Apollo Moon Landing, Hoax or Not?

1969 Moon Landing Hoax?

Do you feel the Apollo moon landing was a hoax? I would love to hear from alot of you that were alive and old enough to have an opinion even when it was "happening".

Before you answer consider a few things that have been put into question about the event:

1- How could the American flag blow in the breeze on the moon when its an airless atmosphere?

2- There are no stars above the horizon in any of the "on the moons surface" pictures.

3- There was no visible disturbance in the soil from the high powered thrust engines of the landing module, yet Aldrin made a nice footprint in it when he 1st stepped onto its surface.

4- How did they get thru the Van Allen Belts and not die of extreme radiation exposure?

5- Of the 7 manned missions to the Moon, only Apollo 13 had trouble. That's an astounding 86% success rate. SINCE then 25 unmanned craft have been sent to Mars with only 7 succeeding which is a 28% success rate.

6- If the moons gravity is 1/6 of Earths then the astronauts should not have merely bounced across the surface but reached heights of ten feet or greater per leap.

The theories and so called evidence to argue either side go on and on and on. But whats your opinion on it and why?


Ok Ok

1st- I have not made a final judgement on the validity of this event.

2nd- I do not draw my info from any tv show. My question actually originates from a simple article that asked a few simple questions and pointed out a few things that to most commoners would seem odd.

3rd- I believe there is no low that our government would not sink to in order to remain the top dog of this world, INCLUDING faking this event to "win" the race to the moon. (again the jury in my head is still deliberating on this. I just would not put it past them.)

Your responses thus far are great. TY

Update 2:

How incredibly scientific it is of you to defend an event (that I am not even attacking) with responses like "youre an idiot", "you dont know what your talking about.". If teachers are responding to students who question events in history this way no wonder we have so many drop outs.

Try backing your comments rather then insulting people for asking them.

Update 3:

What I do know from earlier science is that old photography film is very sensitive to radiation. Wouldnt solar radiation have damaged photos take off-world?

Note I am not trying to debunk this event. I am merely trying to understand how they pulled these marvels off.

15 Answers

  • RickB
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Best answer

    I was 15 when the first moon landing happened. There was basically no doubt among anybody at the time that it was really happening. This may have been because the science was very well explained--in excruciating detail--by all the news media at the time; it may also be because the kids of that generation were more literate in basic science than today's kids. In any case, all of the so-called "evidence" of a conspiracy would have been laughed at as ridiculous by the kids of that generation, because all of it is based on ignorance of the science and history that were common knowledge at the time.

    All of your particular points have been refuted many, many times; but here's a summary response:

    1. "...flag blow in the breeze..."

    This is pretty basic physics. The top of the flag was supported by a rigid horizontal bar, and the bottom swung back and forth by inertia, like a pendulum. Mythbusters recreated this scenario in detail in a vacuum chamber, using an exact replica of the original flag.

    2. "...There are no stars..."

    This is pretty basic knowledge for anybody who knows about cameras. There is an enormous difference in light intensity between the bright lunar surface and the stars in the sky. In order to avoid overexposing the surface shots, you need to stop down the aperture and shutter speed to the point where the starlight is not bright enough to expose the film. In fact, if you've ever tried taking pictures of stars, you've probably found that you need to select a very dark location and leave the shutter open for several seconds. Try it yourself--try taking a picture of a well-lit, outdoor area at night, and see if any stars show up in your photo.

    3. "...no visible disturbance in the soil..."

    There was no "crater" left by the engines--but that's not surprising, as rocket engines simply don't leave craters. There's a misconception that landing engines work by blasting material against the ground. If you're familiar with Newtons's 3rd Law of Motion, you know that this isn't so. All that's necessary is for the gases to leave the nozzle at a high speed. What they hit afterwards (if anything) is irrelevant to the thrust they produce. In practice, the force of the escaping gas is quickly reduced as it expands out into the vacuum.

    Still, though no crater, there certainly was "visible disturbance" of the soil--enough so that it was visible from the JAXA satellite recently sent by Japan! See this image: ( http://www.unmannedspaceflight.com/index.php?s=a32... )

    4. "How did they get thru the Van Allen Belts..."

    In a word, "quickly." Here's a quote from the Wikipedia article about the Van Allen belts:

    "An object satellite shielded by 3 mm of aluminium in an elliptic orbit passing through the radiation belt will receive about 2,500 rem (25 Sv) per year". Now, the astronauts passed through the belts in less than an hour. That's about one ten-thousandth of a year, so we can expect that they received about 0.25 rem, or 0.0025 Sv. This is less than the dosage you get in a CT scan (source: http://www.ratical.org/radiation/CNR/XHP/DayInSunC... ).

