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Recollections of the Space Race

Our Place in Space logoThis lecture is part of the Ritter Library “Our Place in Space: The Ongoing Adventures of Humanity Among the Stars” Lecture Series.

Presented by Thomas Benson, retired NASA aerospace engineer.

NASA recently announced that a crew of four astronauts will fly a spacecraft from Earth to the moon in November 2024, the first crewed mission to the vicinity of the moon in more than 50 years.

In the 1960s, a "space race" was conducted between the United States and the Soviet Union to determine who would be the first to set foot on the moon. To provide some perspective on the current mission, Benson will discuss the previous lunar exploration project. 

He will also look at the decisions that led to the race, some of the important missions and milestones that determined the winner and the final results of this competitive approach to exploration.

About Thomas Benson

Benson is a retired aerospace engineer from the NASA Glenn Research Center. He was a 22-year-old college student when Neil Armstrong took his historic "one small step" on the moon. He has an extensive library of books on the early space program and a collection of spacecraft models from that time which will be available for viewing.

Event is free and open to the public.
Registration required.
Use link under "DETAILS" at right

About "Our Place in Space"

The Earth is infinitesimal in the vastness of the cosmos: one planet amidst the unfathomable dimensions of the universe. This year’s Ritter Library series explores the progress we’ve made in understanding our cosmic neighborhood.

  • The first steps taken to reach the stars
  • Human firsts in space exploration
  • Robotics and their role
  • The current state of space exploration
  • Future aspirations

Join us as we explore Our Place in Space.