The Mars cycler is a type of spacecraft that travels between Earth and Mars regularly. An example of a Mars cycler is the Aldrin cycler. It is called the Aldrin cycler because of Buzz Aldrin. But how did this famous astronaut get a spacecraft to be named after him?
Buzz Aldrin, devised an orbital system known as “Mars Cycling”. This would allow spacecraft to fly between Earth and Mars indefinitely with only a single initial boost. He basically calculated the technique for it and this is why the cycler is named after him.
Who is Buzz Aldrin?
Edwin Eugene Buzz Aldrin is an American astronaut who was the second person to walk on the Moon. He was born on January 20, 1930, in Montclair, New Jersey. He changed his name to Buzz Aldrin in 1988 and made it his legal name. It was his sister who gave him the moniker Buzz when he was a kid since she would mispronounce the word brother and call him buzzer instead.
Aldrin did really well in school. He maintained an A average all while participating in extra-curricular activities. He attended the Severn Schol in 1946 as per the request of his father, but he had other ideas about his career. He was not a fan of the Navy and suffered from seasickness. He eventually entered West Point in 1947 and graduated in 1951 with a degree in mechanical engineering.
On November 11, 1966, he embarked on the four-day Gemini 12 journey with James A. Lovell, Jr. Aldrin’s three spacewalks lasted 5 1/2 hours, demonstrating that humans can function efficiently in the vacuum of space.
By July 16, 1969, Aldrin, Neil A. Armstrong, and Michael Collins launched Apollo 11 to the Moon. Armstrong and Aldrin landed at the edge of Mare Tranquillitatis four days later. They ended their lunar surface excursion after about two hours of collecting rock samples, taking photographs, and setting up scientific equipment for tests. (Souce: The Montclair Times)
Was Buzz Aldrin the Inspiration for Toy Story’s Buzz Lightyear?
Aside from the human and toy stories, Buzz Lightyear’s real-life origin is a clear reference to Buzz Aldrin, one of the most iconic figures in the history of space flight. Buzz Lightyear was even named after Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin.
During a speech at NASA, Aldrin recognized the gesture by pulling out a Buzz Lightyear Action Figure and was greeted by wild applause. The Toy Story 10th Anniversary DVD even includes a clip of this. However, Aldrin did not earn any endorsement money for the use of his first name. (Source: Independent)
Buzz Aldrin’s Life After the Moon Landing
Following the excitement of the moonwalk, Aldrin felt exhausted by NASA’s globetrotting schedule for astronauts. He had spent his career as a fighter pilot and subsequently an astronaut, so transitioning to civilian life was quite challenging. He went in and out of the hospital for two years after the moon landing.
Return To Earth, Aldrin’s 1973 autobiography, detailed his tribulations. In the 1970s, Aldrin served as chairman of the National Association for Mental Health, buoyed by the initial public response to his narrative. In 2009, he returned to the subject in Magnificent Desolation. (Source: The Sunday Times)