    5. "...astounding 86% success rate..."

    Hah! You can compare statistics to whatever you like. 86% is quite LOW compared to, say, the success rate for the space shuttle. Also, getting to Mars is a completely different proposition. In Mars' case, you're aiming for something that is hundreds of times farther away, and (significantly) you're depending on it to land essentially BY ITSELF without human interaction (because Mars is too far away for the ground crew to make any last minute corrections like the Apollo crews did). All it means is that it's difficult to build something that will (a) get to Mars; (b) enter Mars' atmosphere at precisely the right angle BY ITSELF; (c) deply parachutes at the right instant BY ITSELF, based on theoretical models of a little-known atmosphere; (d) turn on landing rockets and/or deploy air bags BY ITSELF at just the right instant; and so on. It's simply much harder to send an unmanned lander far away than a manned lander close. That's not rocket science. :-)

    6. "shoud have...reached heights of ten feet or greater per leap."

    Now let's think about this. If you can jump 10 feet on the moon, you should be able to jump 20 inches on the earth. Try it. And make sure you don't pull your knees up at the top of the jump, because that's cheating, that's not really your body rising 20 inches.

    Okay, let's say you achieved that (I tried it, and couldn't do it.) Now, put on an Apollo space suit. It weighs 180 pounds (ref: http://apollomaniacs.web.infoseek.co.jp/apollo/spa... ). NOW see if you can jump 20 inches. Never mind, I'll tell you. With the same leg impulse as before, but (roughly) doubling your mass, your height will be reduced by a factor of 4 (reference: standard physics equations relating mass, impulse and height). Also, remember that you WON'T be able to deliver the same impulse because you can't flex your knees nearly as much on account of the suit's pressurization.

    Bottom line: With a space suit on, due to the extra weight, you should be able to leap about 6/4 (=1.5) times as high as (suitlessly) on earth, IF you could flex your knees by the same amount, which you can't.

  • 1 decade ago

    1) It couldn't. Which is why it didn't. The only time the flags moved at all was while in contact with an astronaut, and for a short time afterwards due to momentum.

    2) Learn something about photography, and this mystery is explained. The camera irises were set to properly expose foreground objects - the lunar surface, the astronauts, the vehicles, all of which were brightly lit by the sun. This eliminates any chance of stars being exposed in the same frame.

    3) If it had been possible to get an overview of the landing sites, I'm fairly sure that soil disturbance from the descent engine would have been evident. When one is right on top of some things, they can be hard to see.

    4) The Van Allen belts are not so highly radioactive that a spacecraft containing humans can't get through them, if they do so quickly, and through a low intensity zone. The spacecraft hull provided adequate protection.

    5) That is quite astonishing, isn't it? Chalk it up to the efforts of the thousands of people who diligently worked to make the Apollo missions as safe as they could have been, to triple redundancy, and to the "zero defects" program that was in place at the various manufacturers who built the vessels. My father was an inspector at the plant where the guidance systems were built, and I know well that he didn't allow any shoddy workmanship to leave the plant. He knew that lives and our national pride were riding on it. Mars, being much farther away than the moon, is a much more difficult target.

    6) Has it occurred to you that they were wearing heavy space suits, with heavy backpacks? Together, these added over 100 pounds of mass. You may say that that's less than twenty pounds on the moon, and that's true enough, but once it's in motion, it would still have exactly the same momentum that it would have on Earth. Add to that the various tools they carried and the mass of the samples they collected, and it's easy to see why there were no 10 foot leaps. Also, has it occurred to you that, on the moon, a quarter of a million miles from any help, they might have been motivated to move about cautiously, so as to avoid injuring or even killing themselves?

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    You're receiving some impolite responses because the reasons you are giving for the Moon landings possibly being hoaxed have been around since the 1970s and are thoroughly debunked. Some people are expecting you to have done more research before trying to make a case. You're just cutting and pasting from web sites, not telling people anything they haven't already heard a thousand times.

    Last question first: photographic film is actually MORE sensitive now than it was in the 1960s. But the real issue is that there's just not that much radiation out there. Conspiracy theorists will have you believe that as soon as you get a little bit above Earth orbit, space is full of instantly deadly radiation. Unfortunately those people were sleeping in science class. The ordinary aluminum film magazines and the reasonably thick skins of the spacecraft protect the film just fine.

