Lunar Orbiter Images In Unprecedented Detail

NASA Restores Historic Lunar Orbiter Image

"NASA released a newly restored 42-year-old image of Earth on Thursday. The Lunar Orbiter 1 spacecraft took the iconic photograph of Earth rising above the lunar surface in 1966. Using refurbished machinery and modern digital technology, NASA produced the image at a much higher resolution than was possible when it was originally taken. The data may help the next generation of explorers as NASA prepares to return to the moon. In the late 1960s, NASA sent five Lunar Orbiter missions to photograph the surface of the moon and gain a better understanding of the lunar environment in advance of the Apollo program. Data were recorded on large magnetic tapes and transferred to photographic film for scientific analysis. When these images were first retrieved from lunar orbit, only a portion of their true resolution was available because of the limited technology available."

More images and background information are online at

NASA swoons over rescued moons; decades-old lunar photos no longer lost in space, AP

"These photos will have some use, said Wingo's partner, Keith Cowing, head of Spaceref Interactive, which runs space-themed Web sites. When NASA launches its next high-tech lunar probe in the spring, the space agency can compare detailed high-resolution images from 1966 to 2009 and see what changes occurred in 43 years, he said. "What this gives you is literally before and after photos," Cowing said. "This is like a time machine."

NASA unveils lunar image recovery project, CNet

"This project is an opportunity to revel in what was done in the past," said Pete Worden, director of Ames Research Center, "and get excited about what we're doing in the future."

Rescued Moon Photos Restored to Unprecedented Detail, Universe Today

"Earlier this week we had a story about old data from the Apollo missions that could potentially be lost if an "antique" computer from the 1960's can't be renovated. But now comes good news about more old data which has actually been restored and enhanced to an exceedingly high quality."

New pictures of the moon discovered (video), KGO

"It's maybe the last place you might expect to resurrect history. There is an abandoned McDonalds near Moffett Field, with plenty of floor space for 1,894 video tapes. "We liken it to archeology. Techno-archeology," said Dennis Wingo, an imaging expert."

Update: Video - Equipment used to restore images.

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This page contains a single entry by Keith Cowing published on November 13, 2008 4:25 PM.

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