The canonical megaprojects had relatively modest budgets

Written 2022-02-01

The spending on the Manhattan and Apollo projects was relatively small, compared to modern spending for large tech companies:


Manhattan Project

Total cost: $23B spent over seven years (in 2020 dollars, originally $2B)


130,000 people

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Apollo Project

Total cost: $158B spent over 11 years (in 2020 dollars, originally $25.4B)

1961-1972 At its peak, the Apollo program employed 400,000 people and required the support of over 20,000 industrial firms and universities.

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Tech Companies


$141.3B annual operating expenses (2020)

150,028 employees


$71.34B annual operating expenses (2020)