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Although the lander may appear "flimsy and gangly," says NASM curator Allan Needell, the craft represents "a very pure design built for a very specific mission." (Mark Avino / NASM, SI)

Apollo 11's Giant Leap for Mankind

40 years ago, the lunar module landed on the moon, providing an unforgettable moment for the millions watching back on Earth

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Owen Edwards is a freelance writer and author of the book Elegant Solutions.

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Owen Edwards

Owen Edwards is a freelance writer who previously wrote the "Object at Hand" column in Smithsonian magazine.

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