Thousands of (more than 9,600) photos taken by the astronauts during the Apollo Program (1966-1972) now on the popular image and video hosting website Flickr. Network and administrative data systems specialist and Project Apollo Archive‘s creator Kipp Teague recently updated new and unprocessed versions of original NASA photo scans to the image sharing site.

You can see all the archives on the Project Apollo Archive page on Flickr. The photos are taken by the Sweden-made “Hasselblad” cameras from the Earth, from the Lunar orbit and on the surface of the Moon by astronauts with their chest-mounted cameras.

Apollo Program

Apollo Program: AS17-152-23274 Apollo 17 Hasselblad image
AS17-152-23274 Apollo 17 Hasselblad image from film magazine 152/PP – Lunar orbit, Transearth coast, SIM Bay EVA / film retrieval. The crescent Earth rises above the lunar horizon in this spectacular photograph taken from the Apollo 17 spacecraft in lunar orbit during National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) final lunar landing mission in the Apollo program. While astronauts Eugene A. Cernan, commander, and Harrison H. Schmitt, lunar module pilot, descended in the Lunar Module (LM) “Challenger” to explore the Taurus-Littrow region of the moon, astronaut Ronald E. Evans, command module pilot, remained with the Command and Service Modules (CSM) “America” in lunar orbit.

The Apollo program (1966-1972), also known as Project Apollo, was the third United States human spaceflight program (the first two were the Project Mercury, between 1958 and 1963 and the Project Gemini, between 1961 and 1966) carried out by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), which accomplished landing the first humans on the Moon from 1969 to 1972. The first manned flight of Apollo was in 1968.

