Author Topic: Apollo 12  (Read 21781 times)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #20 on: 11/16/2014 07:27 PM »
Outbound, heading for the Moon...

A few views from 45 years ago:  the sad state of one of the ice-encrusted CM windows, a good shot of Pete's PLSS during the LM inspection, and a view of the LPD scribe marks on Pete's window.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
« Last Edit: 11/16/2014 07:28 PM by the_other_Doug »
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #21 on: 11/16/2014 07:34 PM »
And yet a few more views from the TV broadcast that included the LM inspection.

First, a view of the Moon out of a CM window -- this is where CAPCOM quipped that they were "all dressed up and no place to go," and Pete quipped back, "Oh, we're going somewhere, all right.  Can see it getting bigger and bigger, all the time."

Second, a view of Earth from one of the other CM windows.  And finally, Dick Gordon putting the probe back into the tunnel after the LM inspection closeout.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #22 on: 11/17/2014 05:20 AM »
Continuing on in the mission, Yankee Clipper, with Intrepid in tow, arrives at the Moon...

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #23 on: 11/18/2014 02:52 AM »
On Apollo 12, the tradition of sending the first TV broadcast during Rev 2, still in the lopsided LOI-1 orbit, was changed and the crew cranked up their TV camera during their first frontside pass on Rev 1.  So the crew were excited to show the viewers on Earth things they were seeing up close for the first time, themselves.

A few images from the Rev 1 telecast, here... again in the HDTV format of 1920x1080, with the full frame from the TV image shown in the center with dark bands on either side.  (Also, notice that the images from the Apollo 12 CSM TV camera had a small white dot near the bottom.  This was a burned-out phosphor dot that actually was burned out during one of the Apollo 11 telecasts.  The CSM camera for Apollo 12 was the flight article used on Apollo 11, cleaned up and refurbished a bit but with the same vidicon tube.  The lunar surface TV camera on Apollo 12 -- more on which later -- was the CSM camera used on Apollo 10, refinished with light-reflective white paint, monitor removed and an adapter fitted to adapt the sequential color TV camera output to the power/data cable designed to support the Westinghouse B&W  lunar surface TV camera as used on Apollo 11.)

First image is of one of the nearside craters in fairly high sun.  Since Apollo 12 was the west-most of the Apollo landing sites, the sunlit part of the Moon covered more of the nearside, and some things seen under low sun angles on the previous three lunar missions were here under a higher sun, and areas not seen except in Earthlight by earlier crews were seen under low sun angles by Conrad and crew.

Second is a more dramatic image of the Moonscape as the sun sinks lower behind the spacecraft, as it approaches the morning terminator.

Third is a very dramatic image right at the terminator.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #24 on: 11/18/2014 02:55 AM »
On Rev 13, Yankee Clipper and Intrepid came around the corner still docked.  As TV, movie and still cameras clicked away, Intrepid separated from Yankee Clipper in preparation for the descent maneuvers.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #25 on: 11/18/2014 03:05 AM »
PDI -- and a test of whether or not Pete would say, at pitchover, "There it is!" or "Reset the sim, I ain't seein' nothin' I recognize."

It was the first.  In the first image, you can see the Snowman near the top left of the image.  In the second image, I have outlined the visible portion of the Snowman.  Visible is the Surveyor crater (the body), the right and left foot craters and the right hand crater.  Head crater is cut off by the top of the frame.  It's Right Hand crater that is the large-looking crater that wheels through the field of view later in the descent as Intrepid maneuvers around, and that's often mistaken for Surveyor crater.

In the third image, Pete has finished his maneuvering around the Surveyor crater and is beginning to drop straight down.  He's at about 150 to 200 feet, and you can just see dust starting to blow near the bottom center of the frame.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
« Last Edit: 11/18/2014 03:35 AM by the_other_Doug »
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #26 on: 11/18/2014 03:10 AM »
Coming down, into a maelstrom of blowing dust.  The front gear secondary strut is visible, and near the surface it's the only thing that isn't an op-art kaleidoscope of radiating dust patterns.  In the final shot, you can see (barely) the shadow of the probe on the right-side landing gear as it reaches for the ground.  The shadow is visible as much upon the dust cloud as on the ground below.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #27 on: 11/18/2014 03:11 AM »
And finally -- INTREPID IS IN PORT!

