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Apollo 11 Moon Touchdown had a plan for lunar germs – however the video reveals a giant flaw

When the Apollo 11 crew discovered themselves within the Pacific Ocean on July 24, 1969, simply days after two of them had handed over the moon, NASA had put in place procedures for comprise the germs of the moon.

Astronauts have been instructed to put on insulating clothes. They had been cleaned and transported to a quarantine middle. However there was not less than one downside with this plan, mentioned the 2 astronauts of the mission nonetheless residing as we speak.

They shared their experiences in PBS's "Chasing the Moon", which is able to happen from July eight to 10 at 9 pm EDT – simply days earlier than the 50th anniversary of the moon touchdown on July 20th. The sequence covers the actions that preceded the touchdown on the Apollo 11 moon 50 years in the past. PBS has offered this clip solely to Area.com.

Associated: Apollo 11 to 50 years outdated: full information to the historic Moon Touchdown mission

Talking about scenes of a restoration helicopter recovering the spacecraft (additionally referred to as a management module), crew member, Michael Collins, recalled that "rooms crammed with scientists "didn’t assume that there have been germs, however that NASA wished to take precautions.

In the course of the lunar touchdown, Collins himself remained within the management module whereas his teammates landed within the lunar module. However, Collins was "uncovered" to all attainable germs upon the return of his colleagues within the management module for the return journey.

"Seem like this," he added. "Suppose that there are germs on the moon.There are germs on the moon, we come again, the management module is filled with lunar germs.The management module lands within the Pacific Ocean, And what are they doing? Open the hatch.It’s important to open the trapdoor! All of the rattling germs are popping out! "

Buzz Aldrin, one of many two astronauts who landed on the moon, echoed this sentiment, alongside Neil Armstrong (deceased – from pure terrestrial causes and never from lunar germs – in 2012 on the age of 82).

President Richard Nixon greeted the Apollo 11 astronauts of their quarantine facility shortly after their splashing of the moon.

(Picture credit score: NASA / JSC)

"It’s important to snigger a bit," mentioned Aldrin, whereas archival footage confirmed disinfection of astronauts in a floating raft beside the probe. He remembered that rescuers had sponged him after which threw the used fabric within the water by their facet. "He carries all these germs to the underside of the ocean," he says, earlier than laughing. "I ponder if they’d survive there?"

The astronauts spent 21 days in quarantine and a few of these moments are recorded within the documentary, together with a celebration with a cake. Astronauts and their assist workers celebrated one facet of the glass; their households celebrated one another.

The astronauts have left quarantine with none downside. Apollo 12 and 14 crews adopted the identical process on their return. NASA then deserted the isolation requirement and the final three crews of Moon – Apollos 15, 16 and 17 in 1971 and 1972 – didn’t care about quarantine.

Comply with Elizabeth Howell on Twitter @howellspace. Comply with us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Fb.

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