PDA

View Full Version : What Could the Astronauts Have Done?



Superluminal
2003-Nov-08, 11:02 PM
I remember a hoax special that was on tv many years ago, don't remember who the HBer was, but he said: "If we really went to the moon and NASA really wanted there to be no doubt, the astronauts could have easily done something that would have been visible from Earth. Since they didn't do such a simple thing, it leads to the conclusion that the landings didn't happen." My question is: What in the world could the astronauts have done that we could see from Earth, even with the largest telescopes? And of course it would have to be something that couldn't be done with unmanned landers. Since the HBer never explained what they could have done, I think it was just one of those things they use to plant a seed of doubt in the minds of those who haven't thought about it much.

ToSeek
2003-Nov-08, 11:16 PM
I seem to recall some discussion on here that concluded that if the astronauts brought enough fireworks (or the moral equivalent) to be visible from Earth, they could easily have blown up the LM instead.

Andromeda321
2003-Nov-08, 11:43 PM
Don't they say NASA tracked the missions with Earth-based telescopes? And then the guy watching when Apollo 13 had that explosion actually noticed something happening... don't know if that's true though.

darkhunter
2003-Nov-09, 12:33 AM
Then they would explain everyone who saw it as being in the conspiracy :cry: So we would be back to square one....

Glom
2003-Nov-09, 09:46 AM
Something about magnesium flares.

Of course this reasoning is circular. It works on the assumption that NASA believed it had something to prove.

DALeffler
2003-Nov-09, 04:20 PM
"...the astronauts could have easily done something that would have been visible from Earth. Since they didn't do such a simple thing, it leads to the conclusion that the landings didn't happen."

Well, that leads to the question of whether or not people on the moon could see any evidence on Earth of mankinds presence. I would think with a telescope on the moon one might be able to pick out Earth city lights on a crescent Earth, but naked eye? I dunno...

Doug.

aurora
2003-Nov-09, 04:34 PM
Well, that leads to the question of whether or not people on the moon could see any evidence on Earth of mankinds presence. I would think with a telescope on the moon one might be able to pick out Earth city lights on a crescent Earth, but naked eye? I dunno...


Unlikely.

I just finished reading a book on the Galileo mission, and it recapped one of the Earth flybys when they attempted to determine whether there was life on Earth, assuming no prior knowledge and using only the instruments on Galileo. (which had pretty good cameras)

About the only thing that they could come up with was the atmosphere, which had rather high amounts of methane. In other words, the makeup of our atmosphere would not be stable without life.

darkhunter
2003-Nov-09, 04:48 PM
Well, that leads to the question of whether or not people on the moon could see any evidence on Earth of mankinds presence. I would think with a telescope on the moon one might be able to pick out Earth city lights on a crescent Earth, but naked eye? I dunno...


Unlikely.

I just finished reading a book on the Galileo mission, and it recapped one of the Earth flybys when they attempted to determine whether there was life on Earth, assuming no prior knowledge and using only the instruments on Galileo. (which had pretty good cameras)

About the only thing that they could come up with was the atmosphere, which had rather high amounts of methane. In other words, the makeup of our atmosphere would not be stable without life.

IIRC, the tip off for life was the free oxygen. The methane showed that life included animals (i.e. cow...[burps-to put it politely]) as well.

Here (http://www.unknowncountry.com/news/?id=1158)

here (http://www.spacedaily.com/news/life-02zw.html)

and

here (http://science.nasa.gov/newhome/headlines/ast21may99_1.htm)

jscotti
2003-Nov-09, 11:50 PM
Lets see - they could take pictures of themselves and their equipment on the moon and set up live TV cameras to beam images back to Earth. They could leave scientific equipment that would beam back data to our scientists. They could collect rocks and return them for study back home. They could.... Oh wait, they did all that stuff and yet the hoax true believers are still out there.

Jim.

SpaceTrekkie
2003-Nov-10, 01:50 AM
Lets see - they could take pictures of themselves and their equipment on the moon and set up live TV cameras to beam images back to Earth. They could leave scientific equipment that would beam back data to our scientists. They could collect rocks and return them for study back home. They could.... Oh wait, they did all that stuff and yet the hoax true believers are still out there.

Jim.

Well said. =D> =D> =D> =D> =D>
People who believe these things are so deeply rooted in it that no matter how much eveidence against there believe there is they will NEVER see the truth..at least that is what i see.

Alex W.
2003-Nov-10, 02:47 PM
What should they have done? Drawn a big face with white paint? No obvious marks were left because people would've murdered NASA for allowing it.

