SpaceX recently tweeted out an image of the Starman which was last seen leaving Earth and finally made its very first close approach with Mars! The distance was only 0.05 astronomical units or about under 5 million miles away from the known Red Planet. The post was then retweeted by a certain Buzz Aldrin, although not as popularly known as Niel Armstrong, was actually with him on Apollo 11 and was with him taking the first steps on the moon.

Who is Buzz Aldrin and what did he do?

Buzz Aldrin was actually born as Edwin Eugene Aldrin Jr. back in JAnuary 20, 1930 and is known as an American engineer, fighter pilot, and also as an astronaut. Aldrin made a total of three different spacewalks as the pilot of the previous 1966 Gemini 12 mission, and also as the lunar module pilot of the previous and more popular 1969 Apollo 11 mission. Both him and the mission commander everyone knows, Neil Armstrong, were both the first two humans ever to land on the Moon.

The former astronaut started off by earning a Sc.D. degree specifically in astronautics from the known Massachusetts Institute of Technology where Aldrin was selected to be a member of NASA's Astronaut Group 3. This actually made him the very first astronaut to ever hold a doctoral degree. Even his doctoral thesis was actually called Line-of-Sight Guidance Techniques for Manned Orbital Rendezvous, which is pretty amazing to some and has earned him a nickname from his fellow astronauts, "Dr. Rendezvous."

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Buzz Aldrin's trip to the moon

The initial space flight took place in 1966 on the Gemini 12 where he actually spent over five hours doing extravehicular activity. Just three years later, Buzz Aldrin once again set foot on the Moon itself at 3:15:16 of July 21, 1969. This was just nineteen minutes right after Neil Armstrong actually first touched the Moon's surface, while the ship's command module pilot known as Michael Collins still remained in lunar orbit.

Upon his exit from NASA back in 1971, Aldrin also became the Commandant of the known US Air Force Test Pilot School. He then retired from the United States Air Force back in 1972 after serving for 21 years. He has two autobiographies namely Magnificent Desolation back in 2009 and a much older Return to Earth in 1973. These autobiographies recount his personal struggle dealing with clinical depression as well as alcoholism over the years after his exit from NASA.

Buzz Aldrin then continued to be an advocate for general space exploration, particularly the whole human mission to Mars. He even developed the known Aldrin cycler which is a special spacecraft trajectory that helps make trips to Mars even more efficient.

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Written by Urian Buenconsejo

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