The National Aeronautics And Space Administration Essay

725 Words 3 Pages
By 1961, the Cold War was well underway, and up until this point, the Soviet Union had greatly surpassed the United States in the space race. America’s space program, called the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), was waning in comparison to the space program in the USSR. The successes of the artificial satellite Sputnik 1 in 1957 and the launching of Yuri Gagarin into space in 1967 had greatly embarrassed the United States. This embarrassment prompted President Kennedy to become a man on a mission to propose something bold, something monumental, and something that could change the trajectory of the nation. On May 25, 1961, he announced his goal, one that many perceived to be overly ambitious and most likely impossible, of safely landing a man on the moon and bring him him home by the end of the decade. His mission led to the formation of the famous Apollo program (also known as Project Apollo). Not only did the year of 1964 mark a critical turning point in the Cold War space race with the successes of the Ranger 7 space probe and mariner 4 spacecraft, it also played an integral role in setting Neil Armstrong on a path towards greatness. The creation of NASA was authorized by president Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1958 following the successful launch of Sputnik 1, and the Ranger program was one of NASA’s early projects. In a special message to congress, President Kennedy asserted his belief that landing a man on the moon would be the most beneficial space…

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