Apollo Program

The plants in lunar soil were compared to a control group of plants grown in volcanic ash and a lunar soil simulant known as JSC-1A. The lunar samples on the right do not appear as developed as the control samples grown in volcanic ash on the left.

Innovation for Good

Scientists Prove That Plants Can Grow in Soil From the Moon

The experiment is a milestone in the path to helping humans one day experience extended stays on the lunar surface

Each sample in the redesigned facility is handled with gloves in a sealed, nitrogen-free box and stored inside a walk-in freezer kept at minus 20 degrees Celsius.

Fifty Years Later, Researchers Unbox Samples From Apollo 17

The lunar surface material was kept in a freezer at NASA's Johnson Space Center since December 1972

Materials and manufacturing details of the specially made suit of America's first space traveler were extensively analyzed before being prepared for display on a customized mannequin.

The Second Man in Space Had a Wee Wish—That He'd Used the Bathroom Before Blasting Off

Alan B. Shepard's historic Mercury spacesuit undergoes hours of conservation work for its debut when the National Air and Space Museum opens this fall

The lunar dust collected by Neil Armstrong as part of the 1969 Apollo 11 mission in will be auctioned off with a number of space-related items, and is expected to fetch between $800,000 and $1.2 million at auction

Trending Today

Apollo 11 Moon Dust Samples Go Up for Auction Against NASA's Wishes

Auction house Bonhams is expecting around $1 million

The high-tech gadget dubbed the Apollo can opener was designed to pierce the vacuum-sealed cylinder while capturing any lunar gases that may still lurk within its walls.

Why Scientists Waited 50 Years to Study This Moon Dust

This Christmas season, researchers will finally get to unseal the contents of a soil sample from the Apollo 17 mission

Not much is known about mysterious quasisatellites because of their small dimensions, distance, and ability to conceal themselves in the shadows. Kamoʻoalewa is the first quasisatellite to move within observing range of large telescopes.

A Chip Off the Moon May Be Tailing Earth on Its Orbit Around the Sun

Researchers suspect the fragment may have been debris from a cratering event on the lunar surface

A man shopping at a garage sale found this moon rock from the Apollo 17 mission in 1972. 

 

Florida Man Discovers Moon Rock at Garage Sale

Mounted on a wooden plaque, the lunar nugget had been a gift to the people of Louisiana from NASA

Michael Collins' NASA astronaut portrait.

Smithsonian Voices

Remembering Michael Collins

As the third director of the National Air and Space Museum, the former astronaut campaigned for a museum on the Mall in time for the nation’s bicentennial

The lunar module Eagle, carrying Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, ascends back up to the command module Columbia with Michael Collins. It is often said that Michael Collins is the only human, living or dead, who is not in this photograph.

Future of Space Exploration

Apollo 11 Astronaut Michael Collins on the Past and Future of Space Exploration

On the occasion of the lunar landing's 50th anniversary, we spoke to the former director of the National Air and Space Museum

Alan Shepard, who was both an astronaut and a golf lover, said he got the idea while training for his Apollo 14 mission. “I thought: What a neat place to whack a golf ball.”

When Astronaut Alan Shepard Hit the Golf Shot Heard 'Round the World

“The Moon is one big sand trap,” the astronaut said after he brought the game to a new frontier

On December 21, 1968, Apollo 8 launched from Kennedy Space Center at 7:51 a.m. EST with Frank Borman in command. His crew became the first humans to ride the mighty Saturn V rocket, breaking the bonds of Earth’s physical pull and entering the gravitational field of another celestial body.

How Apollo 8 Delivered Christmas Eve Peace and Understanding to the World

In a new book, Smithsonian curator Teasel Muir-Harmony examines the geopolitics during NASA’s space flight program

The only photograph of Neil Armstrong on the moon resurfaced in the 1980s after years of obscurity.

You Could Own the First Space Selfie, Only Photo of Neil Armstrong on the Moon

Online Christie's sale features 2,400 photographs from "the golden age of space exploration"

On April 17, 1970, the parachutes carrying the Apollo 13 spacecraft and its crew cleared the clouds and the world breathed a collective sigh of relief.

How the Crew of the Damaged Apollo 13 Came Home

Using the lunar module as a lifeboat and employing techniques never before considered, the astronauts' ordeal ended triumphantly

The EVA of Astronauts James Irwin, or Apollo XV EVA, Pierre Mion.

I Was Among the Lucky Few to Walk in Space

On July 31, 1971, Al Worden performed the first deep-space extra-vehicular activity. "No one in all of history" saw what he saw that day

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Neil Armstrong’s Spacesuit Was Made by a Bra Manufacturer

This wearable spacecraft let humans take one giant leap away from Earth

3-D model of Head of Amenhotep III on Sketchfab

Education During Coronavirus

You Can Now Download 1,700 Free 3-D Cultural Heritage Models

A new Sketchfab collection brings models of fossils, artwork and more into the public domain

Harrison Schmitt, Apollo 17 astronaut and geologist, collecting samples of lunar soil in 1972. Along with Eugene Cernan, Schmitt collected about 245 pounds of material for return to Earth.

In a Single Grain of Moon Dust, 'Millions of Years' of Lunar History

Researchers can now analyze precious samples of lunar rock atom by atom

Presenting Smithsonian magazine's top ten stories of 2019

Our Top Ten Stories of 2019

From a 16-million-year-old tree to Confederate soldiers’ diaries, voracious snakes and England’s warrior king, these were the most-read stories of 2019

Students and teachers can download 3-D print-ready files of the Tyrannosaurus rex and Triceratops skulls.

Holiday Gift Guide

Ten Smithsonian Artifacts You Can 3-D Print

The list includes Neil Armstrong’s spacesuit, an Abraham Lincoln life mask and a coral skeleton

The recently opened Apollo moon sample.

Trending Today

NASA Opens Pristine Tube of Moon Dust From the Apollo Missions

Studying the lunar material will help scientists understand the best way to analyze new samples from future missions to the moon

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