Can you imagine spending the holidays with this view? It was done 50 years ago by astronauts: Frank Borman, James A. Lovell, and William A. Anders during the Apollo 8 mission.
To re-live (or experience for the first time) click here.
NASA: Precisely on time on Dec. 24, 1968, Mission Control lost contact with Apollo 8 and its crew of Frank Borman, James A. Lovell, and William A. Anders. And everyone at NASA and onboard Apollo 8 was happy about that. It meant that the spacecraft and crew were on a precise trajectory to swing behind the Moon, and if all went well, to fire the Service Module’s Service Propulsion System (SPS) engine to slow their velocity just enough to allow the Moon’s gravitational field to capture them. With a successful Lunar Orbit Insertion (LOI) burn, they would become the first crewed spacecraft in lunar orbit, and Mission Control would regain the signal after 32 minutes and 37 seconds. If it didn’t fire at all, they would regain the signal in 22 minutes and it meant Apollo 8 was heading back to Earth. And of course, a variety of engine malfunctions could result in different signal reacquisition times.
While NASA ...