    The ordinary flux of particles from the solar wind at periods of solar quiescience is handily absorbed by the Hasselblad longroll magazines. Conspiracy theorists often use the example of film subjected to x-ray examination at airports. Those x-rays are of an energy and flux considerably higher and more penetrating that those which occur naturally in space. Naturally-occurring x-rays won't even penetrate a meter of air, much less the aluminum case of a film magazine.

    1. Flag blowing in the breeze. It's not "blowing in the breeze," it's being held out by a specially-designed flagpole.

    2. Any photographer can tell you why there's no stars in the photos.

    3. The thrust at touchdown was 2,500 lbf, or about one-tenth the thrust of a Harrier jump jet. About 40% of that was pressure thrust, not momentum thrust. The plume disperses in a cone with a half angle of 45 degrees, making the fluid impact on the lunar surface far less than the load imposed on the ground by an SUV. "No visible effect" completely ignores the photographic and film evidence. Nevertheless, there is a huge difference qualitatively between a light plume impact and scouring and the mechanical force of an astronaut's footprint. The intended comparison here is completely invalid.

    4. The Van Allen belts are not instantly deadly. Dr. Van Allen himself didn't have a problem with the notion that astronauts passed through them, and has specifically called those conspiracy theories "nonsense." None of the conspiracy theorists have yet been able to demonstrate they're smarter than Van Allen himself when it comes to radiation.

    5. If you read the preliminary operations reports, EVERY mission except for Apollo 17 had a major malfunction. Apollo 13's was the only one serious enough to abort the mission. Landing unmanned spacecraft on Mars is very different than landing a manned spacecraft on the Moon. I don't know why you think they ought to have similar success rates.

    6. The physics of leaping are not at all as conspiracy theorists suspect. It has to do with the notion of impulse. Plus, the astronaut space suits have extension-limting cables in them, plus the natural rigidity of the suit. John Young leaps higher on video than anyone I know can do in normal Earth gravity. And there is video of Neil Armstrong leaping to the third rung of the Eagle, a height he estimated at 5 feet. While there are some extreme gymnastic examples in the Apollo record, for the most part such things were neither required nor advisable.

  • Noreen
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    1) The flag didn't wave. There were no waves propagated in it although it did move. 2) There WASN'T sun on every single part. Just look at the film. There were single shadows everywhere. Not only that, but the sun was much brighter because it had no atmosphere to shine through 3) The reason why the landing module didn't blow out a crater is because moon dust isn't that deep. It's just a few inches. Underneath is hard rock. Secondly, there WAS much dust blasted by the module as it landed (again, see video). It's just that dust has nothing to "hang" to since the moon has no atmosphere. So dust on the moon falls at the same rate as an anvil on the moon falls. 4) Ok, go to a desert with a lot of sand. Take a picture of a large mountain that is 30 miles away. Now, move 2 miles laterally and take another picture of the mountain. See much change? 5) It is the same reason why you can't see stars in the daytime and why you can't see out of your house's windows at night when your inside lights are on.

  • What do you think of the answers? You can sign in to give your opinion on the answer.
  • 1 decade ago

    70sChild, please get this straight and don't be foolish about it any more, okay? The basic technology required for a manned flight to the moon was developed in Germany in the late 1930s through the mid 1940s. This technology needed a lot of refinement to make a safe manned flight a reality.

    We worked on that technology through the 1950s and 60s, and made the first manned moon flight in 1969. It all fits together, and if you read all the history and don't let the wackos lie to you, it will be impossible for you to continue to be fooled into believing that the moon missions did not take place.

    The American people were much better educated and more intelligent in the 1960s and 70s than they are now, and it would never have occurred to NASA engineers and managers that 35 years later a bunch of ignorant dolts with nothing to do would come up with a stupid conspiracy theory stating that the moon landings were faked.

    If that had occurred to them, I suspect the engineers would have gone to the trouble to create a larger and more visible object of proof, to compensate for the decline in the quality of the American mind and its education that occurred during and after the Reagan presidency.

    But there is a real physical proof available. The astronauts who landed on the moon left behind reflectors that are used every day by astronomers to measure the irregularities of the moon's orbit. This is done by bouncing laser beams off reflectors at known locations that were left by the astronauts. Ask your science teacher for information about these experiments. You can arrange to see this done with your own eyes.