DataCable
2003-Nov-10, 04:45 PM
What should they have done? Drawn a big face with white paint? No obvious marks were left because people would've murdered NASA for allowing it.
Woah, Cheezy Childhood TV Flashback (tm) here, to the G.I. Joe episode Lasers in the Night (http://qktheatre.com/summaries/lasers_in_the_night/). (See the closing shots on pg. 3, particularly)

AGN Fuel
2003-Nov-10, 11:24 PM
Don't they say NASA tracked the missions with Earth-based telescopes? And then the guy watching when Apollo 13 had that explosion actually noticed something happening... don't know if that's true though.

Tracking stations around the world followed the Apollo spacecraft to the moon, followed both craft after LM separation & landing and repeated the process on the way back. They also obtained data from the EASEP & ALSEP experiment packages left on the moon.

Analysis of the return delays & Doppler shift of the radio signals allowed the ground crews at these stations to precisely calculate ranging & velocities. These world-wide stations were manned by nationals who had no other allegiance to NASA than the thrill of what was being accomplished.

I've heard the story of the gentleman tracking the spacecraft with a telescope, who noticed a brightening of A13 due to the sunlight relected off the cloud of oxygen ice crystals around the spacecraft after the explosion (I think it is mentioned in Lovell's "Lost Moon"). It sounds feasible, but I haven't read anything more about it than that one reference.

JayUtah
2003-Nov-11, 12:28 AM
Some conspiracists even admit that the amount and type of historical evidence available is consistent with what would reasonably be expected from such a mission. This makes the whole issue of additional proof fairly moot. Conspiracists are already trying to explain away a vast amount of evidence. Asking for more is a red herring.

As has been mentioned, there was no reasonable presumption for the need to provide absurdly convincing evidence of the success of the missions. To require such is either to presume NASA anticipated, or should have anticipated, the arguments of the hoax believers and created specific proofs to defeat them. That in turn presumes NASA could either look into the future and see Bill Kaysing's book and its descendents, or that NASA anticipated discovery of the hoax they knew they were perpetrating. The latter is circular and the former is presumptive.

Conspiracists argue that NASA didn't provide definitive proof because, obviously, they were unable to. They could only provide proof that could be compromised or undermined by some means. Of course, as we've discovered, the problem lies less with NASA's ability or willingness to provide proof and more with the conspiracists' expectations of what that proof should be and what NASA's intentions were.

The conspiracists are also way off base in what they propose as solutions. A passive object would have to have been many hundreds of meters in size to be visible from earth. When would the astronauts -- especially the crew of Apollo 11 -- had time to deploy such an object? Where would an object of such bulk and mass have been carried on the lunar module?

A reflective object would have been visible only if flat enough and aimed precisely enough to correctly reflect sunlight. That too has a number of disproportionate engineering hurdles.

Active objects such as magnesium flares still suffer from the same factors of distance and attenuation. They may seem bright from a mile away at night on Earth, but they aren't very bright from 250,000 miles away against the sunlit lunar surface.

Only a huge explosion, such as that created by a large atomic bomb, would have been visible from Earth. Can you imagine what people would have said? Exploding a nuclear weapon on the moon? Carrying a nuclear weapon in a manned spacecraft over populated areas at launch? Disposition of the weapon during an abort? The SNAP units already caused a great furor among the anti-nuke crowd. There was absolute no chance of getting a nuclear weapon on an Apollo manifest.

So after dispelling the illusions of practicality associated with the typically suggestions, I usually ask what practical proof could have been given, that was not given.

Graham2001
2003-Nov-11, 06:29 AM
Only a huge explosion, such as that created by a large atomic bomb, would have been visible from Earth. Can you imagine what people would have said? Exploding a nuclear weapon on the moon? Carrying a nuclear weapon in a manned spacecraft over populated areas at launch? Disposition of the weapon during an abort? The SNAP units already caused a great furor among the anti-nuke crowd. There was absolute no chance of getting a nuclear weapon on an Apollo manifest.

That does not however mean that the idea was not considered, a subject discussed in this thread:

http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?p=37231#37231

Interestingly the Russian plan was considered as a means of defeating an American who claimed that Russian lunar launches were faked.

Graham

kucharek
2003-Nov-11, 08:10 AM
I've heard the story of the gentleman tracking the spacecraft with a telescope, who noticed a brightening of A13 due to the sunlight relected off the cloud of oxygen ice crystals around the spacecraft after the explosion (I think it is mentioned in Lovell's "Lost Moon"). It sounds feasible, but I haven't read anything more about it than that one reference.

http://images.jsc.nasa.gov/iams/images/pao/AS13/10075503.htm

BTW, there is a new site dedicated to the history of the Honeysuckle Creek tracking station. Have a look at http://www.honeysucklecreek.net/

Harald

captain swoop
2003-Nov-11, 08:35 AM
A Nuclear bobm on the moon wouldn't mean a manned mission ever went though.

kucharek
2003-Nov-11, 08:46 AM
A Nuclear bobm on the moon wouldn't mean a manned mission ever went though.

http://www.rferl.org/nca/features/1999/07/F.RU.990716123233.html

Chertok said that in 1958, the Soviets actually developed a plan to send an atomic bomb to the moon, so that astronomers across the world could photograph its explosion on film.

