Neil Armstrong's footprints on moon are intact after 53 years
The first time man set foot on the moon will always be considered one of the biggest feats in human history. Now, to commemorate the 53rd anniversary of the colossal moment, NASA has shared a video from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter showing the untarnished footprints of Neil Armstrong. Armstrong became the first person to walk on the moon on July 20, 1969.
Why does this story matter?
The Cold War between the US and USSR wasn't just fought on land. It had reached space as well. The two countries competed with each other until the Americans trumped the Soviets with their moon landing success. The magnitude of that success becomes clearer if you think about the fact that no other country has accomplished the feat yet apart from the US.
Video of Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter shows tracks of astronauts
Apollo 11 landed on the lunar surface on July 20, 1969. To commemorate the 53rd anniversary of the monumental occasion, NASA has released a video from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. The video shows the tracks of Armstrong and Aldrin, the first two to walk on the moon. July 20 is also celebrated as 'International Moon Day.'
Watch till end to see man's baby steps on moon
How are the footprints still intact on moon?
Over five decades have passed since Armstrong and Aldrin made their mark on human history, but their footprints still remain. But how? The main reason is because of the moon's lack of atmosphere, which means there is no wind or rain to erase the footprints. Add to that the fact that the moon is geologically dead. Therefore, no earthquakes or volcano eruptions as well.
US sent man to moon to defeat USSR in space
In 1961, the then US President John F. Kennedy set a goal - "landing a man on the Moon and returning him safely to Earth" before the end of the decade. This declaration was part of the Cold War between the US and the erstwhile USSR. They achieved it in 1969 when Armstrong stepped foot on the moon.
Apollo 17 in 1972 was the last manned mission
From July 20, 1969 till now, there has been a total of six crewed missions to the moon, all by the US. It started with Apollo 11 and ended with Apollo 17 in 1972. Eugene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt were the last to walk on the moon. Crewed missions to the moon ended mainly because of financial reasons and safety concerns.
Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter is mapping moon's surface
Launched in 2009, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) is a robotic spacecraft of NASA that is currently orbiting the moon. Its mission is to map out the surface of the moon to find ideal locations for future crewed and uncrewed missions. "It has returned more data to Earth of any other planetary mission - nearly 1.4 petabytes!," said NASA about the LRO.