New View of Apollo 14

NAC image of the Apollo 14 landing site acquired 25 January 2011. Descent stage of lunar module Antares in center, image width is 500 meters [NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University].

The LROC Narrow Angle Cameras continue to image the Apollo landing sites as the mission progresses. Every time LRO passes overhead, the Sun is at a different position so each image gives a different perspective. Repeat imaging also serves LROC cartographic goals. Since the position of the lunar modules and other pieces of hardware are very accurately known, the LROC team can check the accuracy of the mission-provided ephemeris. Think of the Apollo sites as benchmarks put in place four decades ago for the LROC team!

Close-up showing LM descent stage (right) and ALSEP (arrow), note astronaut tracks between the two landmarks [NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University].

The Apollo 14 astronauts explored the surface of the Moon on February 5th and 6th, 1971, 40 years ago this weekend. Much was learned during the Apollo missions, yet most of the history and geology of the Moon remains a mystery. When will we return to the Moon?

Post EVA view from LW looking west towards ALSEP. Match astronaut track patterns in the surface image and LROC overhead view, AS14-66-9338 [NASA/Arizona State University].

Retrace Al Shepard and Ed Mitchell's tracks across the Moon.

Read our previous LROC Apollo 14 posting.

Published by Mark Robinson on 4 February 2011