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NASA Moon Space

NASA Has the Lost Tapes 256

The Shuttle launch may have been delayed by two days, but NASA has better news to report. caffiend666 writes "As speculated a few weeks ago, NASA has found and is starting to restore the lost Apollo 11 tapes. A Briefing will be held July 16th at the Newseum in Washington to 'release greatly improved video imagery from the July 1969 live broadcast of the Apollo 11 moonwalk... The original signals were recorded on high quality slow-scan TV (SSTV) tapes. What was released to the TV networks was reduced to lower quality commercial TV standards.'"
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NASA Has the Lost Tapes

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  • Glad to hear that (Score:5, Insightful)

    by juanergie ( 909157 ) <> on Monday July 13, 2009 @08:46PM (#28684947) Homepage Journal

    but why do they find the lunar tapes a few days before the 40th celebration of the Lunar mission (Apollo 11).

    Is this a coincidence or PR?

  • Nice Title (Score:2, Insightful)

    by basementman ( 1475159 ) on Monday July 13, 2009 @08:46PM (#28684951) Homepage
    How about "NASA has Found the Lost Tapes"? Right now the title tells me that NASA is in ownership of the tapes, but just can't find them.
  • by sir_eccles ( 1235902 ) on Monday July 13, 2009 @09:04PM (#28685069)

    No, it won't convince any of the idiots who think we never landed on the moon. No amount of evidence ever will.

  • Re:Paradox alert (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Dr. Eggman ( 932300 ) on Monday July 13, 2009 @09:47PM (#28685309)
    Lost is not being used as an adjective anymore in this statement. Lost is now being used as an identifier, a name for, the tapes. The only purpose of calling them the lost tapes is to differentiate them from the other tapes they previously had. Making the headline "NASA has the found tapes" makes the statement more confusing and the title "NASA has found the tapes" would be equivalent to the current title.

    Of course, assuming the identifier 'Lost' is sufficient (given the context) is just leaving this story headline open to a whole other misinterpretation. Perhaps the story of the day is about NASA's "Lost: Season 1" DVDs finally arriving in the mail! =D
  • Re:Cool, any UFOs? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by PitaBred ( 632671 ) <`gro.sndnyd.derbatip' `ta' `todhsals'> on Monday July 13, 2009 @10:26PM (#28685549) Homepage
    If there were life intelligent enough to travel between the stars, do you REALLY think they'd allow an agency like NASA keep it under wraps? Seriously... you grossly overestimate the competence of government. Shit is nowhere NEAR that in control, by anyone.
  • by Tablizer ( 95088 ) on Monday July 13, 2009 @10:46PM (#28685735) Journal

    if you believe the Moon Landing was faked, a hoax, then the soon-to-come high-def photos of the moon should answer that...

    The "high definition" is relative. Later Apollo's had much better resolution, largely because they took a movie camera to the moon and brought it back to be developed rather than send live TV alone. The Apollo 11 footage is primarily of historical significance, being the first. Later missions also used color TV, unlike 11's B&W (although Apollo 12 accidentally ruined their TV camera early in the mission).

  • Re:Cool, any UFOs? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by PitaBred ( 632671 ) <`gro.sndnyd.derbatip' `ta' `todhsals'> on Monday July 13, 2009 @11:50PM (#28686255) Homepage
    Unverifiable links by anonymous authors citing anonymous sources are no better than science fiction. At least Isaac Asimov signed his work.

    There is jack and shit for evidence of intelligent alien life as of today. I'm sure the Russian hacker THOUGHT he could find images... where is the proof he did? Did he disseminate any of them? Any that cannot be easily dismissed as various atmospheric and interference phenomena? I mean, there are people who still think the moon images were faked, even though there have been extensive experiments [] and study done on them to verify them.

    Oh, and about the astronauts acknowledging (way to use spell-check there, sparky) alien contact? Bullshit []. With a capital fucking B. [] Lying does NOT help your credibility.

