Buzz Aldrin is an American engineer and former astronaut famous for being one of the first two humans in history to walk on the surface of the moon. Educated at the US Military Academy at West Point, Buzz graduated third in his class with a B.S. in mechanical engineering and was selected by NASA in 1963.
The docking and rendezvous techniques he devised for spacecraft in Earth and lunar orbit became critical to the success of the Gemini and Apollo programs, and are still used today.
In 1966 on the Gemini 12 orbital mission, Buzz performed the world’s first successful spacewalk, overcoming prior difficulties experienced by Americans and Russians during extra-vehicular activity (EVA), and setting a new EVA record of five and a half hours.
On July 20, 1969, Buzz and Neil Armstrong made their historic Apollo 11 moonwalk, becoming the first two humans to set foot on another world. They spent 21 hours on the lunar surface. An estimated 600 million people – at that time, the world’s largest television audience in history – witnessed this unprecedented heroic endeavour.
Since retiring from NASA and the Air Force, Buzz has remained at the forefront of efforts to ensure America’s continued leadership in human space exploration. He devised a master plan for missions to Mars known as the “Aldrin Mars Cycler” – a spacecraft system with perpetual cycling orbits between Earth and Mars.
As one of the leading space exploration advocates, Buzz continues to chart a course for future space travel and is passionate about inspiring the younger generations of future explorers and innovators. Buzz can bring a unique insight into the technology they used to get there, and how it felt to leave the planet.
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