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline llanitedave

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #28 on: 11/18/2014 03:28 AM »
If I'm ever in a machine (airplane, rocket, whatever) that has an electrical problem, I want Pete Conrad in it! :)

But keep Alan Bean away from the TV camera!
"I've just abducted an alien -- now what?"

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #29 on: 11/18/2014 04:38 AM »
...keep Alan Bean away from the TV camera!

LOL!  I'll have a couple of images coming up to try and help people understand why Al had such a problem.  Look for them tomorrow.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline llanitedave

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #30 on: 11/18/2014 04:06 PM »
BTW, I loved Alan Bean's segment on the "In the Shadow of the Moon" series.  I'll bet he's a fantastic grandpa to somebody's kids.
"I've just abducted an alien -- now what?"

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #31 on: 11/18/2014 07:58 PM »
EVA-1 day!

First shot is what we saw when the MESA first deployed and the camera came on.  The important thing to note here is that the camera is looking directly down-sun.  As he descended, Pete rotated the LM in yaw such that the MESA area would be in sunlight, something no other LM commander did.  This has repercussions in about an hour, when Al tries to deploy the camera.

Second shot is Pete coming down the ladder, and the third is of his "Whoopee!" moment, as he jumps from the bottom rung of the ladder onto the LM footpad.  Note that "That may have been a small one for Neil, but it's a long one for me" wan't actually what Pete said after stepping onto the lunar surface.  It's what he said jumping from the ladder down to the footpad.  What he said after first setting foot upon the Moon was "Mark.  Off the...  Oooh, is that soft and queasy..."

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #32 on: 11/18/2014 08:06 PM »
More from the all-too-bried hour or so of TV coverage from the beginning of EVA-1.

First, here is Pete standing in the footpad of the LM, about to step onto the surface.

Second, an illustration of how the crew's suits served to light up shadowed areas with reflected light -- in this shot, Pete is to the right of the FOV and about even with the camera at the end of the MESA.  You can see his shadow at the far right side of the screen.  Compare this image, and how comparatively brightly lit the ladder and secondary struts are, to the "empty" image in the post above, or even the image with Pete standing in the footpad.  The light reflected from the suits was significant in illuminating the shadowed areas around the LM.

Third, Pete has just collected the contingency sample and is about to set it, handle and all, on the MESA.  He'll seal it and put it into the ETB for transport up to the cabin in a few minutes.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #33 on: 11/18/2014 08:17 PM »
More of Pete and Al on the Moon...

First, a good view of Pete's head and shoulders.  This gives us a very nice fisheye view of the LM and the lunar surface beyond in the reflection off Pete's visor.

Second, an image that tells us how the suits would have registered in full sun had the camera survived deployment away from the LM.  In most of the shots while the camera is in or in front of the MESA, you mostly see the crew in shadow and the automatic light control (ALC) circuit in the camera maximizes the sensitivity to see well in shadow.  But with Pete out in full sun, on the right side of the screen, the ladder area appear quite dark but Pete is pretty welld efined.  On Apollo 14, the images of the suits and other bright reflections bloomed very badly, to the point where the guys looked like white blobs bobbing along the surface.  From this image, it doesn't look like this camera would have had such bad blooming issues.

Third, a very good picture of Pete back at the ladder; from the context of the discussion happening at the time, I believe he was fiddling with the LEC straps at that time.  This is also the first shot I have from after Pete took the camera out of the MESA and had set it up on the tripod.  From now until Al moves the camera, the image appears inverted on the screens in Houston and around the world -- they had to intentionally invert it for the first segment of the TV coverage, since the camera is loaded into the MESA upside-down.  But the guys managing that manual inversion don't seem to flip it back around properly until Al starts to move it.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #34 on: 11/18/2014 08:22 PM »
As the EVA progresses, Pete finishes up his solo activities and Al joins him on the surface.

