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Apollo 17 Gallery


Apollo Astronauts Tested Lunar Rover Deployment System At The Marshall Center

Apollo Astronauts Tested Lunar Rover Deployment System At The Marshall Center

Seven astronauts inspected the Lunar Roving Vehicle at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, Ala., where the rover was designed and tested. All were members of Apollo 16 and Apollo 17 prime, backup or support crews (from left to right): John Young, Apollo 16 commander; Eugene Cernan, Apollo 17 commander; Charles Duke, Apollo 16 Lunar Module pilot; Fred Haise, Apollo 16 backup commander; Anthony England, Charles Fullerton and Donald Peterson, all support crewmen. The men attended a half-day training session on the lunar rover deployment system. During the flight to the moon, the rover had to be folded. After lunar touchdown, the astronauts deployed the rover with a system of ropes and pulleys. An LRV qualification test model was used in the deployment exercise at the Marshall Center. (Nov. 9, 1971, 0-25449)


Suit Check

Suit Check

Commander Eugene Cernan conducted a final flight suit fit check at the ILC industries Incorporated plant at Dover, Delaware. Cernan was the first Apollo 17 crew member to drive the lunar rover developed by Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. (Mar. 6, 1972, 72-H-250)


Lunar Rover Training

Lunar Rover Training

Apollo 17 Commander Eugene Cernan removed a traverse gravimeter training mockup from the lunar rover for deployment during extravehicular activity training at the Kennedy Space Center, Fla. In addition to developing rovers for use on the moon, The Boeing Company and NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Ala. built rovers that could be used on Earth so that the astronauts could practice lunar exploration activities. (Aug. 4, 1972, 0-31664)


Apollo 17 Preflight Testing

Apollo 17 Preflight Testing

Apollo 17 Commander Eugene Cernan and Lunar Module Pilot Harrison Schmitt participated in the Lunar Roving Vehicle and the Communications Relay Unit mission simulation. Support Team Astronaut Gordon Fullerton, standing left, discussed test procedures to be performed in the high bay of the Manned Spacecraft Operations Building at Kennedy Space Center, Fla. The Lunar Module ascent and descent stages also received preflight checkout in preparation for the sixth U.S. manned lunar landing mission. The lunar rover was developed by the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. (Aug. 15, 1972, GRIN-000640)


Saturn V Roll Out To Launch Pad

Saturn V Roll Out To Launch Pad

Apollo 17 astronauts Lunar Module Pilot Harrison Schmitt, left, Command Module Pilot Ronald Evans, center, and Commander Eugene Cernan, right, photographed during the launch pad roll out of the Saturn V rocket built by the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center and its contractors. (Aug. 28, 1972, 0-34812)


Apollo 17 Crew And Lunar Rover Trainer

Apollo 17 Crew And Lunar Rover Trainer

The Apollo 17 crew photographed after the Saturn V was moved to Pad A, Complex 39. Apollo 17 Commander Eugene Cernan was at the controls of the one-G Lunar Vehicle trainer used to simulate lunar rover operations on the moon’s surface. With Cernan are Lunar Module Pilot Harrison Schmitt, left and Command Module Pilot Ronald Evans. The Saturn V and Lunar Roving Vehicle were both developed under the direction of the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. (Aug. 28, 1972. 034231 and 73-19534.)


Apollo 17 Dress Rehearsal

Apollo 17 Dress Rehearsal

Apollo 17 Commander Eugene Cernan, a veteran of the Gemini 9 and Apollo 10 missions, suited up in the astronaut quarters in the Manned Spacecraft Operations Building at Kennedy Space Center, Fla., in preparation for the Countdown Demonstration Test, a week-long dress rehearsal for launch that cleared the way for liftoff of Apollo 17 on the Saturn V rocket developed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. (Nov. 21, 1972, 72-H-1463)


Countdown Demonstration

Countdown Demonstration

Apollo 17 Command Module Pilot Ronald Evans suited up in preparation for the final portion of the week-long countdown demonstration test. The test served as a dress rehearsal for the launch and its successful completion cleared the way for the Apollo 17 mission to be launched on the Saturn V rocket developed by the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. (Nov. 21, 1972, 72-H-1464)


Geologist Prepares for Lunar Exploration

Geologist Prepares for Lunar Exploration

Lunar Module Pilot Harrison Schmitt donned his spacesuit before the Apollo 17 launch. Harrison, who holds a doctorate in geology, became the first scientist to explore the lunar surface. The lunar rover developed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., made it possible for Harrison and his fellow lunar explorer, Commander Eugene Cernan, to set a record for the most time spend exploring the lunar surface. (Nov. 21, 1972, 72-H-1465)