    Let me put the question to you this way: If you think the moon landings were faked, when did they become "fake?" When did the idea become popular that NASA had invented the idea of an imaginary moon mission and created a huge technological empire to fool people? When was all this fakery done? In the 60s? 70s? 80s?

    And why? What was the point? And how did they fool all the people that reported the news, operated the machinery, built the moon rockets, and watched them take off and land?

    Do you realize that one American in 500 was a part of the Apollo program? Millions of them are still alive. Are they fooling you? Why? If you go out to a football game, look around you. In the stadium there are people who worked on the Apollo program.

    Ask around. You are surrounded by people who know for sure that American astronauts stood on the moon more than 35 years ago.

    Source(s): PhD in astrophysics I was 24 in 1969, and I saw it with my own eyes. A bunch of us radio amateurs tracked the lunar lander with our own equipment, so we know they were there.
  • 1 decade ago

    There is no widespread, rational or mainstream debate regarding the fact that we landed on the moon and returned. Rejoice in the accomplishment. People who are obsessed with these peculiar pre-occupations are burrowing into the same blind holes "Flat-Earth" lunatics dig.

    Re your six points 1. The flag is not blowing in the wind; it is a plasticized cloth supported by a metal frame to make it look as it does. If you look at several pictures taken at different times you'll note that its folds and furls do not change as they would if a breeze were blowing.

    2. The sunlight (without an atmosphere) is extremely intense on the moon, so that very fast camera shutter speeds are required. Fast shutter speeds prevent the recording of relatively dim objects - such as stars.

    3. Do you remember Buzz Aldrin's words just before touch down of Apollo 11? "Pickin up some dust now" as the decent engines blasted away some topsoil.

    4. Shielding radiation from the astronauts and camera film is not rocket science.

    5. Far-away unmanned landers are harder to control than manned vehicles. It takes light (and therefore controlling radio signals) many minutes to get from Mars to Earth and a similar number of minutes to send a return signal from earth to a device attempting to land on Mars. Human control of an unmanned Marsian lander is limited while test pilots flew the Apollo landers in like a hover craft. It is amazing that 28% of Marsian landers made it at all since no last minute (last second) corrections could be made from this distance.

    6. We could do the physics but eye-balling the scene might convince the ordinary person. With little more effort than walking you see that the astronauts could bounce up several feet. If they could demonstrate a jump of say say 5 feet would you be satisfied?

    Oswald killed Kennedy and humans have walked on the moon.

  • 1 decade ago

    Real. The flag has a metal rod at the top to keep it extended. Since the moon has no atmosphere, the glare prohibits seeing stars at the horizon. Mars is a lot further away. The spacesuits are extremely heavy and actually weighed down the astronauts significantly even in a reduced gravity. Why would the gov (NASA) make it up, anyway? Where did all the moon rocks come from? What will Japan find when its mission arrives there? How did they get the picture of the Earth from the moon's surface?

  • Oh yeah ?Is it 240,000 miles there and back each way?Is that right? If true sounds rather far to me.And what about the rocket stages? They fall away on the trip there?So I read the trip back is much easier? due to difference in escaping earths gravity compared to the moons?Im just going on mostly what I remember from years ago Is it not strange that their is no vibrations shaking or loud noise from the last command stage of the rocket in the videosthat the Astronauts are sitting on top of ?It has to be putting out controlled blasts of between 3000 and 5000 degrees correct?And the American Flags on the moon and the other things left behind,

    I would like to see pics or evidence from another source other than our Govt. NASA.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Well, before I do my killer argument today, as all good arguments had been written so far:

    Mars is not the same as the moon. It is even simpler to navigate to Saturn than to get to Mars. Mars has a very eccentric orbit and a high relative inclination to Earth, making reaching it a pretty tough challenge. The moon is also a few hundred times closer to Earth as Mars and still inside our own gravity well - we don't need to calculate 2 or more changes of the sphere of influence for a first trajectory prototype.

    And when you telecommand a spacecraft on the moon, you have only 2.5 seconds communication delay. On Mars, it is about 45 minutes.

    And now, the final argument: Arthur C Clarke once formulated the law, that any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. Does the moon landing feel like magic to you, that you can claim that it is technically impossible to do?

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Just as you got all this information from a TV show explaining these issues there is a TV show that explains the answer to all the questions you asked.

    You can find the answer to the rest of your question if you watch the other documentary, before you make judgements research both sides of the story.

Still have questions? Get answers by asking now.