List of Apollo Program missions

  • AS-201 (February 27, 1966): First flight of Saturn IB and Block I CSM (Command and Service Module); suborbital (see Notes 1) to the Atlantic Ocean; qualified heat shield to orbital reentry speed.
  • AS-203 (July 5, 1966): No spacecraft; observations of liquid hydrogen fuel behavior in orbit, to support the design of S-IVB restart capability.
  • AS-202 (August 25, 1966): Suborbital flight of CSM to the Pacific Ocean.
  • Apollo 1 (February 21, 1967): Not flown. All crew members (Gus Grissom, Ed White, and Roger B. Chaffee) died in a fire during a launch pad test on January 27, 1967.
  • Apollo 4 (November 9, 1967): First test flight of Saturn V, placed a CSM in a high Earth orbit; demonstrated S-IVB restart; qualified CM heat shield to lunar reentry speed.
  • Apollo 5 (January 2-23, 1968): Earth-orbital flight test of LM (Lunar Module), launched on Saturn IB; demonstrated ascent and descent propulsion; human-rated the LM.
  • Apollo 6 (April 4, 1968): Uncrewed, second flight of Saturn V, attempted demonstration of trans-lunar injection, and direct-return abort using SM engine; three engine failures, including failure of S-IVB restart. Flight controllers used the SM (Service Module) engine to repeat Apollo 4’s flight profile. Human-rated the Saturn V.
  • Apollo 7 (October 11-22, 1968): First crewed Earth orbital demonstration of Block II CSM, launched on Saturn IB. First live television publicly broadcast from a crewed mission. Crew: Wally Schirra, Walt Cunningham, Donn Eisele.
  • Apollo 8 (December 21-27, 1968): First crewed flight of Saturn V; First crewed flight in Apollo Program, the first spaceflight to the Moon, the first humans to leave the Low Earth Orbit (LEO). CSM made 10 lunar orbits in 20 hours. The first earthrise has ever seen directly by humans. Crew: Frank Borman, James Lovell, William Anders.
  • Apollo 9 (March 3-13, 1969): Second crewed flight of Saturn V; First crewed flight of CSM and LM in Earth orbit; demonstrated portable life support system to be used on the lunar surface. Crew: James McDivitt, David Scott, Russell Schweickart.
  • Apollo 10 (May 18-26, 1969): Dress rehearsal for first lunar landing; flew LM down to 50,000 feet (15 km) from the lunar surface. Crew: Thomas Stafford, John Young, Eugene Cernan.
  • Apollo 11 (July 16-24, 1969): The first crewed lunar landing, in Tranquility Base, Sea of Tranquility. Surface EVA time: 2:31 hr. Samples returned: 47.51 pounds (21.55 kg). Crew: Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins, Buzz Aldrin.
  • Apollo 12 (November 14-24, 1969): The second Moon landing, in Ocean of Storms near Surveyor 3. Surface EVA time: 7:45 hr. Samples returned: 75.62 pounds (34.30 kg). Crew: C. “Pete” Conrad, Richard Gordon, Alan Bean.
  • Apollo 13 (April 11-17, 1970): Third landing attempt aborted in transit to the Moon, due to SM failure. The crew used LM as a “lifeboat” to return to Earth. Mission labeled as a “successful failure”. Crew: James Lovell, Jack Swigert, Fred Haise.
  • Apollo 14 (January 31-February 9, 1971): The third Moon landing, in Fra Mauro formation, located northeast of the Ocean of Storms. Surface EVA time: 9:21 hr. Samples returned: 94.35 pounds (42.80 kg). Crew: Alan Shepard, Stuart Roosa, Edgar Mitchell.
  • Apollo 15 (July 26-August 7, 1971): First Extended LM and rover, landed in Hadley-Apennine, located near the Sea of Showers/Rains. Surface EVA time:18:33 hr. Samples returned: 169.10 pounds (76.70 kg). Crew: David Scott, Alfred Worden, James Irwin.
  • Apollo 16 (April 16-27, 1972): Landed in Plain of Descartes. Surface EVA time: 20:14 hr. Samples returned: 207.89 pounds (94.30 kg). Crew: John Young, T. Kenneth Mattingly, Charles Duke.
  • Apollo 17 (December 7-19, 1972): The last mission of the Apollo Program. The first and only Saturn V night launch. Landed in Taurus-Littrow. The first geologist on the Moon. Apollo Program’s last crewed Moon landing. Surface EVA time: 22:02 hr. Samples returned: 243.40 pounds (110.40 kg). Crew: Eugene Cernan, Ronald Evans, Harrison Schmitt.
Apollo Program: Earth from Apollo 4
Crescent-Earth: Coastal Brazil, Atlantic Ocean, West Africa, Sahara, Antarctica, (looking west), as photographed by an automatic camera aboard the unpiloted Apollo 4 command module on November 9, 1967, at an altitude of 11,200 miles (18,000 km). Apollo 4, (also known as AS-501), was the first unmanned test flight of NASA’s mighty Saturn V rocket, which was used by the U.S. Apollo Program to send the first astronauts to the Moon. You can see the full-size image on NASA.gov.
Apollo Program Moon Landing - Buzz Aldrin on the Moon
Apollo Program’s first Moon Landing: Astronaut Buzz Aldrin, lunar module pilot, stands on the surface of the moon near the leg of the lunar module, Eagle, during the Apollo 11 moonwalk. Astronaut Neil Armstrong, mission commander, took this photograph with a 70mm lunar surface camera. While Armstrong and Aldrin descended in the lunar module to explore the Sea of Tranquility, astronaut Michael Collins, command module pilot, remained in lunar orbit with the Command and Service Module, Columbia. This is the actual photograph as exposed on the moon by Armstrong. He held the camera slightly rotated so that the camera frame did not include the top of Aldrin’s portable life support system (“backpack”). A communications antenna mounted on top of the backpack is also cut off in this picture. When the image was released to the public, it was rotated clockwise to restore the astronaut to vertical for a more harmonious composition, and a black area was added above his head to recreate the missing black lunar “sky”. The edited version is the one most commonly reproduced and known to the public, but the original version, above, is the authentic exposure. This image was cataloged by NASA Headquarters of the United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) under Photo ID: AS11-40-5903. Image: Wikipedia

Hasselblad cameras

Victor Hasselblad AB is a Swedish manufacturer of medium-format cameras and photographic equipment based in Gothenburg, Sweden. The company is best known for the medium-format cameras it has produced since World War II.

Perhaps the most famous use of the Hasselblad camera was during the Apollo Program missions when humans first landed on the Moon. Almost all of the still photographs taken during these missions used modified Hasselblad cameras.

Hasselblad’s traditional V-System cameras remain widely used by professional and serious amateur photographers. One reason is a reputation for long service life and quality of available lenses. Their newer H-System cameras are market leaders, competing with Sinar, Mamiya, and others in the medium-format digital camera market.

Apollo Program: Kipp Teague in 1999
Kipp Teague in 1999

Kipp Teague is a native of Lynchburg, Virginia, where he is currently employed by Lynchburg College as a network and administrative data systems specialist. An alumnus of the University of Virginia, Mr. Teague also has a wide variety of personal interests, which are well-represented on his RetroWeb site, which he hopes you will visit. The site features Teague’s Apollo Program retrospective Contact Light, which includes a superb collection of high-resolution Apollo images and film clips.

Notes

When a spacecraft reaches outer space, but its trajectory intersects the atmosphere or surface of the gravitating body from which it was launched so that it will not complete one orbital revolution, this is called a suborbital spaceflight.

Sources

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