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BBC – Future – Apollo with 50 numbers: The cost



25bn: Apollo program total, in US dollars

The president who promised a person to go to the Moon at the end of the decade was not zealously exploring space.

"I'm no longer interested in space," John F Kennedy told NASA's chief, James Webb, at a private meeting at the White House in 1962. "I think it's good, I think we should find out about it, we are willing to spend a reasonable amount of money but we are talking about the amazing spending that troubled our budget. "

The conversation, released by the Presidential Library of John F Kennedy, showing the true motive of the President: to defeat the Soviet Union. "In my opinion, do this at this time or in fashion, is because we hope they beat us," she says, "and shows that the beginning behind, just as we did for a few years, through God , we passed them. " [1

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But the value of the winning slot space will be huge.

The total estimated cost of the Apollo program comes around $ 25bn, equivalent to $ 175bn (£ 140bn) today. In 1965, up to 5 percent of the government's spending was In funding, now it's a tenth of it.

Billions paid for rocket, spacecraft, computer, land control and 400,000 or so people need to land only 12 people on the Moon.

34: Percent of public approval for the Missions of the Month in 1967

Did $ 25bn spend on placing people in money spent on the Moon? Not according to US taxpayers in 1967.

Poll data from time – compiled by Roger Launius from the National Air and Space Museum in Washington DC and published in the journal of the Space Journal – indicates that the United States public has no confidential space is a national priority.

Even in 1961, at the height of fear of Soviet domination in space, people – at best – ambivalent about Apollo funding.

Polls in June of that year show that even between government funding favors "man's trips to the Moon" and battles. After January 1967 Apollo 1 fire killed three astronauts at launchpad, more than half of respondents opposed missions.

Only immediately after Apollo 11 Moon landing in 1969, the project won wide support. After nine months, following the destruction of Apollo 13, backing up for missions again fell.

It is a myth that Apollo's mission was a great national universal support effort

When Gene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt walked the Moon to Apollo 17, nearly 60% of the public Americans believed that the country is spending too much space. However, at this time, space budgets have been slashed and additional missions on the month have been canceled.

It is fictional that the missions of Apollo are a great national work with universal support. If the affirmation is to be believed, most Americans instead see the money spent elsewhere.

100,000: Cost of an Apollo spacesuit, in US dollars

Spacesuits designed for moon walk should be hard, strong and supported. It is not surprising then, that they have commissioned them from a bra manufacturer – the International Latex Corporation.

Each custom made consists of many layers of plastic fibers, rubber and metal wires, all covered with Teflon-coated fabric, hand stitched by a team of seamstresses.

The Apollo suit had a separate backpack that contained life support systems – effectively turning it into a self-contained spacecraft. With flexible joints to give the astronaut a great range of movements, this is a significant advance to previous designs developed for the NASA's previous Gemini program. " The Gemini suit is really a problem and, without any doubt, is a real limitation of what we can do outside the spacecraft," says Apollo 9 astronaut Rusty Schweickart .

In a spacewalk in March 1969, Schweikart became the first person to try out a new outfit, appearing outside of his Apollo spacecraft in orbit around the world.

My friends should run around the Moon and they can not drag a heavy umbilical one mile across the moon's surface – Rusty Schweickart

"It really made me independent of the spacecraft – I had no navigator in command module service that I had only a tether to keep me from drifting away, "he said.

"My friends should run around over the Moon and they can not drag a heavy navigator a mile across the moon's surface, so we had to have that independent backpack."

For the Apollo missions the spacecrafts are upgraded to improve flexibility, allowing the astronauts to sit on the lunar rover.

388m: Cost of building land months, US dollars

Before launching Apollo 11 in the Month, President Richard Nixon prepared two discourses – one for success and one more if left behind the astronauts.

has ordained that the people we are in the Moon to explore in peace will remain in the Moon to retire in peace, "the speech went." These brave men, Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin, know that there is no hope for their recovery, but they also know that there is hope for humanity in their sacrifice. "

two people safe in another world and – important – bring them back home. lunar module with its weak frame, thin walls and spindly legs can only work in space.

The lander consists of two sections, or stages, a landing stage landing pad and a stage the climb with an engine brings the astronauts back to the mother ship in the orbit of the month.But if the sole climb engine fails, there is no way to get the crew home.

If it does not work you're done – Gerry Griffin

"It is one of the few single failures we point to the entire Apollo program, "said Flight Director, Gerry Griffin. "The work of the lunar module has a job – there's a bell engine and a mixer where all those proprietors are together – if it's not working you're done."

A contract with Grumman Corporation has been signed to build landers for a total cost of $ 388m. But the construction was filled with delays and the first unmanaged launch was not until January 1968.

Within a year, Apollo 9's astronaut Jim McDivitt and Rusty Schweikart placed the spacecraft through the it paces its Earth orbit. Then, during Apollo 10, Tom Stafford and Gene Cernan took the lander within 47,000ft (14.2km) of the moon's surface.

On their return to the command module, they got a serious problem.

switches in the line up navigation system, prepared Cernan and Stafford to separate the upper stage from the stage of descent. But one of the switches was in the wrong position and when they burned the machine, the spacecraft began to not control.

"Son of a bitch!" Cried cernan.

"I saw the lunar horizon another direction, eight times in 15 seconds," he told me later. "Is that scary? Yes, when you're frightened but I have no time to be afraid."

Fortunately, Stafford took manual control and stabilized the spacecraft. Engineers later calculated two seconds more and they crashed into the Moon.

"We learned that we had no hardware problems, we had trouble with people," Cernan says. "No matter how well our thinking, no matter how often we rehearsed it, you can screw up if you're not careful."

Despite almost dying, Cernan still looks forward to apologizing to his American public in his language.

33.31: Travel cost claimed by Aldrin for a trip to the Moon, US dollars

When they return to Earth, Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Mike Collins are the most famous people on the planet . But it is not seen in their salary.

Depending on their old age, Apollo's astronauts have earned between $ 17,000 and $ 20,000 a year. It is worth $ 120,000 (£ 96,200) today and compares to the 21st Century astronauts. TV anchors covering missions can get more.

There is no risk money for going to the Moon, but the crew have claimed travel expenses. Aldrin, for example, agreed to $ 33.31 to cover his journey from home to the nearby Manned Spacecraft Center in Houston … via Florida, the Moon and Hawaii.

Buzz Aldrin is advertising everything from insurance, cars and porridge oats

Above all, astronauts also had a share of revenue from a Life magazine deal.

When they left the space program, many astronauts were lost through the industry in high-paying executive positions. Others have become TV masters or make money through personal demonstrations and endorsements.

After suffering a cold over his mission at Apollo 7, Wally Schirra became the face of a set of decongestant tablets. Buzz Aldrin revealed everything from insurance, cars and cooked oats. His earnings today are likely to be more than in 1969.

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