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Good morning all! I recently stumbled across a comment on one of our friend's Facebook pages refuting the truth of the Apollo Moon landings. As many of you have probably seen - this is an issue that MyMoon has tackled via the 'Conspiracy Showdown' poster on our homepage, where you can watch videos of scientists addressing the conspiracy claims and explaining the science of what was really going on by clicking the links on the (opened) poster page.
P.S. - if you haven't checked out the "Conspiracy Showdown," you should today!
Anyway, one of our own here at the LPI - Dr. Paul Spudis - also took a few minutes to address this issue and I would like to share his response with you below:
Dear Facebook User, The Moon landings were not faked, but very real. Let’s examine some of the problems with your assertion:
1. Thousands of people (many of whom are still alive today) worked on the Apollo missions to the Moon. Having all of them be party to a “hoax” would be nearly impossible. There are always disgruntled or dissatisfied people in any group, no matter how small, and if the lunar landings had been faked, why wouldn’t these people expose the hoax?
2. Pictures of the Apollo landing sites taken by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter in the last few years show the descent stages of the Lunar Modules, equipment, backpacks and flags deployed on the Moon by the astronauts. The best images taken by LRO show the footprints of the astronauts, preserved on the unchanging lunar surface for over 40 years! If these sites on the Moon (over a quarter of a million miles away) are faked, how could a robot set-up all these pieces of equipment and make the foot-trails of the astronauts yet leave no traces of their own presence there?
3. We have more than 800 lbs of rocks and soil from the Moon in the laboratories of NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston. These samples not only could not possibly come from Earth (being completely void of any water or evidence of terrestrial atmosphere); they show clear evidence for impact shock, solar wind implantation and irradiation by cosmic rays, processes that could only happen on an airless, rocky body like the Moon. There is too much quantity of sample from too many diverse areas to have been collected and returned by a robotic probe.
4. “If we went to the Moon so long ago, why haven’t we been back to it?” – In brief, because we have had no reason to. We went to the Moon in the 1960s not to explore it or settle there, but to beat the Russians (or the former Soviet Union) there. Once we won the race to the Moon, we did not need to continue to do so indefinitely.
5. Some common objections (and responses) to a real Moon landing include:
a. The “waving” flag on the airless lunar surface in video – the Apollo flags had a stiff wire to hold the cloth out at right angles to the pole, so that the flag would stand out. As the crew shoved the flagpole into the lunar dirt, they bumped and moved the pole, making it appear to “wave.”
b. No stars visible in the sky in pictures taken on the lunar surface – the extreme brightness of the glare from the lunar surface meant that any image that could show faint starlight would be vastly overexposed from the lunar surface. As we wanted to see the Moon, the cameras were stopped down to bring out detail in the lunar surface, not the starfield in the sky.
c. Cast shadows on the surface are not parallel – they wouldn’t be, if the surface were uneven and undulating. The myriad craters on the surface make an irregular, rolling terrain, so shadows will vary in length and direction.
d. No blast crater under the Lunar Module engine – There actually IS a “swept zone” beneath the engine bell of the six Lunar Modules that landed on the Moon. There is no crater because beneath the top few inches of loose soil, the lunar dirt is very compacted and dense and this material does not erode under the blast of a rocket engine.
e. “Ghost-like” images of astronauts walking on the Moon let you see through them during the supposed moonwalks – The slow-scan TV camera carried by the Apollo 11 mission used a video tube coated with phosphor, which would “glow” with an image after scanning by an electron beam. This led to a slight “image persistence” in which an image would not fade immediately, but do so slowly over the course of a few seconds. This led to the appearance of being able to “see through” an astronaut walking around on the lunar surface.
Hope this information helps.
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