Last year, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced that he would be hiring a team of explorers to locate the remains of the Apollo 11 rocket and recover them from the ocean floor. Almost an exact year later, Bezos has announced that the Apollo 11 rockets have indeed been recovered and are in the process of making their way back to land where they’ll be put on display.
The F-1 engines, as they’re called, came off of the famous Saturn V rocket that took Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin to the moon. It was the mission that allowed humans to step foot on the moon for the first time on July 20, 1969. The rockets have been lying on the bottom of the ocean for more than 40 years, and Bezos and his team have recovered two out of the five engines.
However, Bezos is not 100% sure that the engines are, in fact, from Apollo 11, since the corrosion of the serial numbers will make it difficult to verify, but there’s certainly confidence that the recovered engines are from Apollo 11. Bezos wants to display the engines at the Museum of Flight in Seattle, although NASA may be involved in the decision on where they will ultimately be displayed.
The Saturn V is still the largest and most powerful rocket that was ever built in the US, and each engine is almost 20 feet tall and 13 feet wide. Each engine also weighs over 17,500 pounds. The massive size of the engines produced quite the thrust — around 7.7 million pounds of thrust to be exact, and it had a top speed of over 6,000 mph.