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Is planet Earth unique in the Universe?

Astronauts of Apollo 11 will start in mid-July their incredible moon journey.
The first men in history to walk on another celestial body!
What will they find?
What mysteries of the universe will this expedition discover?


IN 70 years man has leaped from the horse and buggy to the threshold of interplanetary space travel. From Orville Wright to Eugene Cernan in a single generation. From the humorous wheeze of the Stanley Steamer to the paralyzing roar of Apollo 10.


And Now — Apollo 11

On the eve of Apollo 11, a world of heart transplants, computers, affluence, genocide, and topless waitresses, a world of wars and riots pauses awestruck in its mad dash for "progress," somehow aware that a history-shattering event is about to happen.

Man is about to take his first infant step on the alien surface of the moon.

If all goes as scheduled in late July, 1969, Neil Armstrong, Col. Edwin Aldrin, Jr., and Lt. Col. Michael Collins will ride their Command Module with its piggy-backed Landing Module into moon orbit. Collins will remain aboard the Command Module in lunar orbit while Armstrong and Aldrin "fly" their spidery LM (Lunar Module) to the prearranged landing site.

Then the often-simulated but never-accomplished feat of landing safely on the moon will be undertaken. This event successfully accomplished, a 22-hour visit to the lunar surface will begin. The two earth beings will step outside their Lunar Module and spend two of those 22 awesome hours personally examining the foreboding surface of the moon; taking pictures, gathering samples, setting up instruments to record lunar conditions.

Returning to their LM they will abandon their descent stage, fire their ascent rockets — lifting from the lunar surface to rendezvous with the Command Module and a triumphant return to earth.

For the first time human beings will set foot on a celestial body other than the earth.

Fantastic, phenomenal, foreboding! What will the earthmen find?

Will the astronauts find the answers man has sought throughout all his history? The mystery of the origin of life? The origins of the celestial bodies? Is there — or was there ever — other intelligent life out there?


On Beyond

Beyond the moon lie the other planets of our solar system: Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, and others. If man is successful in reaching the moon, his infant steps will get stronger. His longer, surer strides will perhaps take him to Mars and beyond. That is, providing his launching pad — Earth — can keep from being blasted into ruin by still unsolved terrestrial problems, while he attempts to solve those of outer space.

The history-old mysteries of the origin of matter, the origin of our solar system and the origin of man are STILL MYSTERIES TO MEN. Notwithstanding the many popular theories — including evolution and the "big-bang" theory of the origin of the universe — man still doesn't know. After all, considering this tiny dust-like speck called earth compared to the unfathomable scope of the uncountable galaxies, man really hasn't seen very much yet — has he? It's like a tiny amoeba in a drop of stagnant water on a blade of swamp grass solving the geography of earth from his vantage point.


How Big Is Measureless?

Few people really understand the relationship of earth to the space and matter around us.

Earth is one planet in a solar system of 8 other planets revolving around our sun or star. Our sun is one of scores of billions of other suns in a great cluster called the Milky Way Galaxy.

The earth is about ninety million miles from our sun or about the distance light will travel in 8 minutes traveling at 186,000 miles per SECOND. The most distant planet of our solar system, Pluto, is three billion six hundred and seventy million miles distant or the distance light will travel in 5½ HOURS.

The nearest other sun or star in the Milky Way Galaxy is Alpha Centauri A which is 4.3 light YEARS away or the distance light will travel at 186,000 miles per second in 4.3 years. That distance is so vast as to be unreal to us.

But the star cluster we belong to — the Milky Way Galaxy — is thought to be ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND LIGHT YEARS across — the distance light will travel in 100,000 years at 186,000 miles per SECOND — an utterly unfathomable distance!

Yet, our Galaxy is related to several other "nearby" galaxies forming a galaxy cluster. Intergalactic distances of MILLIONS of light years exist in this relationship. Yet, telescopic examination into the distance far beyond these reveals other galaxies and systems of galaxies numberless in quantity — and man has only viewed a minute distance into ENDLESS space.

Against the backdrop of measureless space, man's journey to the moon 250,000 miles away pales appreciably. Certainly the limited knowledge we have of space and matter should tell us something — man can never explore the limitless reaches of space.

