Moon Landing

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Desideratum

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Ok I am new to this so excuse me if this has already been asked. Can anyone explain with any knowledge why there are no new pictures of the moons surface reflecting the moon landing and eqiupment left on the moon? The only photos we have of the landing, the surface or equipment left on the surface are 40 years old and was provided by the government. Why has no third party or foriegn government been able to photograph the flags or equipment NASA claims to have left of the moon? I find this incredible that we can take pictures of galaxies far far away but we cannot take pictures of the moons surface. A new picture of the equipment, if it is there, would be a front page photo around the world. This makes no sense. If NASA was able to recon the moons surface, 40 years ago with antiquated technology, how come no one can now with assets we have now? Japan sent two satellites to the moon to take HD pictures...but no evidence of the landing has been published. If you think I am a loon, try an internet search and you will find nothing new, only photos from 4 decades ago. Also, the actual film of the landing has somehow been lost at the National Archives. I know there are many who do not believe the it occured, I am one of them. I know there are many who believe what ever the government tells them. But would you not agree that all it takes is a simple picture taken by a third party to settle the matter once and for all? After all, if you assert a fact, like the moon landing, but have no way to prove it in 2009 with all our technology, then the joke is really on you, not those who did not believe it in the first place.
 
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MeteorWayne

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The simple answer is that no earth or spaced based telescope, or any of the spacecraft sent to the moon so far have had sufficient resolution to see these tiny objects. Look at the pictures of the moon taken since then they show craters hundreds of meters wide. The landers are only about a meter square, the flags even smaller. The objects on the moon are simply too small to be observed with the equipment so far.

That situation will be resolved soon, as several of the new lunar spacecraft will be able to barely see some of the material left on the moon.

One thing we know that is there is the laser reflectors that were placed on several flights. They allow is to measure the distance to the moon within an inch.

As for not believeing the moon landing, I don't know what I can say to change your mind. The facts have been well documented, every argumant of the moon hoax crowd has been dismantled, so if you insist on believing that there's probably no scientific fact that will change your mind. If you had been alive during that time and followed every minute of that incredible 3 years, you would have no doubt.

Welcome to Space.com!

Wayne
 
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mr_mark

Guest
Hey, thanks for the question. As someone who was alive in the Apollo years, I can assure you that the program was very real. My personal friend worked on the lunar lem and it's construction. People do not build expensive massive systems, launch them and then pretend to go to the moon. It would be like saving every penny and then buying a race car and then never taking it to the track. All Apollo launches were easily verified by the tracking systems of that day. The LRO which will be launched in a few weeks will be the first Vehicle to take pictures of the lunar landing sites. Hope that helps. We had the technology then to go to the Moon and we have had it since 1969. The reason we have not gone back is political will and big bucks. With big money you can do anything just ask Britney Spears lol.
 
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newtons_laws

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Desideratum Welcome to the forum!
I think Meteor Wayne has given a very good discussion on the difficulties of seeing or photographing remaining Apollo equipment on the lunar surface. As he says you need to consider the angular resolution of the imaging system concerned. As an example, consider that of the Hubble telescope which of course is free from any turbulence interference caused by the Earth's atmosphere. This site:

http://www.coseti.org/9008-065.htm

says its angular resolution is 0.043 arc seconds (there are 60 arc seconds in an arc minute and 60 arc minutes in a degree). If we express this angle in radians (1 radian= 57.29 degrees) it equals 0.043/(3600 x 57.29) = 2.08 x 10 exp-7 radians. Taking the Earth to Moon distance as approx 380,000km, this angular resolution equates to a dimension on the Moon of
(2.08 x 10 exp-7) x (3.8 x 10 exp+8) meters = 79 meters
This is the smallest dimension that can be resolved at the lunar distance with the Hubble optics, so no wonder that Apollo items a few metres in size maximum cannot be seen!
Incidentally the fact that Hubble and other telescopes can record light from stars and galaxies millions of light years away is a different technical aspect relating to sensitivity (how much light is needed for it to be detected). The images of the stars are still points, the angular resolution is too small to resolve them as discs.


= After all, if you assert a fact, like the moon landing, but have no way to prove it in 2009 with all our technology, then the joke is really on you, not those who did not believe it in the first place.
Er - How's about several hundred pounds of moon rock brought back and analysed by independent scientists all round the world?
 
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MeteorWayne

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Regarding the last quote; even technology cannot defeat physics :)
 
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SpaceTas

Guest
As for trying to convince moon landing skeptics and any other of their ilk, I'll use a phrase from another post-thread (sorry I haven't got the name).

"You can't argue with unreasonable doubt !"