First, a very good picture of Pete facing the camera.  The color and definition are good enough that you can see the blue and red hose connections on the torso.

Second, Al comes down the ladder, with very good definition of the suit.  The hoses along the side of the torso are very clear.

Finally, Al stands on the surface, to the greeting from Pete "Welcome aboard!"

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #35 on: 11/18/2014 08:31 PM »
And now, the TV tragedy...

Here we a couple of very blurred pictures.  It's almost impossible to capture these few seconds in screen caps because the camera was moving quite quickly.  When watched in motion, as Al moves the camera, you can see the surface clearly for a moment, you can see the LM structure at and above the MESA, with the plume deflector and its struts showing clearly.  And you can, momentarily, see the sunlight leg of the LM just to the side of the MESA.  These pictures show a blurred image of the surface, and a very motion-blurred image of the LM's leg.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #36 on: 11/18/2014 08:45 PM »
Now... to present a little defense of Al Bean.

The first image is from a panorama taken by Al early during EVA-1.  This is taken from the same location where his checklist told him to set up the TV camera, between 10 and 11 o'clock out (as looking out from the LM's front footpad).  Because Pete rotated the LM to put the MESA into the sun, this location is not located within the LM's shadow, as desired -- it points right into the sun.  And since deploying the camera was supposed to be Pete's job, Al simply looked at the location on his own checklist and put it there.  To his credit, within about 15 seconds he recognized that it was pointed right at the sun and moved it, but the damage was done.

The second image is from a bare moment after the vidicon tube burned through.  You can see some movement through the field of view shown here as blurred movement, though you can barely make out the horizon.  The  third image actually shows reflections off the MESA in the lower left and you can barely make out a shadowy image of the LM leg to its left.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
« Last Edit: 11/19/2014 02:57 PM by the_other_Doug »
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #37 on: 11/18/2014 10:31 PM »
Here's a pic of the poor, burned-out camera.  Notice the white painted thermal coating and the large plug adapter about two feet down from where the power/data cord comes out the back of the camera.

As I noted before, this camera is the sequential color camera flown in the CSM cabin on Apollo 10.  The white thermal coating is there to keep it from overheating in the direct unfiltered sunlight, but the plug adapter is interesting, and persisted all the way through Apollo 16.

The power/data cable was designed for the Westinghouse B&W lunar surface camera.  That cable was incompatible with the TV data/power cable used in the CSM.  This adapter allowed the sequential color camera to communicate through the existing cable.  This was a lower-cost, lower-mass solution to the problem, since replacing the existing cable that ran through the descent stage, up into the ascent stage, and thence into the comm subsystem, would have been a real pain in the butt.

This adapter was used on all LMs through Apollo 16 (though, due to a failure of the LM's steerable S-band antenna, was not used on Sixteen).  It was decided to omit it while LM-12 was being constructed, to allow a little more science payload for the later J missions, so there was, by design, no "down the ladder" TV on Seventeen.

And, of course, we have to take a look at what Pete was referring to, as soon as he got on the surface and moved around to look behind Intrepid, when he said "Guess what I see, sitting on the side of the crater?"  Here are a couple of shots of the Surveyor, sitting with its solar panel/antenna mast and one of the omni antennas in the sun, the rest in the early-morning shade of the eastern half of Surveyor crater.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #38 on: 11/19/2014 02:33 AM »
And now for the really big "first" on Apollo 12 -- the deployment of the very first ALSEP.

Here we see Pete pulling on the tapes to open the SEQ Bay doors, Al pulling out the RTG pallet, and the other ALSEP pallet sitting on the ground.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Apollo 12
« Reply #39 on: 11/19/2014 02:36 AM »
Al fuels the RTG with the plutonium rod.

-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

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