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Apollo 11 Long Distance Phone Call
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Nixon Phone Call to Apollo 11 - RF Cafe Cool Video"Can you hear me now?" is a trademark question brilliantly conceived of by Verizon and repeated ad nauseam by its geeky repair guy in TV commercials. 30 years earlier, NASA outdid them big-time. On July 20, 1969, the as yet unbroken long distance phone call record was set by President Nixon from the Oval Office. Per the president's daily diary, "The President held an interplanetary conversation with Apollo 11 Astronauts, Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin on the Moon." Get that? Interplanetary! I am not sure where the moon was in relation to the Oval Office, but the distance could have been anywhere from about 226 kmiles to 257 kmiles. If you listen closely, you can hear the 2.5-second echo caused by the round-trip radio First Ever "Can You Hear Me Now?" Commercial - RF Cafe Cool Videosignal propagation time (note "to join" at 1:18, then echo at 1:20). Do not be tempted, as some commenters on the video did, to claim the Moon call does not count because a radio was required between the desk phone and Eagle (re-designated Tranquility Base while on the surface); that is how your cellphone works. From the Oval Office to Tranquility Base - what an accomplishment! The only way to beat that record would be to send a human out beyond the orbit of the moon, which is not going to happen for a long, long time... unless China decides to do so.

Longest Distance Phone Call Ever Made - From the Oval Office to the Moon

Very First Verizon Advertisement with the "Can You Hear Me Now?" Guy

Posted August 2, 2011

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