What tech would the Apollo 11 mission have today?

One small step for man, one giant leap for technology. 

22nd July 2009
What tech would the Apollo 11 mission have today? (NASA)

Asked by: Doug Butcher, Westport

The 1969 Apollo 11 mission (above) was the first to land men on the Moon. Since then, the most obvious advances have been in computing and electronics (especially in reducing size).

The Apollo Guidance Computer had RAM of 4KB, a 32KB hard disk. It was fairly compact for its time, measuring 60cm x 30cm x 15cm, but weighed around 30kg. Current computers are much lighter, at least 1000 times as fast and have storage capacities that are millions of times those achievable in 1969.

Other advances have been in food, which has improved considerably, and in clothing, with lighter, more flexible space suits. Going to the toilet in space has also become more comfortable.

 


Get more fascinating Q&As from BBC Focus magazine by following @sciencefocusQA