A week afer Apollo 8 astronauts – Frank Borman, Jim Lovell, and Bill Anders – landed safely in the Pacific Ocean, they were TIME’s Men of the Year
Apollo 8 capped an incredible year of news which were not always great: two political assassinations in the US, the worsening situation in Vietnam, turmoil of college campuses and around the world, and the Soviet Invasion of Czechoslovakia.
The articles on Apollo 8 appeared in National Geographic several months after the missions but the magazine produced an in-depth story.
The Lunar Orbiters were five uncrewed missions launched between 1966 and 1967, to help select Apollo landing sites by mapping the Moon’s surface; 99.6 percent of the lunar surface was mapped.
From June 1966 through January 1968, NASA sent seven robotic spacecraft to the surface of the Moon as part of Surveyor Program. Its primary goal was to test soft landings on the Moon.
Apollo 8 Mission as it appeared in two LIFE magazines: Jan 10, 1969 and Jan 17, 1969.
Apollo 8 was the first crewed spacecraft to reach the Moon. The crew orbited the Moon ten times and the largest-ever TV audience looked on.
On January 27, 1967, a fire broke out in the command module during a pre-flight test at Cape Kennedy. All three astronauts aboard perished.
In July 18, 1966, Gemini X went up. Its purpose was to test out a few things for the future Lunar exploration: Extra-Vehicular Activities, Spacecraft Maneuvering and Docking with another spacecraft (Agena Target Vehicle, ATV), and using ATV’s engine to achieve a boost into a higher orbit.
From June 1966 through January 1968, NASA sent seven robotic spacecraft to the surface of the Moon as part of Surveyor Program. It sent back color photos.