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Exploration

Looking Back at Apollo

By Keith Cowing
May 23, 2011
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Apollo plus 50 – The meaning of the race to the moon, half a century after the starting gun, The Economist
“As to whether it is was worthwhile, there is no accountant’s answer even 50 years on. The Apollo project cost about $150 billion in 2010 dollars, five times as much as the Manhattan Project and 18 times the cost of digging the Panama Canal. It is not easy today to remember how imperative it seemed back then for the free world to show that it could outperform its totalitarian rival. But the moon landing was more than a win in the cold war. It also changed the way people of all nations thought about themselves and the planet they share. It showed that it really was possible for man to step out of this world into another. Apollo 8’s photographs of a little Earth, shining vulnerably in a great black emptiness, made people aware of the planet’s fragility and helped to spur the green movement.”

NASA Watch founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.