The intention of the Apollo program was to land American astronauts on the Moon and return them safely to Earth. There were several aspects to the program.
The Apollo configuration consisted of the Saturn V launch vehicle that sent a combined Command module and Lunar Module on its way to the Moon. Once there two of the astronauts descended to the Moon's surface in the Lunar Module while one astronaut remained in the Command module in orbit. Once finished on the Moon the two astronauts returned to the Command Module for the journey home.
There were initial unmanned test missions to perfect the Saturn launch system. Apollos 7 and 9 were Earth orbiting missions to test the command and lunar module systems. Apollos 8 and 10 completed an orbit of the Moon to test the systems, return photographs and gain experience of travelling to the Moon and back. Finally Apollo's 11,12,13,14,15,16,and 17 were to land on the Moon. Apollo 13 did not complete its full mission due to a serious malfunction on the way there but it did bring back photographs.
On January 27 1967 the Apollo 1 mission suffered a catastrophic fire during a preflight test that sadly killed all three crew members: Gus Grissom, Ed White, and Roger Chaffee in the command module.
|Apollo Mission||Launch Date||Landing Date||Landing Site|
|11||16 Jul 1969||20 Jul 1969||Mare Tranquilities|
|12||14 Nov 1969||19 Nov 1969||Oceanus Procellarum|
|13||11 Apr 1970||--||Cancelled|
|14||31 Jan 1971||05 Feb 1971||Fra Mauro|
|15||26 Jul 1971||30 Jul 1971||Hadley Rille|
|16||16 Apr 1972||20 Apr 1972||Descartes|
|17||07 Dec 1972||11 Dec 1972||Taurus-L|