Amazing image of the penultimate lunar landing blasting off

We take a look at the second-to-last mission to the Moon.


The launch of Apollo 16

On 16 April 1972 astronauts John Young, Thomas Mattingly II and Charles Duke Junior took to the skies inside Apollo 16 atop the Saturn V rocket pictured here from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, USA. Following a five-day journey Young and Duke touched down on the moon in the early hours of 21 April, spending almost three days on the lunar surface before returning to Earth.

Apollo 16 was the fifth of six successful US missions to the moon, with Apollo 13 being the only one that failed to perform a lunar landing as intended. It was the only mission to touch down in the highlands of the moon, where samples from what were thought to be previously volcanic regions were taken, although this was later proved incorrect when studying the specimens returned from the surface. Young and Duke spent 20 hours and 14 minutes outside of the Lunar Module on the surface of the moon during their mission, collecting a variety of samples and driving the Lunar Roving Vehicle (LRV) a cumulative total of 16.6 miles (26.7 km).

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