Saturn V on Launch Pad Before Last Apollo Mission

Saturn V on Launch Pad Before Last Apollo Mission

The Apollo 17 Saturn V launch vehicle poised beneath a full moon on Launch Pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center, Fla. during launch countdown. The Saturn V was developed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. (Dec. 6, 1972, GPN-2000-000636 and 72C-5901)


Shepard Helped Schmitt Suit Up

Shepard Helped Schmitt Suit Up

During prelaunch suiting operations, Apollo 17 Lunar Module Pilot Harrison Schmitt shared a moment of relaxation with astronaut Alan Shepard, who was the first American launched into space on a Redstone Jupiter rocket developed at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. Schmitt was preparing to ride to space on another Marshall Center rocket, the Saturn V, the largest rocket ever built. (Dec. 6, 1972, GPN-2000-001862 and 72P-0547)


The Last Saturn V Lunar Launch

The Last Saturn V Lunar Launch

The last launch of a Saturn V on a lunar mission took place at 12:33 a.m. EST on Dec. 7, 1972 at Kennedy Space Center, Fla. The Saturn carried the Apollo 17 crew Eugene Cernan, Ronald Evans and Harrison Schmitt on the last Apollo mission to the moon. The Saturn V launch vehicle was developed by the NASA Marshall Space and its contractors. In 1973, the Saturn V would be launched one more time to carry the Skylab space station to low-Earth orbit. (Dec. 7, 1972, 0-35796)


Saturn V Night Launch

Saturn V Night Launch

Liftoff of the Apollo 17 Saturn V moon Rocket from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, Kennedy Space Center, Fla., at 12:33 a.m., EST on Dec. 7, 1972. Apollo 17, the final lunar landing mission, was the first and only night launch of a Saturn V rocket. (Dec. 7, 1972, GPN-2000-001150 and S72-55070)


The Blue Marble

The Blue Marble

This famous Earth photo, known as The Blue Marble, was captured by the Apollo 17 astronauts on the same day that they left Earth riding on a Saturn V rocket developed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. It is one of the most frequently requested NASA photos and became part of the official Earth Day flag. This was the first time an Apollo trajectory made it possible to photograph the South polar ice cap. Note the heavy cloud cover in the Southern Hemisphere. Almost the entire coastline of Africa is clearly visible. The Arabian Peninsula can be seen at the Northeastern edge of Africa. The large island off the coast of Africa is the Malagasy Republic. The Asian mainland is on the horizon toward the Northeast. (Dec. 7, 1972, AS17-148-22727)


Apollo Landing Sites

Apollo Landing Sites

A photo, taken by the Apollo 11 crew on their way home from the moon, showed both the first and lunar landing sites. The first manned lunar landing, Apollo 11 on July 20, 1969, occurred at the southwestern part of the Sea of Tranquility. Apollo 17, the final Apollo mission, touched down in the Taurus-Littrow area, a combination mountainous highland and lowlands valley region. The Apollo 17 astronauts took advantage of the lunar roving vehicle developed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. to explore the rough terrain at Taurus-Littrow. This view of the moon from a distance of 16,000 kilometers (10,000 miles) was photographed after the Apollo 11 crew had fired their engines on the far side of the moon to place them in the correct trajectory for return to Earth. Approximately one-half of the moon’s far side (which cannot be seen from Earth) is the lighter shaded, right side of the sphere to the right of the Seas of Crisis and Fertility. To the left, of the dotted line, the darker side of the sphere is visible from Earth as the right half of the moon. (035788)


Touchdown at Taurus-Littrow

Touchdown at Taurus-Littrow

The lunar module touched down at Taurus-Littrow on Dec. 12, 1972. This mountainous highlands region with large boulders was more accessible because the Apollo 17 astronauts could drive to geological stations in the lunar rover developed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. Scientific objectives of the Apollo 17 mission included geological surveying and sampling of materials and surface features in a preselected area of the Taurus-Littrow region, deploying and activating surface experiments, and conducting in-flight experiments and photographic tasks. The astronauts deployed automated field experiments at designated stations on the moon. (Dec. 12, 1972, MSFC-73-mSG-220-102)


First Ride in the Apollo 17 Lunar Rover

First Ride in the Apollo 17 Lunar Rover

Apollo 17 Commander Eugene Cernan took the Lunar Roving Vehicle on a checkout drive during the early part of the first extravehicular activity at the Taurus-Littrow landing site. This view of the “stripped down” rover was taken before the astronauts loaded it with equipment for lunar exploration including the ground controlled television assembly; the lunar communications relay unit, the hi-gain antenna, the low-gain antenna, aft tool pallet, and lunar tools and scientific gear. The mountain in the right background is the east end of South Massif. The Boeing Company working with of NASA Marshall Space Flight Center designed the rover to be lightweight yet strong enough to carry as much equipment as possible. (Dec. 12, 1972, JSC-AS27-147-22526, GRIN GPN-2000-001139)


