Photo by Brian McGowan on Unsplash
Did you know that Apollo 14 landed at the planned landing site for Apollo 13? The place is called the Fra Mauro Highlands. The Apollo 14 lander, Antares, landed at Fra Mauro near the Cone crater. Part of the mission required an EVA to the rim of Cone crater to collect samples from inside the crater’s rim. The hope was to collect samples from under the Frau Mauro formation as ejecta from the deep cone crater. Lacking navigation aids such as modern GPS, Shepard and Mitchell missed the rim of the crater as they walked up the hill. After a time, Shepard decided they were close enough and collected the samples.
One interesting additional find from the mission samples is a big rock nicknamed ‘Big Bertha’. It turns out that ‘Big Bertha’ is a piece of granite. It is a meteorite ejected from the Earth in the distant past. Granite, unlike basalt, cannot form without significant amounts of water being present.
Another interesting instrument from the Apollo 14 Lunar Surface Experiments Package is the SIDE (Suprathermal Ion Detector Experiment). It measured the mass and energy of positively charged ions. These result from the solar wind hitting the Moon’s surface.
Read More about Apollo 14 here: Science of Golf and Outgassing
Video of Mission by Homemade Documentaries:
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