Picture of Apollo 8 spacecraft
Powered by the Saturn V rocket, later used by Apollo 11, Apollo 8 was launched on Dec. 21, 1968. Astronauts Frank Borman, James Lovell, Jr., and William Anders became the first humans to travel to the Moon and see its farside, successfully accomplishing all their mission objectives during their six days in space.
On Christmas Eve, Apollo 8 completed 10 orbits around the Moon returning live television pictures back to our planet. Over half a billion people watched as Earth rose on the Moon's horizon, realizing the limitless possibilities of space exploration.
Apollo 8 provided astronauts with more experience in space travel, and brought us one step closer to the Apollo program's objective of landing humans safely on the Moon.
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