Chertok said: "That way no one would have doubted that the Soviet Union was capable of landing on the surface of the moon. But the idea was rejected as physicists decided the flash would be so short lived because of the lack of an atmosphere on the moon that it might not register on film."
AFAIK, the US had similar plans for a short time.

Harald

AGN Fuel
2003-Nov-11, 12:18 PM
I've heard the story of the gentleman tracking the spacecraft with a telescope, who noticed a brightening of A13 due to the sunlight relected off the cloud of oxygen ice crystals around the spacecraft after the explosion (I think it is mentioned in Lovell's "Lost Moon"). It sounds feasible, but I haven't read anything more about it than that one reference.

http://images.jsc.nasa.gov/iams/images/pao/AS13/10075503.htm

BTW, there is a new site dedicated to the history of the Honeysuckle Creek tracking station. Have a look at http://www.honeysucklecreek.net/

Harald

You amaze me Harald. :D

Your knowledge of these images is nothing short of remarkable. =D>

kucharek
2003-Nov-11, 12:31 PM
You amaze me Harald. :D

Your knowledge of these images is nothing short of remarkable. =D>

Welcome to the club... (http://www.edmitchellapollo14.com/wwwboard/messages/784.html) 8)

jscotti
2003-Nov-11, 06:21 PM
Some conspiracists even admit that the amount and type of historical evidence available is consistent with what would reasonably be expected from such a mission. This makes the whole issue of additional proof fairly moot. Conspiracists are already trying to explain away a vast amount of evidence. Asking for more is a red herring.


Not just a red herring, but irrellevent, really, to answering the hoax believers. No matter what evidence or how incontrovertible that evidence is (and really, what we have from Apollo is some of the most convincing evidence that could have been mustered), the hoax "true believers" will call it into question. Indeed, dragging our "favorite" hoax believers to the moon by their ear and showing them the evidence in person would do no good to convince them..... Their faith in the hoax transcends facts and reason.

Jim.

Mig
2003-Nov-11, 08:48 PM
My hometown lies in valley. There is a smallish but prominent mountain to the north. When I was much, much younger and needful of such things, I decided to make a mark. I climbed half way up the face of the mountain, which is composed of a clay-y, silt-y, finely ground shale material. Once at an acceptable height above the valley I began to drag my feet like a skier thereby inscribing a geometric pattern into the mountain's face. As the pitch of the mountain is extremely steep, from the valley the pattern would look like graffiti on a wall. (An unfortunately apt comparison, I'm afraid). Indeed, the pattern was visible from town, and it lasted a few days.

On the Moon, a figure in the regolith would be well-nigh permanent.

An astronauts should have done like this. Oh, yes I hear you say, but, the figure would have had to be huge to been seen from earth. It would have taken many, many man hours to create, the effort and logistics of the undertaking would have been enormously prohibitive...

Yes, I say. All true, if the astronaut had wanted to return to Earth. But, if you have but one life to give...

And, we would have our proof.

Glom
2003-Nov-11, 08:54 PM
Yes, I say. All true, if the astronaut had wanted to return to Earth. But, if you have but one life to give...

And, we would have our proof.

Not really. Conspiracists would say that an automated roving vehicle did it. And certainly, the conspiracists would have gotten arrogant indeed if they believe a life should be sacrificed to respond to their bartsibrel.

Mig
2003-Nov-11, 09:10 PM
Glom wrote:


And certainly, the conspiracists would have gotten arrogant indeed if they believe a life should be sacrificed to respond to their bartsibrel

Ah, but their "bartsibrel" is our "bartsibrel".

Imagine the satisfaction of being able to lead your young son or daughter out into the yard, point skyward, and say:

"There is our proof. There is where astronaut X, gave his all, his very life to satisfy not just our tiny minds, but the tiny minds of all the inhabitants of the Great Planet Earth.

"Now brush your teeth and go to bed."

JayUtah
2003-Nov-11, 09:13 PM
I personally don't plan to sacrifice my life to satisfy the tiny-minded, even if such a thing (i.e., satisfying the tiny-minded) were possible.

Mig
2003-Nov-11, 09:17 PM
Then we shall ask someone else.

Thank you for considering it though, Jay.

