The 50th anniversary of humanity's second moon-landing mission is today (Nov. 14), and NASA has several livestreamed events celebrating the milestone. You can catch all broadcasts online and on NASA Television.
Apollo 12 launched 50 years ago today for a landing on the moon's Ocean of Storms four days later. The landing crew of Pete Conrad and Alan Bean made the first pinpoint landing on the moon, arriving within walking distance of the robotic Surveyor 3 spacecraft, which landed on the moon in 1967. Fellow crew member Dick Gordon remained in orbit, taking photos of the moon's surface. Conrad and Bean brought some pieces of the Surveyor 3 lander back to Earth, along with some 75 lbs. (34 kilograms) of moon rocks, according to NASA.
Unlike with events surrounding the Apollo 11 anniversary in July, none of the Apollo 12 crew members are still alive to celebrate their own milestone today. Conrad died in 1999, Gordon died in 2017 and Bean died in 2018.
NASA's Apollo 12 anniversary extravaganza kicks off with rebroadcast launch coverage of Apollo 12 at 11 a.m. EST (1600 GMT).
Two International Space Station astronauts, Christina Koch and Jessica Meir, will then be interviewed live on NASA TV at 1:25 p.m. EST (1825 GMT). While the topic of that interview has not been released yet, it's very possible these NASA astronauts will mention the anniversary.
In between the special Apollo 12 broadcasts, U.S. vice president Mike Pence is expected to make remarks at NASA's Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley, California at 11:45 a.m. local time (2:45 p.m. EST or 1945 GMT). He is visiting as part of a larger tour focusing on NASA's future human program for moon missions, called Artemis, NASA said in a statement. Pence may mention the Apollo 12 anniversary in his remarks, which are supposed to address Ames' role in the Artemis program. The Trump administration wants NASA to land the next humans on the moon in 2024, including the first woman.
The evening shows on NASA TV will have 50th anniversary specials.
At 8 p.m. EST (0100 GMT Friday, Nov. 15), the channel will premiere a new special. It includes "highlights from the Apollo 12 mission, prelaunch activities, crew news conferences and President [Richard] Nixon's address," NASA said in a description of the show. Then at 10 p.m. EST (0300 GMT Friday, Nov. 15), NASA TV will air another documentary called "Apollo 12 — Pinpoint For Science."
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Elizabeth Howell (she/her), Ph.D., is a staff writer in the spaceflight channel since 2022 covering diversity, education and gaming as well. She was contributing writer for Space.com for 10 years before joining full-time. Elizabeth's reporting includes multiple exclusives with the White House and Office of the Vice-President of the United States, an exclusive conversation with aspiring space tourist (and NSYNC bassist) Lance Bass, speaking several times with the International Space Station, witnessing five human spaceflight launches on two continents, flying parabolic, working inside a spacesuit, and participating in a simulated Mars mission. Her latest book, "Why Am I Taller?", is co-written with astronaut Dave Williams. Elizabeth holds a Ph.D. and M.Sc. in Space Studies from the University of North Dakota, a Bachelor of Journalism from Canada's Carleton University and a Bachelor of History from Canada's Athabasca University. Elizabeth is also a post-secondary instructor in communications and science at several institutions since 2015; her experience includes developing and teaching an astronomy course at Canada's Algonquin College (with Indigenous content as well) to more than 1,000 students since 2020. Elizabeth first got interested in space after watching the movie Apollo 13 in 1996, and still wants to be an astronaut someday. Mastodon: https://qoto.org/@howellspace