Buzz Aldrin

(b. 1930) American astronaut

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(1930– )

A US astronaut who, with Neil Armstrong, landed on the Moon on 20 July 1969 during the Apollo 11 mission, becoming the second person to set foot on the Moon.

During the Gemini 12 flight with James Lovell in 1966, Aldrin spent 5.5 hours in outer space without any ill effects. His ‘walk’ in space set a record for extravehicular activity and proved that people could work outside an orbiting vehicle. He resigned from NASA in 1971, having spent 289 hours and 53 minutes in space.

Born at Montclair, New Jersey, Aldrin graduated from the US Military Academy at West Point, New York State, and flew for the US Air Force during the Korean War (1950–3) and later in West Germany. He received a Doctor of Science degree (ScD) from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1963. In 1972 he resigned from the air force to found Research and Engineering Consultants. He also founded ShareSpace, a non-profit organization supporting space travel for the public. His books include (with Wayne Warga) Return to Earth (1975) and the science-fiction novel (with John Barnes) Encounter with Tiber (1996).

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics.

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