had the full software load. Considering the lead time required to debug the code and manufacture the core ropes, I wouldn't be surprised if it wasn't there. Good point.
I wasn't alive for this like some of you gents. I was born the same year of the Challenger disaster, if rather later in the year. There was some moments I do like looking back on it that show the more human side to the astronauts and not just as they heroes they also are. For example, the alternate patch made by the backup crew of Apollo 14 and liberally distributed throughout both the CSM and LM. "'Beep, beep', my ass!" indeed. Another notable example is the rather adult and ribald inclusions into the Apollo 12 checklists.
Conspiracy Theorist Mindset: "It's Turtles All The Way Down. Government Turtles. "
I only learned about one of my now-favorite exchanges fairly recently when I read about it in "Return to Earth". The Apollo 11 crew was preparing to execute the TEI burn to return to earth when Collins wanted to double-check the CSM's attitude. As he pointed out to Aldrin and Armstrong, "I want to make sure that we're going forward. It is really important that we be going forward", adding "There is only one really bad mistake you can make here", which I took to be accidentally executing the TEI burn with the CSM facing rearwards. (I worked it out - they would have impacted the far side before AOS and the world would never have known what happened.)
At this point the whole crew gets a bit silly; Aldrin works out the direction of a rocket's thrust from first principles: "Let's see. The engine bell is that-a-way, the hot gases go out that-a-way, resulting in thrust this-a-way".
I found this exchange very believable and amusing because it captured the black sense of humor that many pilots seem to have. I guess it's how they cope with there being any number of possible mistakes that would be their last. Because the exchange was captured on the tape recorder during LOS, it also showed the more human side of the astronauts rather than the formal, self-conscious image they always had to project when they knew the world was listening.