Amazon founder and CEO, Jeff Bezos, has confirmed that he and his team have recovered one of the Apollo 11’s lost F-1 engines. The historic engines were resting at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean for the last 40 years. One of the issues that Bezos’ team faces was properly confirming the F-1s, the serial numbers and markings of the engines were all but removed from exposure to the salt and currents of the Atlantic Ocean.
For the last few months Bezo’s team have been studying the artifacts, after using special lens filters and a black light, four digits — 2044 — confirmed that the artifacts were genuine. This confirmed one of the most important artifacts from space exploration history that is still on our planet.
Today is the eve of the 44th anniversary of Neil Armstrong’s first step on the moon, and a perfect day for such an announcement. The 2044 number is the Rocketdyne serial number that NASA confirmed is the serial number for the F-1 Engine #5 from Apollo 11. Bezos found “Unit No 2044” was stamped into the metal surface of the artifact.
The astronauts that used Apollo 11, left the engines behind on the way to the moon (as planned) they have been at the bottom of the Atlantic ever since. Bezos personally funded this dig, though he will of course donate the engines to NASA for study.