Posted by Paradox on February 22, 2001
at 18:20:37 on the Bad AstronomyBulletin
Okay, let's see if I have this right:
NASA spends some twenty billion dollars (in 1960's dollar values) on the
NASA has, at the time, some 35,000 employees, and is directly involved
with hundreds of contractors and sub-contractors, ranging from Lockheed
and Graumann to GM and IBM, involving some 100,000 more people.
NASA launches NINE Atlas boosters, the most powerful on the planet at the
time. These launches are watched by tens of thousands of civilians live
and in person, plus millions more via TV. Each launch consumes some $25
million in fuel alone. Two were manned flybys, six were successful landings,
one was an incompleted landing.
HAM radio hobbyists worldwide listen to the direct broadcasts from the
spacecraft as it makes it's journey.
Our direct competitors in the ``Space Race'', Soviet Russia, has the ground
listening stations- for their own (unmanned) Lunar missions- and can listen
in on our radio signals and telemetry in "real time".
To properly track the craft, listening stations arrayed literally around
the world are involved- Hawaii, Australia, England, Europe, etc.- to not
only track trajectory, but to relay signals and telemetry, etc. These stations
are for the most part NOT manned by Americans and not under NASA's direct
Due to the weak nature of the radio signals- it's a 240,000 mile trip-
high-gain ``dish'' type antennas are needed for high-quality signal reception
(though HAM operators could listen to the voice-only channels on less powerful
arial type antennas) and transmission of the video and telemetry signals.
If these dishes were not precisely aligned- in other words, pointed directly
at the moon, the signal would be lost. (Got a dish-type TV antenna for
satellite TV? One can't just point it in a random direction and get a signal-
it has to be rather precisely aligned. Roughly half a degree of arc in
any direction and the signal is lost, and the satellite is only about 1,000
Astronauts visit the Moon SIX times- not just once, and each MONTHS apart-
and each flight is watched by millions of TV viewers and monitored by thousands
of amateur and professional personnel.
During these six flights- and indeed the seventh ill-fated flight- literally
millions of feet of film are brought back, hours of TV images are beamed
back, and the astronauts bring back some 800 pounds of rock, soil and dust
Of the pictures taken, thousands of photos and hours of film were released
to the public. Those pictures have been studied, published, republished,
studied again, and broadcast around the World. Some of the finest minds
of the 60's, '70's, '80's, '90's and today have looked at these photos,
watched the video and film and studied them carefully. Carl Sagan and Stephen
Hawking saw the photographs- are you smarter than they?
Of the samples, thousands of geologists and specialists quite literally
worldwide have studied them for some thirty years. Geologists in Australia,
England, France, Germany, Russia and Canada have studied them, as well
as Americans from nearly every major scientific institution in America
from CalTech and MIT to the U of Michigan.
Any one of these geologists can tell that a ``moon'' rock is entirely different
from a ``meteor'' as collected on Earth. (For one thing trace elements
and crystalline growth point to extremely slow cooling- as in many years-
in an oxygen and nitrogen-free environment. Meteors get red-hot on reentry,
where the surface both melts and oxidizes. Moon rocks also show no signs
of weathering or erosion, other than by actual impact damage.) All of which
is beginner's course data for a geology class, and extremely easy to prove
or disprove. If you know what you're looking for.
Of the science experiments performed on the moon, several laser reflectors
can STILL be utilized by any observatory with a sufficiently powerful telescope.
These reflectors allow a measurement from the Earth to the Moon, with an
accuracy down to centimeters.
When the modules returned to Earth, they were tracked on radar, again by
dozens of radar installations, only a few of which were American, and splashed
down near, and were recovered by, aircraft carriers that themselves crewed
some 5,000 men. On radar, a module dropping from a reentry trajectory is
quite different from a "bomb drop" trajectory had the module been dropped
from an aircraft.
All through the flight, hundreds of people directly tracked the flight's
every system and every move: from the fuel level, to the Astronaut's heartbeat
and body temperature, to the direction and orientation, to the cabin temperature
to cabin oxygen pressure- and everything in between. These people were
watched basically 24 hours a day in Mission Control, by literally thousands
of TV, radio and newspaper reporters.
The Soviets were also working on several unmanned missions, a few of which
have also returned with soil samples. It's a given they they, too, tracked
the craft and listened in on transmissions- after all, it was indeed a
``race'', Russia already had the telemetry receiving stations up and running
for their own missions, and, of course, there was the possible angle of
political embarrassment had they detected any ``fakery.''
The Soviets have also been allowed to study our soil samples, to compare
them with the small samples their automated systems returned. Seems it
would be tough to ``fake'' moon soil well enough to fool those that had
"the real thing". (Moon soil, by the way, is not ``dirt''- it's primarily
micrometeoroid particulate, with a lot of pyroclastic material (lava) that's
been pummeled to dust by tens of millions of meteor impacts of the least
few billion years, as well as particles from the impacts themselves, often
in the form of tiny beads of a glassy substance that comes from fused rock
blown out by the heat and force of the impact.)
And now, after thirty plus years...
FOX, the guys who bring us ``When Animals Attack'', eight weekly versions
of cop-chase and car-crash videos, and who *produced* and then marketed
and sold the ``Alien Autopsy'' videos as ``the real thing'', tells us it's
all ``fake'' because they don't understand the simple technology behind
a camera F-stop or a wide-angle lens, we're to believe THEM and ignore
all the rest?
Who's kidding whom here?