Apollo 11 Partially Restored Archives (2009)


Aldrin descends the Lunar Module ladder
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Documentary Description

To commemorate the 40th anniversary of Apollo 11, NASA released partially restored video of a series of 15 memorable moments from the July 20 moonwalk. The source material for the restoration project is the best of the available broadcast-format video. Lowry Digital, Burbank, Calif., is significantly enhancing the video using the company’s proprietary software technology and other restoration techniques. The video is part of a larger restoration project that will be completed in September and provide a newly restored high definition video of the entire Apollo 11 moonwalk. The completed restoration will provide the public with the highest quality video of this historic event.

Fifteen key moments are available, including Neil Armstrong’s first step on the Moon and Buzz Aldrin and Armstrong planting the American flag. The videos are part of a larger project to restore more video of the moonwalk.

A team of Apollo-era engineers who were responsible for the live broadcast of the moonwalk in 1969 gathered the best available video of the event from around the world and worked with experts who specialize in restoring old Hollywood classics.

In 1969, the live broadcast was recorded, along with biomedical, voice and other data, onto one-inch telemetry tapes as a backup if the live feed failed. But those tapes were lost, and a three-year hunt for them was unsuccessful.

So engineers were left with recordings of the TV broadcast, which lost a lot of resolution as they traveled from the Moon to ground-based tracking stations, to satellites via microwave links and through analog landlines to Mission Control in Houston.

“The restoration is ongoing and may produce even better video,” engineer Richard Nafzger at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, who oversaw television processing at the ground tracking sites during Apollo 11, said in a press release. “The restoration project is scheduled to be completed in September and will provide the public, future historians, and the National Archives with the highest quality video of this historic event.”

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Category: Science & Technology
Tags: NASA Goddard Apollo Moon 11 Neil Armstrong Buzz Aldrin Michael Collins 40th Anniversary lunar module


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