Skeptics analyze the discrepancies and inconsistencies in the evidence that men landed on the moon in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Their conclusion: NASA faked the moon landings! Evidence of deception includes: the physical problems inherent in rocket control; the lack of a blast crater under the LM descent engine; the lack of stars in the lunar sky; discrepancies and similarities in the shadows and backgrounds of moon photos; flag waving on an airless moon; and the presence of deadly radiation in interplanetary space. The skeptics contend that astronauts have never flown beyond the Van Allen radiation belt.Written by
1. Crosshairs on some photos appear to be behind objects, rather than in front of them where they should be, as if the photos were altered.
* In photography, the light white color (the object behind the crosshair) makes the black object (the crosshair) invisible due to saturation effects in the film emulsion.
2. The quality of the photographs is implausibly high.
* NASA selected only the best photographs for release to the public, and some of the photos were cropped to improve their composition. There are many badly exposed, badly focused and poorly composed images amongst the thousands of photos that were taken by the Apollo Astronauts. Many can be seen at the Apollo Lunar Surface Journal. Photos were taken on high-quality Hasselblad cameras with Zeiss lenses, using 70 mm medium format film.
3. There are no stars in any of the photos, and astronauts never report seeing any stars from the capsule windows.
* There are also no stars seen in Space Shuttle, Mir, International Space Station and Earth observation photos. Cameras used for imaging these things are set for quick shutter speeds in order to prevent overexposing the film for the brightly lit daylight scenes. The dim light of the stars simply does not have a chance to expose the film.
* Believers in the hoax theory contend that the stars were removed from the photographs because they would have looked identical to the stars as seen from the Earth, i.e. no parallax view. However, the distance from the Earth to the Moon is very small compared to the distance to the stars, so no parallax would have been visible anyway. (The nearest star is over 100,000,000 times farther away than the Moon, and most stars are much farther away than that.)
4. The color and angle of shadows and light.
* Shadows on the Moon are complicated because there are several light sources; the Sun, Earth and the Moon itself. Light from these sources is scattered by lunar dust in many different directions, including into shadows. Additionally, the Moon's surface is not flat and shadows falling into craters and hills appear longer, shorter and distorted from the simple expectations of the hoax believers. More significantly, perspective comes into play. This effect leads to non-parallel shadows even on objects which are extremely close to each other, and can be observed easily on Earth wherever fences or trees are found. (Plait 2002:167-72).
5. Identical backgrounds in photos that are listed as taken miles apart.
* Detailed comparison of the backgrounds claimed to be identical in fact show significant changes in the relative positions of the hills that are consistent with the claimed locations that the images were taken from. Parallax effects clearly demonstrate that the images were taken from widely different locations around the landing sites. Claims that the appearance of the background is identical while the foreground changes (for example, from a boulder strewn crater to the Lunar Module) are trivially explained when the images were taken from nearby locations, akin to seeing distant mountains appearing the same on Earth from locations that are hundreds of feet apart showing different foreground items. Furthermore, as there is no atmosphere on the Moon, very distant objects will appear clearer and closer to the human eye. What appears as nearby hills in some photographs, are actually mountains several kilometers high and some 10-20 kilometers away.
6. The number of photographs taken is implausibly high. When the total number of official photographs taken during EVA of all Apollo missions is divided by the total amount of time of all EVAs, one arrives at 1.19 photos per minute. That is one photo per 50 seconds. Discounting time spent on other activities results in one photo per 15 seconds for Apollo 11.
* The astronauts were well trained before the mission in the use of photographic equipment. Since there were no weather effects to contend with and the bright sunlight scenes permitted the use of small apertures with consequent large depth of field, the equipment was generally kept at a single setting for the duration of the mission. All that was required of the astronauts was to open the shutter and wind the film to take a picture.
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