40 years of Moon landing

July 21 (IST) we celebrate the 40th year of the the unusual milestone in scientific endeavor – landing on the Moon surface by human being. As part of the Apollo 11 project of NASA, two American astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin set their foot on the lunar surface on this day in 1969.

For many of us it is also a special day; we all remember vividly as college students hearing the extra-ordinary Radio broadcast of the famous statement “One small step for man; a giant leap for mankind” live from the Moon that is quarter million kilometers away; at our age when I was just 17, that moment made deep impressions on us.

I went to Purdue University in 1976; Neil Armstrong is an alumnus of Purdue University; more interestingly, I was at the School of Industrial Engineering that was physically located in Grissom Hall (along with Aeronautical Engineering School) – named after another astronaut Grissom!

I joined IIT Kanpur in 1979; I was pleasantly surprised to find a sample of Moon soil carefully kept and displayed in the IIT Kanpur Library (as part of Indo US scientific exchange)

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