If you want to read the explanations for all the Moon hoax contentions see Bad Astronomy, and the Myth Busters did a series including a visit to the lunar laser ranging telescope at McDonald. There they bounce lasers off the retro reflectors which were/can-be seen in the live/recorded TV transmissions being placed on the surface of the Moon by humans.
 
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crazyeddie

Guest
Desideratum":1c0nzlh8 said:
Ok I am new to this so excuse me if this has already been asked. Can anyone explain with any knowledge why there are no new pictures of the moons surface reflecting the moon landing and eqiupment left on the moon? The only photos we have of the landing, the surface or equipment left on the surface are 40 years old and was provided by the government. Why has no third party or foriegn government been able to photograph the flags or equipment NASA claims to have left of the moon? I find this incredible that we can take pictures of galaxies far far away but we cannot take pictures of the moons surface. A new picture of the equipment, if it is there, would be a front page photo around the world. This makes no sense.
The Russians had every reason to want to prove we never landed on the moon, but even they don't dispute the fact that we landed there seven times. After all, they, too, can bounce laser beams off the instruments we left there. It makes perfect sense that no one can photograph the flags or equipment if you have even a rudimentary understanding of optics. The angular size of these objects, as seen from Earth, are almost inconceivably tiny. No Earth-based telescope, even the largest ones, can resolve them, especially through our planet's turbulent atmosphere. The Hubble Space Telescope isn't large enough, either, although the James Webb Space Telescope might be able to when it becomes operational.

Desideratum":1c0nzlh8 said:
If NASA was able to recon the moons surface, 40 years ago with antiquated technology, how come no one can now with assets we have now? Japan sent two satellites to the moon to take HD pictures...but no evidence of the landing has been published. If you think I am a loon, try an internet search and you will find nothing new, only photos from 4 decades ago.
That's not quite true. Here's a photograph taken of the Apollo 15 landing site at Hadley Rille, taken by an orbiting satellite:



About one-eighth of the way down from the top of the photo in the center of the image, notice how all the light-colored craters have dark depressions in their center.....except for one. That's the dust kicked up by the Lunar Lander's exhaust.

Now, I'm sure you're thinking something like, "Oh, well, these could be retouched photographs!", and if you are, then it's clear nothing will convince you, short of taking a trip to the moon yourself....and even then you might still not believe it, because I suppose you could always argue that the equipment was left there by robotic landers and machinery that left footprints in the dust. If you've already made up your mind because you have some emotional reason for wanting to believe in the most complex, expensive hoax of all time, one that involved millions of Americans that were employed by NASA and their subcontractors, well then there's no point in discussing this with you.

Desideratum":1c0nzlh8 said:
Also, the actual film of the landing has somehow been lost at the National Archives. I know there are many who do not believe the it occured, I am one of them. I know there are many who believe what ever the government tells them. But would you not agree that all it takes is a simple picture taken by a third party to settle the matter once and for all? After all, if you assert a fact, like the moon landing, but have no way to prove it in 2009 with all our technology, then the joke is really on you, not those who did not believe it in the first place.
No, I would not agree that "all it takes is a simple picture", because my experience tells me that people like you are wedded to your conspiracy theories, and you are more interested in believing what you want to believe than you are interested in knowing the truth. Your response to this post will tell me whether or not I'm correct in my assessment.
 
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thermionic

Guest
Well look at that, a giant moon worm! NASA has been suppressing the truth about life on the Moon all this time!
 
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MarkStanaway

Guest
One of the more convincing arguments that the moon landings were a fact was that there were six of them. If for arguments sake they had got away with the greatest hoax of all time once why on earth would anyone go through the whole exercise five more times!!! The risks of someone spilling the beans from the 400,00 workforce of project Apollo at its peak would be enormous. No credible 'whistle blower' has ever come forward in 40 years! And then why throw in a totally unscripted Apollo 13 saga.
Trust me the moon landings happened and personally those few short in the late '60s and '70s were the most memorable of my life.
 
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kelvinzero

Guest
There is one upside to the moon hoax myth,

It may well irritate people into going back and taking these photos.

The photos wont be believed, so that will keep interest up in more diverse parties producing more extravagant proofs.

I am quite happy if hoax beleivers do no rest until joe public can take tour buses to the site.

Of course by the time the buses are there, it will seem quite reasonable to the people of the time that the site itself is a fake made of cardboard rolls and aluminium foil, but if I get my moon buses I will only feel gratitude to these ninnies :)
 
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aphh

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It has been rumored that the Keck telescopes working in tandem as an interferometer might be able to see enough detail to reveal the landers.

However, telescope time is hard to come by, let alone two telescopes at the same time, so for obvious reasons this has not been tested, only rumored.

Hopefully LRO will be able to do the trick.
 
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JonClarke

Guest
aphh":1soh1hhu said:
It has been rumored that the Keck telescopes working in tandem as an interferometer might be able to see enough detail to reveal the landers.

However, telescope time is hard to come by, let alone two telescopes at the same time, so for obvious reasons this has not been tested, only rumored.
Not to mention the fact that teleescope time is expensive and anyone who wanted to use the Keck for such a trivial and pointless purpose would be laughed out of court.

Not that such photos would convince a determined hoax believer, anyway. Although I could be wrong. Afterall, the face on Mars crowd are much quieter these days, after Mars Express and HiRISE showedd that the "face:" was indeed just a hill. Maybe LRO will shut a few of the HBers up.

Jon
 
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aphh

Guest
JonClarke":1oxi517c said:
Not to mention the fact that teleescope time is expensive and anyone who wanted to use the Keck for such a trivial and pointless purpose would be laughed out of court.
I wouldn't say it was completely trivial and pointless.

Engineers would love to get their hands on a high resolution data from the landers to see how our technology fared 40 years on the surface of the moon exposed to both space and moon environment.

That's why I am a little dismayed to learn that even LRO might be only capable of showing the hardware as mere dots in the images.
 
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MeteorWayne

Guest
That's just silly. At best it will be a few dozen pixels for a several meter square object.

If you want to spend a few hundred million of your own money to get a better view, go for it!

Until then, the priorities of exploring all of space are at a higher level.

We won't learn anything useful about how it has fared until we can reach out and touch it :)

That's a few decades away....
 
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aphh

Guest
I know many engineers who wouldn't consider getting quality data from man-made artefacts that have been on the surface of the moon for forty years silly.

What is silly is if you think we could not learn anything from such data.
 
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ZenGalacticore

Guest
Another Lunar Landing Hoaxer. Oh brother!! 'sigh' 'sigh' 'sigh'! WHY WOULD WE FAKE IT SIX TIMES!

As far as the equipment goes, it will be largely unchanged for 100s of MILLIONS of years. And it will all be there for BILLIONS of years. It aint going anywhere. One day, it will be a roped-off 'outdoor' museum, and the conspiracy nut-jobs will finally be silenced.*

*Or probably not. They'll then say we retroactively 'faked' the lunar landers and other gear in the year 2323.
 
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aphh

Guest
ZenGalacticore":2zv023zz said:
As far as the equipment goes, it will be largely unchanged for 100s of MILLIONS of years.
Hardly. Harsh conditions, two weeks of blinding sun and two weeks of chilly night plus exposure to micrometeorites and radiation WILL erode the materials. Perhaps not in a year or two, but definitely in decades or centuries time.

The hardware will seek equilibrium to it's neighborhood pretty quickly in those conditions. The landers will be eventually reduced to dust.

It is a romantic but wrong notion that things will remain unchanged on the moon for a very long time. One meteorite might turn a historic landing site into a crater.
 
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ZenGalacticore

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aphh":2bt92bqu said:
ZenGalacticore":2bt92bqu said:
As far as the equipment goes, it will be largely unchanged for 100s of MILLIONS of years.
Hardly. Harsh conditions, two weeks of blinding sun and two weeks of chilly night plus exposure to micrometeorites and radiation WILL erode the materials. Perhaps not in a year or two, but definitely in decades or centuries time.

The hardware will seek equilibrium to it's neighborhood pretty quickly in those conditions. The landers will be eventually reduced to dust.

It is a romantic but wrong notion that things will remain unchanged on the moon for a very long time. One meteorite might turn a historic landing site into a crater.
Since the equipment doesn't have eyes, it won't be affected all that much by 'blinding' sunlight.

What are the odds of a meteor impacting on one of the six landing sites of the Apollos?

There is no wind, flowing water, or erosion on the Moon. Sure, they won't last forever, but they will last far beyond decades or centuries. I read that the astronauts' footprints could last 10,000 or more years alone, very slowly 'eroding' over time from micrometeors and moonquakes.
 
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aphh

Guest
ZenGalacticore":1wbiv5wi said:
Since the equipment doesn't have eyes, it won't be affected all that much by 'blinding' sunlight.
Being two full weeks exposed to direct sunlight will heat up the objects immensely, which means there will be thermal expansion. During the two weeks of night the materials will shrink when they "freeze". This mechanism causes erosion.

What are the odds of a meteor impacting on one of the six landing sites of the Apollos?
Evidence from past missions indicate changes in lunar terrain, so the chance of a direct impact on a previous or future landing site has to be considered.

There is no wind, flowing water, or erosion on the Moon. Sure, they won't last forever, but they will last far beyond decades or centuries. I read that the astronauts' footprints could last 10,000 or more years alone, very slowly 'eroding' over time from micrometeors and moonquakes.
The material you refer to has already been exposed to moon environment for millions of years, so it has reached equilibrium with it's surroundings already. All of the equipment sent to the moon are made of very light-weight materials so changes caused by moon environment are inevitable.

There is no way to say for certain how much change has occurred before getting the actual data or items back. That's what the engineers would like to learn about, how technology or structures fare on the moon over decades.

What if we wanted to build a telescope on the moon to last for a fifty or perhaps hundred years? Would it help us to study artefacts that have been on the moon for four decades? I think it would.

I myself had hoped that this aspect had been considered with LRO mission, but as you can see from above from replies by an astronomer and a geologist, they see this aspect as silly, if not absurd. Yet we are supposed to go back to stay.
 
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aphh

Guest
Currently we have six abandoned relatively large bases or stations on the moon.

To help calculate potential hazard posed by meteor impact on a moon station, we should revisit all of the stations and study the artefacts and the neighborhood to determine the size and frequency of meteor impacts in the area of the old bases.

Why can't we do this?
 
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MeteorWayne

Guest
I'm sure we will when we can afford to.

If you'll recall, we haven't been back to the surface of the mmon in 37 years.
 
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drwayne

Guest
ZenGalacticore":2dq2cq4d said:
Another Lunar Landing Hoaxer. Oh brother!! 'sigh' 'sigh' 'sigh'! WHY WOULD WE FAKE IT SIX TIMES!

As far as the equipment goes, it will be largely unchanged for 100s of MILLIONS of years. And it will all be there for BILLIONS of years. It aint going anywhere. One day, it will be a roped-off 'outdoor' museum, and the conspiracy nut-jobs will finally be silenced.*

*Or probably not. They'll then say we retroactively 'faked' the lunar landers and other gear in the year 2323.
I had always imagined a hoaxer getting to touch lunar hardware and then asking "So when did you actually put this up here?"

Wayne
 
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DJAtkins26

Guest
can not even think about how much money is just laying around unused on the moon
 
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MeteorWayne

Guest
Welcome to Space.com!

What money? There's a bunch of dead spacecraft and modules. A lot of material in the lunar regolith that we don't have the means to use yet.

I don't know of any piles of gold, dollars or rubles :)
 
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CalliArcale

Guest
ZenGalacticore":ox4ws8fu said:
Since the equipment doesn't have eyes, it won't be affected all that much by 'blinding' sunlight.

What are the odds of a meteor impacting on one of the six landing sites of the Apollos?

There is no wind, flowing water, or erosion on the Moon. Sure, they won't last forever, but they will last far beyond decades or centuries. I read that the astronauts' footprints could last 10,000 or more years alone, very slowly 'eroding' over time from micrometeors and moonquakes.
You might be surprised. While the risk of a meteoroid striking one of the Apollo sites is pretty low, there *are* actually erosive processes at work on the Moon. One of them is the Sun. It's not so much the blinding brilliance of it so much as the presence of charged particles. These particles do not reach the Earth's surface, being deflected/absorbed by our magnetosphere and atmosphere. Consequently, we don't have an intuitive appreciation for the destructiveness of totally unfiltered sunlight. The flags are almost certainly gone by now. (Oh, bits may survive, but they probably are not recognizable. Heck, even a flag in the open sun for forty-five years on Earth would be falling apart by now. Fabric doesn't do well in sunlight.)

LM descent stages and experiment packages will have fared better, though foil may be severely pitted from micrometeoroids and the solar wind.

We know from satellite pictures (Clementine, Kaguya, etc) that the disturbed soil has not yet weathered significantly. (The solar wind gradually alters the color of exposed regolith.) So I would bet that the footprints are still quite visible. However, one rather interesting erosive process is at work that may be eroding them more quickly than all that -- electrostatic dust storms. This effect is not well understood, but there is evidence that electrostatic charges lift dust particles off the surface of the Moon and hold them suspended in the air for some time, mostly around sunrise and sunset. The Apollo crews did not observe this, since they were making a point of landing at a time other than sunrise or sunset. (They aimed for local midmorning or midafternoon.) It's not known how significant this process is at erosion, but if it lifts particles up and then drops them down, it's reasonable to expect that some will wind up getting moved into the footprints. That may be the process that erases them first.

Unless, of course, we erase them ourselves....

The Lunar X-Prize is being offered to the first team which sets a robotic lander down on the Moon and returns images of an Apollo landing site. So before long, it's possible that there will be *commercial*, up-close images of an Apollo site! Observers have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand, it's awesome to see private space flight to another world, and way-cool to get Apollo pics. But on the other hand, these are *really* historic sites, and there's also a lot of scientific value to them. (Studying how the equipment has fared in the intervening decades would be extremely valuable.) If the sites are damaged or contaminated, it would be very unfortunate.
 
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