Glom
2003-Nov-11, 09:23 PM
How about the Dark Lord? He's old. How much longer has he got to live anyway?

Mig
2003-Nov-11, 09:37 PM
Good idea, Glom!

Who was it that bought the Saturn V design specs, on e-bay? Get them on the line-- we've got work to do...

sts60
2003-Nov-12, 01:57 PM
...And, we would have our proof.Mig, buddy, you haven't been paying attention. We have our proof.

Waarthog
2003-Nov-12, 03:18 PM
we've got work to do...

Are you volunteering to make the mark? :roll:

Sister Ray
2003-Nov-12, 06:39 PM
Ah, but their "bartsibrel" is our "bartsibrel".

Imagine the satisfaction of being able to lead your young son or daughter out into the yard, point skyward, and say:

"There is our proof. There is where astronaut X, gave his all, his very life to satisfy not just our tiny minds, but the tiny minds of all the inhabitants of the Great Planet Earth.

"Now brush your teeth and go to bed."

I found some pictures of the moon landings amongst my stepfather's possesion when we moved.

There's also that whole two objects of different density falling at the same rate video.

I can't imagine much satisfaction in pointing to the sky and saying: "Man never went to the moon! The Apollo programs were a hoax. We're doomed to die when the sun swallows our earth."

Mig
2003-Nov-12, 10:51 PM
sts60 wrote:

Mig, buddy, you haven't been paying attention. We have our proof

waarthog wrote:

Are you volunteering to make the mark?

Sister Ray wrote:

I found some pictures of the moon landings amongst my stepfather's possesion when we moved.

There's also that whole two objects of different density falling at the same rate video.

I can't imagine much satisfaction in pointing to the sky and saying: "Man never went to the moon! The Apollo programs were a hoax. We're doomed to die when the sun swallows our earth."


Sheesh, people!

Mig
2003-Nov-12, 11:14 PM
In a world without emoticons, Mig labors in vain.

In future I will be more careful with my remarks, so as not offend those who need spoon-feeding.

To jump start this new campaign, let me state for the record, that I have not in my four decades of life, ever doubted the achievements of the Apollo astronauts. Nobody who knows me would ever suspect me of harboring such doubts.

One of the things which brought me to BA was an opportunity to watch HBers die under the withering glare of JayUtah's erudition.

While I have rarely felt qualified to contribute in any meaningful way to the real discussions covered, I have occasionally felt free to throw in my spare change. I AM NOT qualified to make the kind of authoritative statements Jay makes. Very few of us, here, are. I don't try to pretend by speed-googling and then looking smug.

I, humbly, accept my position among the groundlings.

Sister Ray
2003-Nov-12, 11:34 PM
Oh, I wasn't offended at all. I come across enough weird arguments in the world that that type of logic doesn't offend me anymore. (Don't ask.)

Moose
2003-Nov-13, 02:59 PM
I feel compelled to point out that the thought of deliberately making a large, permanent mark on the moon, for such a ridiculous reason, frankly nauseates me.

There's a concept in responsible off-roading called "tread lightly", where you are careful to cause as little damage as possible to the environment you're enjoying. You're going to make tire tracks, of course, but you don't cut across the side of a hill, as that one pass can easily erode and eventually denude the hillside.

In my scouting days, the sentiment was expressed to me as "Take nothing but pictures and memories, leave nothing behind".

It was necessary to leave traces of humanity behind on the moon in order to go in the first place. The LM descent stages, for example, had to be left behind, and the ascent stages were crashed into the moon because they couldn't safely be returned or jettisoned in a more effective way.

But the unavoidable damage caused by our presence on the moon was limited in scope, and minimized where possible.

To detonate a nuke on the moon? To make a massive mark on the moon that is readily visible from the earth? Either concept is sickening.

Mig, you need to come to grips with the fact that there were marks of humanity's presence, "visible" from the moon, for anyone with the knowledge to look. The radio transmissions made by the Apollo astronauts were tracked from earth by many upon many independant and even amateur radio telescopes, all over the world. Tracking a faint radio source in space is not anything like dialing into your local FM station, but it is very possible to do. The Apollo transmissions could not have come from orbit. There is plenty of information on this site and on Clavius as to why this is the case.

Think of it this way: Few people have the knowledge or skill to perform neurosurgery, or to even understand more than the basics of what is happening. And yet, successful brain surgery has been done.

Most people, even most pilots, don't have the knowledge or skill to successfully complete a carrier landing. Carrier landings have certainly been done.

Just because you don't have the knowledge or ability to locate and track faint radio sources originating from space doesn't mean that others haven't done exactly that.

Just because you don't understand the engineering that was involved in Apollo, or in space flight in general doesn't mean that Apollo didn't happen.

