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Apollo 8 official mission patch

Apollo 8

Occurred 55 years ago

"Round the moon and back…"

Mission Type

Lunar Landing Preparation


Frank Borman, James Lovell Jr., William Anders


Dec. 21, 1968


Dec. 27, 1968
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Apollo 8: Mission Details

“‘Round the moon and back…”

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Frank Borman


Frank Borman was selected as a NASA Astronaut in the second group in 1962. He was a veteran of the Gemini 7 space orbital rendezvous mission with Gemini 6 before being named as the commander of Apollo 8, the first lunar orbital mission, in 1968.

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Portrait of astronaut Frank Borman with model shuttle
Portrait of astronaut Frank Borman.

More About Apollo 8

Read more about the Apollo 8 mission and crew.

Apollo 8: Christmas at the Moon

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Christmas Eve, 1968. As one of the most turbulent, tragic years in American history drew to a close, millions around…


Dec. 27, 1968: Apollo 8 Returns from the Moon

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It was Christmas Day 1968, and after spending 20 hours orbiting the Moon, the Apollo 8 crew of Frank Borman,…


50 Years Ago: Apollo 8 in Lunar Orbit

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Precisely on time on Dec. 24, 1968, Mission Control lost contact with Apollo 8 and its crew of Frank Borman,…


Part 5: Apollo 8 and Beyond – The Next Epoch

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Christmas morning of 1968, the Apollo 8 crew fired its service module engines to propel them out of lunar orbit…


50 Years Ago: Apollo 8, You are Go for TLI!

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In the early morning of Dec. 21, 1968, at Kennedy Space Center’s (KSC) Launch Pad 39A, the five engines of…


Part 4: Apollo 8 – The Return

3 min read

Halfway to the Moon, on Sunday, Dec. 22, 1968, the Apollo 8 crew glimpsed Earth outside their windows from a…

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