Even if we could achieve the speed of light — 186,000 miles per second — a spaceship manned by mortal beings limited to a useful lifespan of less than 100 years could not go far, even if we could sustain our life support systems that long.


Other Planets Circling Other Suns?

Although men have never seen them, scientists have speculated on the existence of planets revolving around other suns in our Milky Way Galaxy. Be this true, they theorize, perhaps one of those planets just might have intelligent life more advanced than our own. Since earthlings don't have the answers, scientists reason, maybe they do — if they're out there!

One noted space scientist said: "Are there other intelligences in the universe? Is the Galaxy filled with civilized worlds, diverse and unimaginable, each flourishing with its own commerce and culture, befitting its separate circumstances? Or can it be that we are ALONE IN THE UNIVERSE [emphasis added], that by some poignant and unfathomable joke, ours is the ONLY civilization extant?"

Just what are the chances?

Few realize the unique nature of our earth and our sun. Few realize the fantastic odds against duplicating the life compatibility parameters of our earth.

Few realize the exacting narrow limits of conditions that would permit even the most simple of life forms to exist elsewhere in the universe.

First, a planet must lie at the proper distance from its sun — too far and life will freeze; too near and life will be destroyed by high temperatures.

This sun must also produce stable, constant radiation and luminosity. Many stars fluctuate greatly.

This sun must also be sufficiently distant from other suns as to hold a planet in a correct orbital pattern around itself. A planet trapped in a multi-star orbital pattern — revolving around more than one sun — would almost surely experience wide-ranging solar variations, nullifying life. Yet, HALF of the stars in the Milky Way Galaxy to which we belong are in multiple-star relationships.

Next, the planet must rotate at just the right speed for its size and distance from its sun. Too slow and life would alternately freeze and burn.

Another condition that must be satisfied is the relation of the planet's mass to the chemical composition of its atmosphere. If a planet is not of proper size, its weak gravitational pull (in case the planet is too small) will allow vital atmospheric atoms required to sustain life to escape into space. A planet too near its sun will also tend to boil off its atmosphere into space.

There must be a correct atmospheric composition or else water or liquid cannot exist to support life. Only within a HAIRLINE BAND of the immense temperature spectrum of the universe can water manifest itself as a liquid.

This atmosphere must also be thick enough to protect the planet from bombardment by meteors. The atmosphere must also contain an ozone belt to protect life from death-dealing rays from its sun.

We are describing only the very basic conditions required for the most SIMPLE forms of life to exist. More complex life forms require far more exacting conditions. The earth has all these requirements plus millions more in perfect harmony to sustain life in all its wondrous forms.


By Contrast: Mars

The remarkable picture story relayed by Mariner 4 from the battered surface of Mars in July 1965 emphasized one graphic truth — the incredible uniqueness of the planet Earth among its peers in its own solar system.

The haunting hope that the photos of Mars would reveal some form of life, perhaps evidence of a long-since-per-fished advanced society which built canals and cities slowly faded into impossibility.

As the photos came in, one by one, the Martian landscape revealed a crater-marked wasteland apparently unchanged by any water erosion. The lack of erosion on Mars means that no wind or water action has changed or affected Mars' surface for an untold number of years — scientists assume perhaps two to five BILLION YEARS.

No oceans, no streams, no pattern of watercourses like we might see on earth — even in our deserts. No sign there had ever been any seas — EVER. No volcanic evidence, no foliage, no cloud cover, no movement — NOTHING. Only a wasteland, pock-marked with the evidence of constant meteoric bombardment.

Even the hope that in some remote and sheltered depressions some moisture might collect to sustain some form of life dimmed. Mariner IV's radio transmissions through the Martian atmosphere revealed an atmosphere so attenuated as to approximate a partial vacuum. The Martian atmospheric pressure is only 1 to 2 percent of what we experience here on earth. Even if water did collect in damp recesses, it would almost instantly disappear through "flash distillation."

Even though some hope is still held for some microscopic form of hardy life on Mars — and upcoming Mariner 6 and 7 missions should provide additional technical information — the undeniable truth is still apparent — MARS IS A DEAD PLANET! Mars is a void and a wasteland — there is NO LIFE THERE.