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Apollo's Lunar Laser Ranging Retroreflector


Guest Mark Valenti
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Guest Mark Valenti

According to NASA, the Apollo 11 crew left behind an experiment consisting of a 2-foot-wide array of 100 mirrors, called the Lunar Laser Ranging Retroreflector Array. It's still performing well today, nearly 40 years later.

A laser emitted from an observatory is aimed at the array and reflected back to the point of origin so accurately that the incoming pulse is just a single photon. Based on the timing of that pulse, the Moon's exact position can be calculated within an error margin of a few centimeters.

The obtained data indicates that the Moon may have a liquid core and confirms that the Moon is spiraling away from Earth at a rate of 3.8 cm each year, an effect attributed to ocean tides.

McDonald Observatory in Texas is a main observation site which also utilizes later arrays left by Apollos 14 and 15.

NASA and the National Science Foundation are funding a New Mexico facility, to be called the Apache Point Observatory Lunar Laser-ranging Operation (APOLLO) which, utilizing a 3.5-meter telescope, will improve accuracy by tenfold.

For those who doubt the historical truth of manned lunar landings, the Texas facility is on record as welcoming anyone who wants to see the experiment in action. McDonald Observatory is located in the Davis Mountains, 450 miles west of Austin, Texas.

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According to NASA, the Apollo 11 crew left behind an experiment consisting of a 2-foot-wide array of 100 mirrors, called the Lunar Laser Ranging Retroreflector Array. It's still performing well today, nearly 40 years later.

A laser emitted from an observatory is aimed at the array and reflected back to the point of origin so accurately that the incoming pulse is just a single photon. Based on the timing of that pulse, the Moon's exact position can be calculated within an error margin of a few centimeters.

The obtained data indicates that the Moon may have a liquid core and confirms that the Moon is spiraling away from Earth at a rate of 3.8 cm each year, an effect attributed to ocean tides.

McDonald Observatory in Texas is a main observation site which also utilizes later arrays left by Apollos 14 and 15.

NASA and the National Science Foundation are funding a New Mexico facility, to be called the Apache Point Observatory Lunar Laser-ranging Operation (APOLLO) which, utilizing a 3.5-meter telescope, will improve accuracy by tenfold.

For those who doubt the historical truth of manned lunar landings, the Texas facility is on record as welcoming anyone who wants to see the experiment in action. McDonald Observatory is located in the Davis Mountains, 450 miles west of Austin, Texas.

Mark...your first three words are the key to this:

"ACCORDING TO NASA".

NASA also claims the Apollo photos are genuine.

So much for the claim of the Lunar Mirror experiment!

If Apollo 11 did not go to the moon, they could not

have left the experiment; if there is one perhaps

it was left by an unmanned mission like Surveyor.

Jack

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Guest Mark Valenti

Jack, it's possible that such an experiment could be dropped by an unmanned vehicle. But I'd be willing to bet the facility would welcome you if you ever felt such a trip was worth your time.

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Mark,

The LRRRs left by Apollo 11, 14 and 15 by themselves are not proof of a manned landing - though they support it when all the evidence is weighed up.

As Jack mentioned, some claim they were landed there with robotic probes. The Soviets did with their Lunokhod 1 and 2 probes (they were initially able to get a return reflection from Lunokhod 1, but the last reflection was back in the early 70s). That's possible but you have to consider some things with regard to that premise:

- The presence of the Apollo astronauts allowed precise placement and alignment of the LRRRs; this is why they are preferred to the reflector on Lunokhod 2.

- The astronauts were able to ensure the LRRRs were clean and free of dirt, again why they are preferred over the Soviet reflector.

- The LM was able to carry a larger reflector than the Soviet unmanned vehicles.

- There were no known lunar robotic vehicles launched by NASA.

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