It was on this day 47 years ago that Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stepped out of the Apollo 11 spacecraft and on to the moon’s surface, a step Armstrong described as a giant leap for mankind. And on Wednesday, space enthusiasts can literally own a piece of that history, if they can afford it, that is.
Bonhams International Auctioneers is holding an auction in New York on July 20 of rare space artifacts, including some from the Apollo 11 flight and the Russian Soyuz missions. “An Apollo 11 navigational chart flown to the lunar surface is a highlight of the sale. Originally from the personal collection of Buzz Aldrin, the chart maps the first manned lunar descent taken by Aldrin and Neil Armstrong on board the Lunar Module Eagle,” a release from Bonhams said.
Another prize item on sale is a space suit worn by flight engineer Don Pettit during his return to Earth from the International Space Station, where he spent five-and-a-half months as a member of Expedition 6. “Developed in 1973-79, the suit is still worn by everyone who flies on the Soyuz spacecraft,” Bonhams said.
A Gemini 133P Control Trainer from NASA’s 1961-1966 human spaceflight program, before the Apollo missions, is also on offer. There is also a full scale test model of the Sputnik-1 satellite that was made in 1957 to test electromagnetic compatibility and interference, before the launch of the actual satellite.
Various other items, including spacecraft models, robots that have been on the moon’s surface, spacecraft equipment and even a Russian spy satellite, will also go under the hammer Wednesday.
The auction starts at 1 p.m. EDT and the artifacts on sale can be seen at the auction house by the general public before the auction starts, between 10 a.m. and noon.