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Apollo 15: Crewed Lunar Landing

Mission Details

Mission Name: Apollo 15
Mission Type: Crewed Lunar Lander
Operator: NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration)
Launching State: United States
Location: Hadley Rille
Latitude: 26.13406
Longitude: 3.62991
Launch Date: 26 July 1971, 13:34:00 UTC
Landing Date: 30 July 1971, 22:16:29 UT
Crew: David R. Scott, commander; James B. Irwin, lunar module pilot; Alfred M. Worden, command module pilot
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Image Source: NASA


The mission of the Apollo program was to perform a crewed lunar landing. The first four flights, including Apollo 10, tested the equipment used to ultimately place humans on the lunar surface.

The first Apollo flight happened in 1968. The first Moon landing took place in 1969. The last Moon landing was in 1972. A total of twelve humans walked on the Moon as a result of the Apollo program.

Per NASA: Apollo 15 was the first of the Apollo “J” missions capable of a longer stay time on the moon and greater surface mobility. There were four primary objectives falling in the general categories of lunar surface science, lunar orbital science and engineering-operational. The mission objectives were to explore the Hadley-Apennine region, set up and activate lunar surface scientific experiments, make engineering evaluations of new Apollo equipment, and conduct lunar orbital experiments and photographic tasks.

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Heritage Consideration

Apollo 15 was the first mission that gave humans the opportunity to drive a vehicle on another celestial body besides Earth. In addition, Apollo 15 set several new records for crewed spaceflight: heaviest payload in a lunar orbit of approximately 107,000 pounds, maximum radial distance traveled on the lunar surface away from the spacecraft of about 17.5 miles (previous high was 2.1 miles on Apollo 14), most lunar surface EVAs (three) and longest total of duration for lunar surface EVAs (18 hours, 37 minutes—almost the total time spent in lunar orbit by Apollo 8), longest time in lunar orbit (about 145 hours; only two hours less than the entire Apollo 8 mission), longest crewed lunar mission (295 hours), longest Apollo mission (295 hours—previous high was 244 hours, 36 minutes on Apollo 12), the first satellite placed in lunar orbit by a crewed spacecraft, and first deep space and operational EVA. Command Module Pilot Al Worden orbited the Moon while astronauts David Scott and James Irwin were on the surface.

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Apollo 17: Crewed Lunar Landing
Scientific objectives of the Apollo 17 mission included, geological surveying and sampling of materials and surface features in a preselected area of the Taurus-Littrow region; deploying and activating surface experiments; and conducting in-flight experiments and photographic tasks during lunar orbit and transearth coast.
Apollo 16: Crewed Lunar Landing
Command Module Pilot Ken Mattingly orbited the Moon while astronauts John Young and Charlie Duke were on its surface. Apollo 16's landing spot was chosen in order to gather geologically older lunar material. Charlie Duke left a picture of his family on the site.
Apollo 14: Crewed Lunar Landing
The primary objectives of this mission were to explore the Fra Mauro region centered around deployment of the Apollo Lunar Surface Scientific Experiments Package, or ALSEP; lunar field geology investigations; collection of surface material samples for return to Earth.
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