On Feb. 26, 1966, AS-201, the first Saturn IB rocket, lifted off from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center. Designed and developed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, the AS-201 mission was an uncrewed suborbital flight to test the Saturn IB and the Apollo Command and Service modules. The objectives of the flight were to verify the structural integrity, launch loads, stage separation and operation of subsystems of the Saturn 1B, and evaluate the Apollo spacecraft subsystems, heatshield and mission support facilities.
Today, NASA aims to return to the Moon by 2024 with our Artemis Program, which will land American astronauts, including the first woman and the next man, on the Moon. Through the agency’s Artemis lunar exploration program, we will use innovative new technologies and systems to explore more of the Moon than ever before. We will collaborate with our commercial and international partners to establish sustainable missions by 2028. And then we will use what we learn on and around the Moon to take the next giant leap – sending astronauts to Mars.
Image Credit: NASA