Lunar Roving Vehicle Fender Repair

Lunar Roving Vehicle Fender Repair

This close-up view of the Lunar Roving Vehicle at the Taurus-Littrow landing site was photographed during the second Apollo 17 lunar surface extravehicular activity (EVA). During the first EVA, a hammer got stuck underneath the fender and a part of the fender was knocked off. Astronauts Eugene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt reported a problem with lunar dust because of the damaged fender. Following a suggestion from Astronaut John Young in the Mission Control Center at Houston, the crewmen repaired the far-right fender early in the second EVA using lunar maps and clamps from the optical alignment telescope lamp. Schmitt is seated in the rover. The lunar roving vehicle was developed by The Boeing Company under the direction of NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center. (Dec. 12, 1972, 0-35873)


Exploring the Moon

Exploring the Moon

Geologist-Astronaut Harrison Schmitt retrieved lunar samples with an adjustable sampling scoop during the second extravehicular activity at Station 5 at the Taurus-Littrow landing site. Schmitt and fellow lunar explorer, Commander Eugene Cernan set up nine geology stations on the moon. During three lunar excursions, they drove the rover between sites to collect samples and monitor data on instruments. The lunar roving vehicle was developed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. (Dec. 12, 1972, GPN-2000-001124 and AS17-145-22157)


Lunar Geology Discovery

Lunar Geology Discovery

This view of geology Station 4 at Shorty Crater where the crew found the highly-publicized orange soil. The Shorty Crater was actually an impact crater and the orange soil was an older volcanic deposit. The tripod-like object was the gnomon and photometric chart assembly used as a photographic reference to establish local vertical Sun angle, scale and lunar color. The gnomon was one of the Apollo lunar geology hand tools. The lunar rover developed at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., was designed to carry two astronauts and scientific equipment needed for exploring the moon. (Dec. 12, 1972, GPN-2000-001152 and AS17-137-20990)


Lunarscape

Lunarscape

An extraordinary lunar panorama at geology Station 4, Shorty Crater, was photographed as Geologist-Astronaut Harrison Schmitt explored the moon using the Lunar Roving Vehicle developed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. This was the area where Schmitt discovered unusual orange soil. Shorty Crater is located to the right. The peak in the center background is Family Mountain. A portion of South Massif is on the horizon at the left edge. (Dec. 12, 1972, GPN-2000-001149, AS17-137-21011)


Big Lunar Boulder

Big Lunar Boulder

Geologist-Astronaut Harrison Schmitt worked next to a huge, split boulder at geology Station 6 on the sloping base of North Massif during the third Apollo 17 extravehicular activity. The lunar rover developed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. operated fine in this rough lunar terrain. (Dec. 13, 2012, : GPN-2000-001148, AS17-146-22294)


Splashdown

Splashdown

The Apollo 17 capsule and crew splashed down at 2:25 p.m. EST on Dec. 19, 1972, landing 648 kilometers (350 nautical miles) southeast of American Samoa. The mission marked the longest Apollo mission, 504 hours, and the longest lunar surface stay time, 75 hours, which allowed the astronauts to conduct extensive geological investigations. They collected 257 pounds (117 kilograms) of lunar samples with the help of the Lunar Roving Vehicle designed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. (Dec. 19, 2012, GPN-2002-000059 and 72-H-1550)


Apollo 17 emblem

Apollo 17 emblem

Artist Robert T. McCall designed the Apollo 17 mission emblem in collaboration with the Apollo 17 crew members Eugene Cernan, Ronald Evans and Harrison Schmitt. The image of Apollo, the Greek God of the Sun, was chosen as the dominant design element of the emblem. The particular image selected was the famous Apollo Belvedere sculpture now in the Vatican Gallery in Rome. Suspended in space behind the head of Apollo is an American eagle of contemporary design, the red bars of the eagle’s wings represent the bars of the American flag; the three white stars symbolize the three Apollo 17 astronauts. The background is the deep blue space and within it are the moon, the planet Saturn and a spiral galaxy. The moon is partially overlaid by the eagle’s wing suggesting that this is a celestial body man has visited. The thrust of the eagle and the gaze of Apollo to the right and toward Saturn and the galaxy are meant to imply that human goals in space will someday include the planets and perhaps even the stars. The colors of the emblem are red, white, and blue—the colors of the American flag, with the addition of gold to symbolize the golden age of space flight. (MIX #: 0600897, NIX #: MSFC-0600897, Photo 72-H-1254 72-HC-721)

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