On Apollo 11, Neil Armstrong became the first human being to take photographs on the surface of another world, both from the LM Eagle after touchdown and during the EVA at Tranquility Base.
He took great care of capturing good photographs and his shots will remain among the most famous in the history of photography and humankind. Neil Armstrong is pictured during simulated lunar activities at the Flight Crew Training Building at the Kennedy Space Center. He is wearing the Hasselblad 500EL Data Camera mounted on the Remote Control Unit (RCU) on his chest.
The 500 EL Hasselblad Data Camera was specially developed for the harsh conditions of the lunar surface and equipped with a transparent glass reseau plate engraved with grid markings as well as specially designed lenses and Kodak films. Crosses on each picture enabled geologists to make photogrammetric measurements of all objects recorded. Thanks to this camera and NASA’s astronaut-photographers, our first forays into space and onto the surface of another world were pictured, with immense beauty, for all mankind.
“I remember that we devised, during the training program, the LEC (Lunar Equipment Conveyor) and the camera mount. There may have been others, but those are the two that I recall. The camera mount was something I suggested. I recall that. It was a bracket that went on the front of the RCU (Remote Control Unit) to hold the Hasselblads. It had always been intended that we just, you know, carry a camera like you normally carry a camera, maybe with a strap.”
—Neil Armstrong (from the ALSJ mission transcript at 109:26:54 GET)
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© All texts by Victor Martin-Malburet