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WASHINGTON — Neil Armstrong's Apollo 11 spacesuit has returned to display, 13 years after the Smithsonian removed it from exhibit and 50 years to the day — and nearly the very minute — after it lifted off on the historic first moon landing mission.
The Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C., revealed the Apollo 11 astronaut's A7L pressure garment, helmet assembly and gloves at 9 a.m. EDT (1300 GMT) Tuesday (July 16), just 32 minutes shy of the 50th anniversary of its Saturn V rocket launch. U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine and Ellen Stofan, director of the National Air and Space Museum, presided over a ceremony that led up to them being joined by Rick Armstrong, Neil Armstrong's son, for the unveiling of the spacesuit's exhibit.
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"Neil Armstrong's spacesuit, the suit that allowed a human to walk on the surface of the moon for the first time, is one of the most iconic artifacts in our collection because of the historical feat Armstrong achieved," said Stofan.
The spacesuit is now available for the public to see as part of a temporary display near the 1903 Wright Flyer, the first aircraft to achieve powered flight, on the second floor of the museum on the National Mall. Its future home, the permanent "Destination Moon" gallery, is slated to be complete in 2022.
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Apollo 11 Moon Landing Giveaway with Simulation Curriculum & Celestron!
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NASA transferred Armstrong's spacesuit to the Smithsonian in 1971 following its visit to all 50 states as part of a tour that also featured the Apollo 11 command module, Columbia. Five years later, it debuted on exhibit in the National Air and Space Museum's now-former Apollo to the Moon gallery for 30 years. It was taken off display in 2006, initially only to inspect its condition...
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