[Note, I'm not pointing fingers, those last paragraphs were phrased specifically, but were meant in the more general sense.]

There are a rare number of neurosurgeons. There are a larger number of carrier-qualified pilots. One hundred thousand people were involved to some degree in making Apollo happen. Hobbyists all over the world tracked the progress of the missions by the faint radio transmissions, and others even were able to photograph the CSM in transit to, or from, the moon. Independant scientists from all over the world, I imagine Russians included, examined rocks brought back from the moon.

There is no conspiracy, Mig, except in the minds of the HBs.

I hope this helps.

kucharek
2003-Nov-13, 03:14 PM
It was necessary to leave traces of humanity behind on the moon in order to go in the first place. The LM descent stages, for example, had to be left behind, and the ascent stages were crashed into the moon because they couldn't safely be returned or jettisoned in a more effective way.
The ascent stages were crashed to cause defined seismic waves that could be sensed by the seismometers placed on the moon.
And every ounce of unnecessary weight was jettisioned from the ascent stage before lift-off, including plenty of garbage, waste collection bags etc.
Actually, the first EVA photo taken by Neil Armstrong already shows a jettision bag...
http://www.hq.nasa.gov/alsj/a11/as11-40-5850.jpg

But this was justified.
And, today archeologists are much happier with old garbage piles than castles etc. Garbage tells a lot about everydays life of people. 8-[

Harald

Waarthog
2003-Nov-13, 05:40 PM
In future I will be more careful with my remarks, so as not offend those who need spoon-feeding.
Offense is the wrong word. Since you appear to have read the board, you know that in times past there have been people coming here spouting ridiculous nonsense in dead earnestness. Sarcasm and satire are hard to portray in print, particularly in a venue where some people act as I have just described. Your post seems no different from others who have fervently believed their ideas to be true. Without what you call "spoon feeding" there is little way to discern your satire from the others foolishness.

I AM NOT qualified to make the kind of authoritative statements Jay makes. Very few of us, here, are.
This would depend entirely on the subject about which the statement is made. The professions and interests of the posters on this board are quite varied and can go to exeptional depths of knowledge. Jay is an exceptional case precisely because of the number of subjects to which he can speak with authority, coupled with a sharp logical mind and a gift for writing.* Even so just about everyone on this board can speak authoritatively on something. When the subject arises, there is no reason not to. If you think you have something meaningful to say, do it.

I don't try to pretend by speed-googling and then looking smug.
No, your smugness comes across by hinting that those who did not catch your satire are idiots.

*As to my membership in the JayUtah fan club, the check is in the mail.

JayUtah
2003-Nov-13, 06:42 PM
As to my membership in the JayUtah fan club, the check is in the mail.

Your T-shirt is on the way.

There are a few subjects upon which I can speak with professional authority: engineering and computers being two that come immediately to mind. There are many other subjects upon which I can speak with some authority, such as photography and studio lighting. By that I mean I know more than most, but knowledge more acute than mine is not hard to find. It is not the amount of material I know that makes me well suited to this discussion, merely the specific choices of topics. Not many people, for example, study projective geometry.

mr. show
2003-Nov-13, 06:58 PM
As to my membership in the JayUtah fan club, the check is in the mail.

Your T-shirt is on the way.

There are a few subjects upon which I can speak with professional authority: engineering and computers being two that come immediately to mind. There are many other subjects upon which I can speak with some authority, such as photography and studio lighting. By that I mean I know more than most, but knowledge more acute than mine is not hard to find. It is not the amount of material I know that makes me well suited to this discussion, merely the specific choices of topics. Not many people, for example, study projective geometry.

if i remember right, you're not too bad of a surfer either!

JayUtah
2003-Nov-13, 07:06 PM
Never tried surfing, unless "boogie-boarding" counts (which I suspect it doesn't). Remember, I live in a desert. Not a lot of surfing opportunities.

mr. show
2003-Nov-13, 07:10 PM
Never tried surfing, unless "boogie-boarding" counts (which I suspect it doesn't). Remember, I live in a desert. Not a lot of surfing opportunities.

hehe just a little Point Break humor :lol:

BigGig
2003-Nov-14, 12:27 AM
Hey I want a T shirt too!

There are also libraries, the net, videos etc. Which allow us to research and discover. We may not always know the specific mechanics or properties but there are means to give yourself as much knowledge as you want. That way you can study the evidence and see what makes sense. For everything else .... just ask Jay :D

We have all the evidence we need to know the Luna landings took place. Plus, and I don't know if this was covered, the astronauts had very specific missions and time frames which needed to be completed. They didn't have the time nor the resources to go off making huge tracks in the ground or some other act of proof for a bunch of HBers 30 years in the future! They obviously didn't think there would be any need!

