HAMPTON, Va. — This Saturday, July 20, marks half a century since Neil Armstrong took one small step for man and one giant leap for mankind.

The first moon landing was one of the most significant days for science and space exploration.

Most of the communication and complex mathematical decisions were made in the Apollo 11 control center in Houston.

A recent $8.5-million project recreated every detail inside the control center.

But getting the eagle to land safely never would have happened without work done right here in Hampton Roads.

The NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton played a critical role in testing and training for the mission.

The lunar landing research facility is what Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin used to practice their descent to the surface of the moon.

Fast forward to today and the U.S. has its sights set on a return to the moon.

Still, in its early stages, the Artemis mission will send humans back to the moon in 2024 - the first time since 1972.

Local scientists and engineers at NASA Langley will, once again, play a big part in that mission.

More Apollo 11 Anniversary Coverage: