The TV camera's Apollo left on the Moon

The TV camera’s Apollo left on the Moon

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This is the Apollo 17 Lunar Module, and the moment when Gene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt, the last men to stand on the Moon’s surface left to return to earth… but if no one else is there, who’s operating the camera as it pans up and follows the ascent module? The view is actually from a video camera mounted on the Lunar Rover, which remains on the moon to this day. Remotely operated by ground control via the large high gain antenna on the rover itself, the shot was meticulously planned, and timed to account for the 1.2-second delay in …

Secret Soviet Lunar Rovers and Extra Terrestrial Cars

Secret Soviet Lunar Rovers and Extra Terrestrial Cars

Admin Aerospace, Extraterrestrial, space, Technology, Travel 0 Comments

For the last 50 years or so we have been using wheeled robots and vehicles to explore other worlds from secret Soviet lunar rovers to the first lunar car to the latest Mars Rovers, we owe a lot to our extra-terrestrial wheeled helpers. NASA recently released new concept art for ‘the Mars 2020 rover’. The robotic lab is shown in action in its potential landing sites on Mars: currently, three locations are being considered, and a final decision will be made in 2018 or 2019. If the images look like something you’ve seen before, it’s because the new rover is the …

The New Space Race to the Moon between NASA, SpaceX and Blue Origin

The New Space Race to the Moon between NASA, SpaceX and Blue Origin

Admin Rockets, space, Technology 0 Comments

Moon missions are becoming a bit like buses, it seems as though you wait the best part of 50 years for a return trip to the moon, then within a matter weeks, two, turn up at once. This is quickly turning into the new space race but this time it’s not between nation states but between private companies as Jeff Bezos, boss of Amazon and space company Blue Origin has said that they are looking to set up a base on the moon by the mid-2020’s. This comes within a week or so after Elon Musk releveled SpaceX’s plans to …

How did the Apollo flight computers get men to the moon and back

How did the Apollo flight computers get men to the moon and back ?

Admin computers, Science, space 2 Comments

There is much speculation by some, as to how the flight computer aboard the Apollo missions managed to get men to the moon when it had just a tiny fraction of the computing power of something like a modern smartphone. But this is quite misleading as there was not one solitary computer controlling the Apollo craft, there were 4 computers and no fancy touch screens, GUI’s or other things in a typical computer of today to waste resources on. The first of the 4 computers was the Saturn Launch Vehicle Digital Computer or LVDC, this got the rocket from the …

How did Apollo deal with the Van Allen radiation belts ?

How did Apollo deal with the Van Allen radiation belts ?

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One of the most hotly contested procedures during the Apollo missions was the how NASA dealt with the issue of the Van Allen belts, the naturally occurring belts of radiation that surround the earth, both on the journey to the moon and returning from it. To some this just proves the point that NASA never went to the moon because they contest that if the crew went through the Van Allen belts they would have received a lethal dose of radiation and died during or shortly afterwards but as we know that didn’t happen, so how did they achieve this. …