DALeffler
2003-Nov-14, 03:04 AM
What the heck is projective geometry? I'm kinna scared to even type that into google... :o

Superluminal
2003-Nov-14, 03:47 AM
Kucharek wrote that archeoligists are more interested in garbage than castles. I've wondered: The next time we go to the moon, somewhere will there will be a scientist wanting them to bring back a bag of old Apollo astronaut poop? :-k

jrkeller
2003-Nov-14, 06:54 AM
Don't they say NASA tracked the missions with Earth-based telescopes? And then the guy watching when Apollo 13 had that explosion actually noticed something happening... don't know if that's true though.

You mean like this

http://www.eclipsetours.com/sat/farout.html

or

http://www.eclipsetours.com/maley.html

or

http://images.jsc.nasa.gov/luceneweb/fullimage.jsp

or

http://images.jsc.nasa.gov/luceneweb/caption.jsp

Alex W.
2003-Nov-14, 10:37 AM
Yes, I say. All true, if the astronaut had wanted to return to Earth. But, if you have but one life to give...

And, we would have our proof.

Not really. Conspiracists would say that an automated roving vehicle did it. And certainly, the conspiracists would have gotten arrogant indeed if they believe a life should be sacrificed to respond to their bartsibrel.

The same HBs who take offense at the idea of a remote-control camera filming the LM takeoff? :D

Conrad
2003-Nov-14, 04:21 PM
I remember a hoax special that was on tv many years ago, don't remember who the HBer was, but he said: "If we really went to the moon and NASA really wanted there to be no doubt, the astronauts could have easily done something that would have been visible from Earth. Since they didn't do such a simple thing, it leads to the conclusion that the landings didn't happen." My question is: What in the world could the astronauts have done that we could see from Earth, even with the largest telescopes? And of course it would have to be something that couldn't be done with unmanned landers. Since the HBer never explained what they could have done, I think it was just one of those things they use to plant a seed of doubt in the minds of those who haven't thought about it much.

As I recall, the astronauts left behind reflective mirrors that can be used even today by astronomers on Earth. And in another thread on BABB, sorry but can't remember the details, someone posted a link to a photo that shows the elongated shadow of a Lunar Lander.
As others above have mentioned, the very last thing on the minds of NASA staff at the time would have been activity that "proved" the Apollo missions took place. Any activity that could only be done by human hands, yet still be visible from Earth would have involved so much labour that nothing else would have been done. It might well have needed a larger Apollo Crew in a larger vehicle, with all the cost and delay that involves. And at the end of it the HB's would come up with some mental wriggle that dismissed it out of hand.

JayUtah
2003-Nov-14, 05:04 PM
What the heck is projective geometry?

LOL, take a "math anxiety" pill and type it in. Projective geometry is the geometry behind perspective. If you understand how a vanishing point works in a perspective drawing, you've got the first set of fundamentals in your noggin -- at least in an intuitive way.

And consequently it's also the geometry behind how a camera works. That is, how objects in a three-dimensional scene are rendered in a certain way on a two-dimensional film image plane. The most obvious and intuitive element of this "projective transformation" is that parallelism is not preserved. Lines that are parallel in the three-dimensional affine space (i.e., the real world as it exists, not as we see it) are generally not parallel in the projective space (i.e., the world we see on our retinas and on film). If two lines are not parallel, then they must intersect.

There is a need to go beyond the intuitive notions of projective geometry, which aren't that hard to understand, and start dealing with it quantitatively. Most people never need to do this; the intuitive understanding suffices. However, with proper technique and understanding of the theory, projective geometry forms the basis of the mathematical elements of photographic analysis. These are elements of which the conspiracy theorists are utterly unaware, and the necessity of which, some conspiracy theorists (viz., Bennett and Percy) have had the temerity to actually deny.

By understanding in both a theoretical fashion and in a quantified fashion how these projective transformations work, we can "undo" the transformations and arrive at a much better understanding of the original scenes from which photographs were made. Unfortunately the projective transformation is lossy when it's made from a 3D space into a 2D space. Obviously you've lost a whole dimension. This is why each photograph is usually a special case. And it's also why you have things like the gnomon to provide a known reference. With that known reference you get a sort of mathematical toehold on an underconstrained problem.

In short, it's simply another way to show scientifically that the conspiracy theorists have absolutely no clue what they're talking about.

JayUtah
2003-Nov-14, 05:06 PM
...wanting them to bring back a bag of old Apollo astronaut poop? :-k

I'm just wondering how much Neil Armstrong's poop will fetch on eBay.

jrkeller
2003-Nov-14, 05:08 PM
In short, it's simply another way to show scientifically that the conspiracy theorists have absolutely no clue what they're talking about.



