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Thread: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

  1. #161

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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    109:41:29 Aldrin Okay. Now I want to back up and partially close the hatch.
    109:41:47 Aldrin Making sure not to lock it on my way out.
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  2. #162

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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    It took 4 billion years to get one man on the moon and 20 minutes to get the second one.
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  3. #163
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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    Can't believe I slept through some of the best parts. Awake now and watching the current feed. Will go back and watch the descent, landing, etc.

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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    Some commentary:

    110:25:25 In the 16-mm film, the shadow of the Hasselblad lens can be seen at the left edge of the frame, with a small, sunlit portion of Buzz's suit just above it. About 16 seconds later, Buzz moves down-Sun with the camera in his right hand. He disappears from the 16-mm frame to the left, again, at about 110:25:49. At this point, he probably takes AS11-40- 5876, which shows an undisturbed patch of soil. At about 110:26:05, his right leg comes into view as he plants his right boot deliberately on the pristine patch. A frame from the 16-mm film taken at about 110:26:08 shows him with his leg extended and his boot planted. He then lifts his foot and backs out of the 16-mm field-of-view and takes two "after" pictures of the bootprint: 5877 and 5878. He took the second of these from slightly farther away and got better focus. Erwin D'Hoore has combined them as a red-blue anaglyph (1.9Mb). The length of the boot is about 33 cm and its greatest width is about 15 cm. (ALSJ Commentary)

    110:27:00 At about 110:27:00 Buzz steps back into view at the left and plants his boot just beyond the previous bootprint. In a frame from the 16-mm film taken at about 110:27:02, the first bootprint in just behind Buzz's boot. He now takes two pictures of his boot and the new print: 5879 and 5880. The 5-cm rock next to Buzz's boot in the Hasselblad images can be picked out in the 16-mm frame. Journal Contributor John Hancock was combined 5879 and 80 to give a somewhat larger field-of-view. (ALSJ Commentary)

    110:27:00 Readers should note that Buzz is following his checklist fairly closely and that the footprint photos are one of his tasks. During the 1991 mission review, he remembered that he was the one who took them. (ALSJ Commentary)


    110:27:20 Neil is going out some distance from the MESA to get material for the bulk sample, mostly in the area of the Solar Wind Collector, but also off-camera to the left. (ALSJ Commentary)

    110:27:20 Armstrong We wanted to not take too much time to collect that (bulk) sample but, at the same time, we wanted to minimize contamination from engine exhaust and tried to go out into areas that were, one, untrampled and, second, a little bit farther out. (ALSJ)

    110:27:20 I asked if he made any attempt to get a representative set of samples. (ALSJ Commentary)

    110:27:20 Armstrong In the bulk we were just supposed to get... (ALSJ)

    110:27:20 Aldrin Where was that close-up camera (Apollo Lunar Surface Close-up Camera or ALSCC)? Has that been used at this point? (ALSJ)

    110:27:20 Armstrong No. We get to it at the end, (chuckling) with great reluctance. They get nervous about that one at the end, if you remember. (ALSJ)

    110:27:20 The close-up camera, shown in detail by Thomas Schwagmeier from AS11-40-5931, was also known as the Gold camera, after the Principal Investigator, Dr. Thomas (Tommy) Gold. Apollo 13 photo KSC-70PC-11 shows Fred Haise training with the Gold Camera. I asked Neil and Buzz why they were reluctant to use it. (ALSJ Commentary)

    110:27:20 Armstrong Prof. Gold got his camera placed on the manifest very late and over crew objections. He hoped to support his erroneous theory of a 'cotton candy' surface. We had little enthusiasm for the intruder. (ALSJ)

    110:27:20 Thomas Gold was a long-standing proponent of a theory - based in part on radio astronomical observations of the Moon - that the surface was covered with a deep layer of fine dust into which spacecraft and astronauts might sink into oblivion. Unfortunately, neither the fact that pictures of the Moon taken by the Ranger spacecraft showed small craters that would not have survived in Gold's dust sea nor the fact the Surveyor spacecraft all landed safely on very firm surfaces kept Gold from intense lobbying to get his close-up camera flown. The close-up camera was designed to take very high resolution pictures of very small surface areas and, indeed, they showed that the top millimeter or two usually had a "fairy castle structure" that would explain the radio returns. However, the scientific return from the experiment probably did not match that of the other experiments flown during Apollo. (ALSJ Commentary)