    Face it. There is no alien life near us, we really did land on the moon, and the government is NOT all powerful and able to keep a secret of that magnitude. Suggesting anything else is pure lunacy.
  • by Tablizer ( 95088 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2009 @12:03AM (#28686351) Journal

    3 Cheers for Packrats!

  • Re:Cool, any UFOs? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Khyber ( 864651 ) <> on Tuesday July 14, 2009 @12:18AM (#28686483) Homepage Journal

    "There is jack and shit for evidence of intelligent alien life as of today"

    Then explain us, fool. Life is hard-coded into the mathematical fabric of the universe. If there were even a single bacterium on another planet parsecs away, your exactly-quoted sentence just went to hell in a handbasket, because we would be the intelligent alien life to it, respectively.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 14, 2009 @02:11AM (#28687105)
  • by ledow ( 319597 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2009 @04:22AM (#28687779) Homepage

    We've sent probes down to the Marianas trench, so why aren't we living in bubbles down there? It's the same sort of question. Basically, because it's 'king hard to do still.

    Apollo was *unbelievably* expensive (now adjust for inflation!) to achieve and had ENORMOUS political backing... but well... not very much in terms of science got done (engineering, sure, but science? Not so much). We can now do that science *MUCH* better from, say, the International Space Station, Hubble or the Mars Rovers. There's three reasons where we haven't gone back to the moon. Space missions are primarily about science, not land-grabs, military superiority or other factors. It's the only way to recoup some of the costs (patents, etc.), provide impetus to the people doing it (scientists and engineers) and prove to other nations that your intentions are peaceful.

    Sending humans to places adds orders of magnitude to the costs involved in going somewhere (compare cost of one satellite to costs of one manned orbiting mission). Sending a probe, satellite or rover is so much cheaper in comparison, it's silly. And why do you need to send a human? To either say "Look, we stepped here" (Apollo, and Aldrin's recent suggestion to go back to Mars) or to colonise the place (way out of our capabilities at the moment, if not engineering then financial). Look at the problems and costs faced with the ISS... now imagine that it's several MONTHS away and several MONTHS back, even when you manage to get the Shuttle in the air to supply it (which takes months / years in itself). Astronaut ill? Ooops. He's dead. Tool needed for critical repair? Oops, there goes the air pressure before you can get to it.

    The Moon landings were not only possible in 1969 but probably earlier if enough money had been thrown at it. Modern satellites, shuttles, etc. really aren't that much more advanced (or, if they are, don't need to be in order to do the same job - most of the tech just makes it safer, more interesting, etc.). It's not a question of technology... it's a question of how do you justify several BILLION dollars of ongoing costs for probably about a decade in order to step next to the footprint on the moon and say "Hey, look what I did?". It worked back in 1969 because of the political backing and finances being MADE available. No chance of that now, unless it comes from joint ventures with NASA, ESA etc. and why would a joint venture want to go back to the moon when Mars isn't "that" much farther out of our reach? Or you could send a dozen probes to various places (Moon, Mars, orbit) for the same price.

    BTW: The onboard computer on the Apollo is probably outclassed by a fancy digital watch, or a desktop calculator now. Technology has moved on in orders of magnitude but it still doesn't really help when the only practical way to get thousands of tons of equipment off the ground against gravity is by lighting the end of a huge tube of liquid oxygen/hydrogen (literally TONS and TONS of it)... a gross simplification but that's basically the gist of the propulsion. Simple physics demands a certain amount of acceleration to pull it off (computers can help find an optimal path, but there's still a minimum that you need), therefore a certain amount of thrust, therefore a certain amount of fuel... and fuel prices don't go down much as technology increases, even for simple fuels like this. In fact, it's probably risen by quite a substantial amount because prices of things like metal for its containment, costs of transporting it etc. have risen.

  • by dzfoo ( 772245 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2009 @06:15AM (#28688375)

    RTFA. Or for that matter, RT-previous-FA regarding the missing tapes. They are not claiming that these tapes are high-resolution or higher quality than current TV signals. They are claiming that they are higher quality than the images broadcast 40 years ago, and replayed often since.

    The reason is that forty years ago these (slow-scan, lower resolution) tapes were broadcast by pointing a television camera to a display monitor, which was itself a television set. This greatly degraded the picture; but what made it worse was that this was then recorded into videotape through kinescope, losing even more quality in the process. The resulting tapes were all we had, since nobody has been able to see the originals for the last 40 years.


  • by HonIsCool ( 720634 ) on Tuesday July 14, 2009 @09:03AM (#28689637)
    The United States National Archives and Records Administration.

Think of it! With VLSI we can pack 100 ENIACs in 1 sq. cm.!