Jay,

You are being too nice.

JayUtah
2003-Nov-14, 05:21 PM
I think it's important to keep in mind that while many things can be used as evidence of the astronauts' achievement -- LRRRs, photographs, etc. -- none of them was especially intended as that kind of proof. NASA has said, "The proof is in the pictures," and words to that effect, but it's doubtful conspiracists hear that statement in the manner in which it was intended. NASA is not saying, "Here's the proof that we designed from the start to be the evidence of our claims."

The manner in which those items serve as evidence is a type of inquiry that conspiracists have entirely rejected.

Conspiracists look for the smoking gun. They want one bit of evidence, interpreted simply, that settles the question once and for all. This saves them from the normal historian's task of weighing contradictory evidence and assessing the relative plausibility of different hypotheses.

Conspiracists demand that our proof be airtight. If they can come up with an alternative explanation for the evidence -- even if it's purely conjectural -- then they believe they have refuted the evidence. And so when presented with moonrocks, photographs, radio transmissions, etc., they have elaborate conjectural explanations that otherwise explain the features of that evidence that appear to lend authority to the NASA explanation. Whether these have any substance to them is irrelevant, in their minds. They say, "That's not proof; we can show there was another way to obtain it." And far too often we get suckered into that discussion, where we tacitly accept the burden of proof not only to show that, say, the moon rocks weren't faked, but also that they can't have been faked.

Conjectural alternatives are not refutory. They can't be, as a moment's thought demonstrates, because there are an infinite number of conjectural alternatives for any given hypothesis -- even those that are widely held.

The way in which the LRRRs, rocks, photographs, and other observations are proof is in that when NASA's explanation for how those came about, and the conspiracists' explanation for how they came about, are put side by side, the relative strengths and weaknesses of each alternative are made starkly apparent. It is simply far more plausible -- "anomalies" and "inconsistencies" notwithstanding -- that the Apollo evidence was produced by Apollo missions, and not by some unknown, uncharacterized, unsubstantiated hoax.

That is how historians work. NASA's mistake is in assuming that the conspiracists think like historians. They assume conspiracy theorists understand the historical method and are following evolved historical analytical procedures. This is why NASA supplies the photographs etc. as proof. By the historical method there is no question that the evidence is best explained by the authenticity of the missions. But for the conspiracy theorists -- who try to prove their theories by the "smoking gun" method and therefore expect NASA to do the same -- the proof is unsatisfactory.

informant
2003-Nov-14, 05:32 PM
You seem to be suggesting that there might be a better way for NASA to deal with the conspiracists... Are you?

JayUtah
2003-Nov-14, 06:15 PM
You seem to be suggesting that there might be a better way for NASA to deal with the conspiracists... Are you?

Not necessarily. I understand why NASA's efforts fail to make a dent in the conspiracy theorists' statements. But I suppose it's premature to say that NASA doesn't understand this, and that's why their statements do not appear to have the desired effect. The desired effect may be different than what I would desire.

One can, as I have, address the conspiracy arguments at face value and show exhaustively why they do not hold. NASA, on the other hand, by presenting evidence that would be convincing to a bona fide historian, could be offering a subtext that says, "See, these authors aren't behaving like rational people."

BigGig
2003-Nov-15, 01:30 AM
I have rarely come across a HBer that wasn't rude, loud, insulting and lacking in scientific and/or common sense. I think their biggest ego boost is fooling the masses into believing them. I don't think there could be anything NASA could do that would stop them ranting and raving. I actually don't believe that many of them believe their own rubbish. NASA could present all the evidence and defend themselves, however, the people who are willing to reason don't need any extra evidence anyway. The people who the evidence would be directed to the most, are the people who would discount it. At the end of the day NASA are correct in not giving these people recognition. THEY know they went to the moon, so why should they care what the HBers think or say, it is not really damaging NASA by refusing to go into a great debate over the whole thing.

ignorant_ape
2003-Nov-17, 04:51 PM
NASA is in a ` catch 22 ` re HB idiots

if they fail to respond to EVERY kook then the cry goes out ; " hoody hoo - we got nasa scared , they cant answer us "

if they do refute a wo woo claim then its : " why are they being defenisive - what are they trying to hide "

YRS - APE

SiriMurthy
2003-Nov-17, 07:11 PM
IMO, the only proof necessary and sufficient is the sample rocks we brought home from Moon. Can't fake that.