    110:27:20 Armstrong The bulk sample took longer than in the simulations because the area where the bulk sample was collected was significantly farther from the MESA table than the way we had done it in training. The MESA table was in deep shadow and collecting samples in that area was far less desirable than collecting them out there in the sunlight where we could see what we were doing. In addition, (by going farther from the MESA) we were farther from the exhaust plume and the contamination of propellants. So I made a number of trips back and forth in the sunlight, and then carried the sample back over to the scale where the sample bag was mounted. I probably made 20 trips back and forth from sunlight to shade. I took a lot longer, but by doing it that way, I was able to pick up both a hard rock and ground mass (soil) in almost every scoopful. I tried to choose various types of hard rocks out there so that, if we never got to the documented sample, at least we would have a variety of types of hard rock in the bulk sample. This was at the cost of probably double the amount of time that we normally would take for the bulk sample." (ALSJ)

    110:27:20 Jack Schmitt, Jim Gooding (NASA's Lunar Sample Curator) and others have told me that Neil did a superb job of gathering a large, representative collection of samples in a relatively short period of time. Indeed, the fact that they are so representative of the site and of mare sites in general has meant that, over the years when researchers have wanted mare samples for use in procedures that would result in sample destruction, frequently, they were given Apollo 11 samples. One example that comes easily to mind is T.D. Lin, a researcher at Construction Technology Laboratories, who was looking into the feasibility of using lunar soil in the manufacture of concrete on the Moon - a process that could greatly reduce construction costs at a lunar base. After doing a great deal of preliminary work on simulated lunar soil made by breaking up terrestrial basalt, he requested a small quantity of lunar soil for a final test. Because Neil had collected such a large quantity of representative soil, in 1986 NASA decided that it would be useful to give Lin a small amount for his experiments, knowing that there was plenty left for future work. (ALSJ Commentary)

    110:28:22 Buzz is following his checklist in making comments about the lighting. The halo around Neil's shadow is shown best in AS11-40-5930, a picture that starts a pan he takes while Buzz is off-loading the science packages from the back of the LM. Buzz is out of the TV field-of-view, off-camera to the right. At one point during the following, Neil also goes off-camera to the right, presumably to collect more material for the bulk sample. (ALSJ Commentary)

    110:28:22 On the later flights where the actual landing site was known soon after touchdown, photographs show that the surface around the LM appears to be significantly brighter than the surrounding soils. In addition, each of the last three crews climbed hillsides several kilometers from their LM's and, with long focal length lens, took pictures of the spacecraft. In these pictures, too, the ground near the LM is light in color. In his commentary on Apollo 17, Jack Schmitt suggests that, during the landing, the engine plume sweeps the surface of small particles, increasing the proportion of larger particles and, hence, the amount of reflected sunlight. In places where the soil is subsequently disturbed by footprints or Rover tracks, the original state of the soil is more or less restored and those disturbed areas appear darker against the lightened soil. In support of this contention, he notes that areas of disturbed soil well away from the LM do not appear darker. (ALSJ Commentary)

  5. #165
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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    Upcoming milestones:

    111:10:22 Good EASEP data
    111:16:54 Seismic team wants crew to jump for data
    111:32:27 Laser reflector test successful
    111:37:48 Reentering Lunar Module
    111:42:37 Cabin repress
    112:00:31 SPAN "pretty incredible"
    112:01:51 FD - "last pad"
    112:56:30 Engine ARM circuit breaker broken
    114:00:04 Slayton jokes with crew
    114:06:16 Columbia Sleep Period Start
    114:18:49 Armstrong "can't get away with anything anymore"
    114:22:24 McCandless congratulates Neil and Buzz on behalf of the world
    114:33:07 Observation questions to the surface crew
    114:52:58 Tranquility Base Sleep Period Start
    120:59:08 Columbia Wake-up
    121:40:40 Tranquility Base Wake-up

    121:40:52 Crew describes where they slept
    123:07:53 Jim Lovell calls Columbia and Eagle
    123:10:33 Armstrong gives geology observations from question the night before
    124:22:04 Ascent from Lunar surface
    125:10:23 Armstrong: "First time we've ever agreed on anything."
    125:19:50 Rendezvous burn
    127:22:34 Collins jokes about docking
    128:00:52 Docked with Command Module
    129:04:08 Bathroom humour
    129:05:27 Transferring lunar samples to CM
    129:12:16 Bathroom humour
    129:12:58 Look in the lunar sample container
    130:09:14 LM jettison
    130:48:49 Duke askes Collins what it's like to have company
    130:49:23 NY Times uses largest headline text in history
    130:50:10 Deke jokes with Collins
    132:16:02 News report: Telegrams, cosmonauts, Goddard, wives, sports
    133:39:54 Collins excited about the success of the mission
    135:05:22 Collins complains about computer interface layout
    135:06:40 Crew tripple checking TEI numbers
    135:09:42 Collins and Aldrin run through TEI burn checklist
    135:14:24 Armstrong jokes about 'going forward'
    135:21:17 2 minutes to TEI. Collins thinks horizon check is going to be perfect
    135:23:36 Trans-Earth Injection (TEI)

  6. #166
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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    All of the recordings of data, conversations, course corrections, system and equipment tests, etc. It's so impressive how expansive it all is and very impressing to think they had the foresight, ability, storage, coordination that massive to preserve it all.

    When I see things like this makes me depressed to think of everything that was lost when the library at Alexandria burned to the ground.

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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    This was probably the "best worst case scenario" for this situation:

    112:56:30 Aldrin Hous - Houston, Tranquility. Do you have a way of showing the configuration of the engine arm circuit breaker? Over. The reason I'm asking is because the end of it appears to be broken off. I think we can push it back in again. I'm not sure we could pull it out if we pushed it in, though. Over.
    112:56:57 Mission Control Roger. We copy. Stand by please.
    112:57:23 Mission Control Tranquility Base, this is Houston. Our telemetry shows the engine arm circuit breaker in the OPEN position at the present time. We want you to leave it open until it is nominally scheduled to be pushed in, which is later on. Over.

    What a thing to find just before your sleep period. Combined with the cramped quarters, no wonder Neil didn't sleep well overnight.
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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    I somehow forgot it was built into the flight plan for them to do a second depress and throw their life support packs onto the surface around 114:11:00.

    114:18:33 Mission Control Roger, Tranquility. We observed your equipment jettison on the TV, and the passive seismic experiment recorded shocks when each PLSS hit the surface. Over.
    114:18:49 Armstrong You can't get away with anything anymore, can you?
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  9. #169

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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    1:45 from lunar ascent
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  10. #170

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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    Buzz and Houston back and forth about using Alpharetz (α Andromedae) rather than Capella to orient the inertial guidance has this interesting comment:

    "At this point, Buzz is performing an alignment of the LM's inertial platform. Rather than the traditional Program 52, which requires sighting two stars through the AOT, Program 57 is used. All platform alignments require determining the exact position of two references is space, which is all that is necessary to determine the platforms orientation to any reference. Normally, stars are used as the references, as they combine the necessary quality of being in fixed, well-defined locations in the sky. Program 57 does use one star for its orientation, but the fact the LM is on the surface allows the platform to use another well understood reference: the gravity field of the moon. Thus, performing a fix on a star, and sensing the gravity vector for its second directional reference supplies all the information necessary for the computer to align the platform to a known orientation."

    Nice, highly simplified diagram of LM control:

    Last edited by Kepler; 07-21-2019 at 12:21 PM.
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  11. #171
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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kepler View Post
    Gene Kranz was 35 as Flight Director.



    He is still alive.
    Flight controllers, as a whole, are pretty young. The stress is pretty crazy, and the home life is hard. I work ISS, which has been 24/7 since 2000. I worked 11p-7a on my first Christmas as a married man. My wife was ... not happy but very understanding. I'm almost 41 and am easily in the oldest 25% of the ISS flight controller cadre in Huntsville. (I'm probably also older than half of the ISS flight directors.)

    My favorite are the two ETHOS flight controllers in Houston who're married to each other. They often hand the console over to each other, which I'm guessing is the kindness of their flight lead to assign them a time every day for a week where they'll see each other.

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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    I skimmed the audio transcript coming up, but couldn't find the exact moment they got to arming the engine circuit (that snapped off last night) during the LM ascent startup, but there was this exchange that it didn't concern them activating the circuit:

    123:20:47 Mission Control Tranquility, Houston. For your information, the circuitry looks real fine on that ascent engine arm circuit breaker.
    123:20:58 Aldrin Roger. I don't think I could get it out now if I wanted to.
    Last edited by aparch; 07-21-2019 at 01:47 PM.
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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    Also, not only were there teams of people calculating their exact positioning with slide rules, maps, and arithmetic, but even minute details were so well planned out ahead of time:

    123:05:45 Mission Control Columbia, Houston. About 3 minutes to LOS, and I have your consumables update.
    123:05:54 Collins Ready to copy.
    123:05:55 Mission Control Roger. At 123 plus 00, RCS total minus 7 percent, Alfa minus 12 percent, Bravo plus 4.5, Charlie minus 7, Delta minus 6.5. Your hydrogen total minus 1.4 pounds, oxygen - oxygen plus 1.7. Over.
    123:06:41 Collins Whoever figured those hydrogens and oxygens out a couple of days ago must have known what he was doing.
    123:06:47 Mission Control Okay. I think I read that oxygen - it's a plus 17 pounds.
    123:06:55 Collins Roger. Still close.
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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    More Dad jokes from Aldrin:

    124:04:45 Mission Control Tranquility Base, Houston.
    124:04:51 Aldrin Roger. Go ahead.
    124:04:52 Mission Control Roger. Our guidance recommendation is PGNS, and you're cleared for takeoff.
    124:05:02 Aldrin Roger. Understand. We're number 1 on the runway.
    124:05:06 Mission Control Roger.
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  15. #175
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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    Number one on the runway...HA!
    That's fantastic.

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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    125:46:55 Armstrong ... Got that cockpit all cleaned up so that we got places for all our trash, Mike?
    125:47:06 Collins ...
    125:47:26 Armstrong Yes, we got them all over us - look like chimney sweeps.
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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    You can tell the crew is tired as the jokes are getting better/worse:

    127:21:35 Aldrin Oh, I've got him.
    127:21:50 Aldrin ...
    127:21:58 Armstrong I've got him now, too.
    127:22:07 Aldrin Sure enough.
    127:22:17 Collins Well, I see you don't have any landing gear.
    127:22:21 Armstrong That's good.
    127:22:25 Collins ...
    127:22:34 Collins You're not confused on which end to dock with, are you?



    127:25:38 Armstrong One of those two bright spots is bound to be Mike.
    127:25:43 Aldrin How about picking the closest one?
    127:25:51 Armstrong Good idea.
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  18. #178
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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    It's truly impressive that they pulled off that mission without any real sleep. Could you nap on the moon? I could not.

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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    Quote Originally Posted by gfmorris View Post
    It's truly impressive that they pulled off that mission without any real sleep. Could you nap on the moon? I could not.

    GFM
    I don't think I could either; and to think that the 15, 16, and 17 missions spent three days on the moon.

    Looking through the audio transcript this morning during their night on the Moon, and there was a note from the Apollo Public Relations audio that Neil's heart rate kept dipping into the 50's like he was falling asleep, but it wouldn't stay there long as he must have kept waking up. And Buzz didn't have his heart monitors attached (for likely the same reason).
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    Re: Apollo 11 - 50 years on.

    Some more audio gems from this afternoon's rendezvous.

    [Some housekeeping/toilet humor]

    128:40:11 Aldrin Houston, Eagle. Over.
    128:40:14 Mission Control Eagle, Houston. Go.
    128:40:20 Aldrin Roger. It doesn't appear as though the red hose is going to be much of a competitor to the leading vacuum cleaner brands. Over.


    And then apparently one (or both) forgot to stop at a gas station before docking with the CM. While they were moving items from the LM into the CM, I think they pranked Michael Collins.
    129:04:08 Aldrin Now, here are a couple of bags - and I think it's self-explanatory what goes in them.
    129:04:15 Armstrong Yes.
    129:04:18 Aldrin ... water.
    129:04:41 Aldrin Now, where are those things?
    129:04:44 Armstrong They're at the over ...
    129:04:55 Aldrin Maybe I could slide out of here ...
    129:05:20 Aldrin Hey, Michelle, you all tied up there?
    129:05:25 Collins ...
    129:05:27 Aldrin Get ready for those million-dollar boxes. Got a lot of weight; now, watch it.
    ...
    129:07:19 Aldrin ...
    129:07:20 Armstrong What?
    129:07:21 Aldrin ...
    129:07:24 Armstrong Get some tape.
    129:07:26 Aldrin Yes.
    129:07:29 Armstrong Still got some here?
    129:07:31 Aldrin Yes.
    129:07:31 Collins ...
    129:07:35 Armstrong Okay.
    129:08:54 Armstrong Do you want to vacuum off any of those – those ... spills or anything?
    129:09:07 Aldrin Well, that's ...
    129:09:22 Armstrong Oh, the tape, I guess.
    129:09:25 Aldrin Want tape?
    129:09:26 Armstrong Yes, please.
    129:09:27 Aldrin Here you are.
    ...
    129:11:42 Aldrin Say, you did get a couple of hard ones in there, didn't you?
    129:11:46 Armstrong Yes.
    129:12:16 Aldrin I guess we leave this here or do you want to take it up?
    129:12:19 Armstrong I'd leave that here.
    129:12:22 Aldrin That might be a little hard to explain.
    129:12:24 Armstrong Yes.
    129:12:42 Collins Hey, Neil?
    129:12:43 Armstrong Yes?
    129:12:44 Collins ...
    129:12:53 Armstrong Okay.
    129:12:54 Collins ... get rid of this ...
    129:12:58 Armstrong Okay. If you want to have a look at what the moon looks like, you can open that up and look. Don't open the bag, though.
    129:13:26 Collins ...
    129:13:29 Armstrong You'd never have guessed, huh? (Laughter)
    Last edited by aparch; 07-21-2019 at 09:30 PM.
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