AGN Fuel
2003-Nov-17, 11:58 PM
I have rarely come across a HBer that wasn't rude, loud, insulting and lacking in scientific and/or common sense. I think their biggest ego boost is fooling the masses into believing them. I don't think there could be anything NASA could do that would stop them ranting and raving. I actually don't believe that many of them believe their own rubbish. NASA could present all the evidence and defend themselves, however, the people who are willing to reason don't need any extra evidence anyway. The people who the evidence would be directed to the most, are the people who would discount it. At the end of the day NASA are correct in not giving these people recognition. THEY know they went to the moon, so why should they care what the HBers think or say, it is not really damaging NASA by refusing to go into a great debate over the whole thing.


I think the key does not rest with swaying the HB's themselves. They have their own agendas. The key is to have the facts marshalled so that when the lay-person who has heard these arguments and may not have the scientific background (or time) to weed out the techno-babble, can be shown where the hoax arguments fail.

The 'side by side' comparison is a very powerful weapon. In discussions, presenting the hoax arguments, pointing out where they err, and then listing the evidence consistent with having achieved the landings (rocks, thousands of photographs, hundreds of hours of film/TV footage, worldwide tracking [amateur and professional], the LRRR's, the Russians, the EASEP & ALSEP results, the scale of the program.....) is most effective. The weight of evidence as displayed in a side-by-side comparison is overwhelming.

I admit also that I have not been above referring the the qualities and integrity of the astronauts themselves - men who typically test flew experimental aircraft for a living, many of whom had long & distinguished careers in the armed forces, who subjected themselves to the extreme rigours of astronaut training, many of whom had fervent spiritual beliefs. I find it inconsistent that such men would agree en masse to be party to a lifelong fraud - not just to the American prople, but to the people of the world.

I read recently that during his cameo role in Apollo 13, Jim Lovell was asked to wear the insignia of an admiral as in the film he greeted the returning astronauts on the deck of the Iwo Jima. Lovell rejected this request as it was a rank that he had not obtained in his naval career, preferring to wear instead the insignia of his attained rank of captain. If true, this displays an extraordinary integrity that is simply not consistent with the charges of hoax levelled at him and his colleagues.

(Hops down off soapbox......)

BigGig
2003-Nov-18, 12:24 AM
I agree, presenting the evidence to the average interested layman would be a good thing. And a real debate over the whole topic would be welcome(we could get Eddie McGuire and Catriona Rowntree to host it!). I don't think NASA would spend the effort in doing something like that themselves however. I was actually thinking of presenting a talk at my old Uni, however time/work/family doesn't allow me plus I would have to really study the whole thing in detail to give the evidence justice. In other words it's in the too hard basket!

I also agree with your comments on the astronauts and gives more credence to the fact that these guys were consumate proffessionals who, to a great degree, put aside their ellation of actually standing on the moon and just got on with the mission. How do you get to the moon and not jump around like a lunatic (pardon the pun) full of excitement and totally forgetting about what you are there for!

Incidentally are you taking the national IQ test today?

Cheers

Gig

AGN Fuel
2003-Nov-18, 01:08 AM
I agree, presenting the evidence to the average interested layman would be a good thing.

I'm lucky enough to work part-time at a public access observatory and one of my roles is talking to the general public about astronomy. Whenever the issue comes up, I do my absolute utmost to ensure that the audience goes away not just convinced of the veracity of the Apollo programme, but actually enthused about it. When I know I'm going to talk about Apollo, as the lights go down I open up with a recording of the Apollo 10 launch at high volume (up to 11! :lol: ) - gets the juices flowing!! 8)


And a real debate over the whole topic would be welcome(we could get Eddie McGuire and Catriona Rowntree to host it!)

"Are you sure that's your answer? Cislunar radiation is fatal? Sure you don't want to phone a friend??" :-k


I was actually thinking of presenting a talk at my old Uni, however time/work/family doesn't allow me plus I would have to really study the whole thing in detail to give the evidence justice. In other words it's in the too hard basket!

You should! It's a topic that fascinates people and I am sure you would get a good audience. \:D/


How do you get to the moon and not jump around like a lunatic (pardon the pun) full of excitement and totally forgetting about what you are there for!

Months & months & months of training for the most part! Gene Cernan in particular seemed to be relish the experience to the full, but it is hard to imagine that any of them were unaffected while there. Al Bean of course felt compelled to ensure that his memories were preserved in art. Man - how much fun would it have been though?! 8)


Incidentally are you taking the national IQ test today?

Gotta study. Only replying now because I'm at work!! :lol: :lol: :lol:
Best of luck if you're going to give it a bash, though!

Madcat
2003-Nov-20, 06:00 AM
...wanting them to bring back a bag of old Apollo astronaut poop?

I'm just wondering how much Neil Armstrong's poop will fetch on eBay.
_________________

I wonder if that stuff's still around. They did all kinds of tests on it, right? :-? :wink: