Lunar Lander Descent Crater

One of the main areas of study in the Moon Hoax has been the lack of a landing crater under the LM. First we need to look at the facts.

  1. [NASA]Regolith covers virtually the entire lunar surface[NASA]
  2. The Descent rocket produced 10,000lbs of thrust at its full capacity.
  3. At the stage of the actual landing, the thrust was throttled back to 2-3,000lbs. This was the very first rocket engine with the ability to be throttle controlled.
  4. The Moon's surface is not a solid rocky crust. The surface is covered with regolith (a fine powder made from billions of years of impacts).  [lpi.usra.edu] [The depth of regolith]...within Mare Tranquillitatis [has] a median value of 4.4 m [lpi.usra.edu].
  5. [Khalid]The density of regolith at the Apollo 15 landing site averages approximately 1.35 g/cm3 for the top 30 cm, and it is approximately 1.85g/cm3 at a depth of 60 cm. Their average highlands regolith thickness (12 m) is somewhat larger that what we found (6-8 m)[Khalid].
  6. [Wilson]Volcanic ash has a median density of 0.7g/cm3 [Wilson].
  7. The Moon's surface blends with the vacuum of outer space. There is no air.
  8. There is no water on the Moon.
  9. There are no other liquid types on the surface of the Moon.

Imprints in the Lunar Regolith

Image: NASA

The above image shows a footprint from one of the astronauts boots. However, is the print actually on the Lunar surface? Why would a material described by Neil Armstrong as a fine powdery substance, glogg together in a vacuum. NASA explains that the prints are due to the electrostatic qualities of the silica in the Moon's regolith.

[Lane & Gilbert]The presence of unbalanced electric charge on the surface of silicate particles [in a volcanic eruption] < c. 100 µm in size promotes aggregate formation[Lane & Gilbert]. This suggest that on the Moon in a vacuum that there may be some static aggregation at the time of volcanic activity. Scientists believe [rightly or wrongly] that there was no volcanic activity in the formation of the Moon or any time in is history. However, science per se has not yet been introduced to Crustonics. Crustonics is  a process that builds non impact craters, and it does so by low level volcanism (more on this will be available at gregoryround.com). 

 The fact that there are images taken from Lunar orbit that seem to show tracks of astronaut boot prints is not in itself proof of anything except they may have been doctored.  A boot print is under 40cms in length. The LM descent module is 5 Metres in width, yet we can't see details of them from the LROC images. Yet we must believe that the LROC can see a boot print?

Image: NASA

Above we have a LM sitting on some surface, somewhere. I want you to remember two things. 1. That the Moon's surface is covered with a deep regolith and 2. The descent rocket nozzle shows absolutely no sign of being used. There is no burnt marks. No heat marks. The LM looks as good as it did they day it was unpacked at NASA. The amount of dust flying around when the LM landed would be huge. A cloud of significant size. This cloud of dust is made from spark glass spheroids. And yet no damage to the LM was reported.

This Falcon 9 SpaceX rocket shows how burnt a nozzle should be. I have had years working with gas burners for kilns and it doesn't take long for the metal to either burn to a reddish brown or black.

Image: NASA

No blast crater. The crater slightly to the right may have been the planned position for the LM but it was dropped in by crane onto the wrong spot? At 2-3,000lbs thrust hovering over a loosely packed dusty powdery regolith a crater should have been made.

Some people are saying that the engine was shut down before the LM was on the surface. But Armstrong himself said that he shut the rocket down after it landed. The landing surface probes, once they hit the ground set off a light on the instrument panel of the LM. Then the pilot shuts the engine down. Even though the Moon's gravity is only 1/6 that of the Earth, shutting the engine down at any height above the surface would cause the LM to free fall. After all, it still weighed in at nearly 3,000 kilos (that's 3 tonne) in 1/6 Earth's gravity. It would have crashed instead of landing and broken the landing legs (even though they were designed to collapse, they would not have survived a free fall pushed by three tonne of weight).  

Once the rocket had reached to within a meter of the surface, the force of the exhaust would have gouged out a crater and swept the surface under the LM. Now I can hear people saying that in a vacuum rocket exhaust goes sideways not down. Well, if that were the case then the LM would have been in freefall from 50,000 ft or more. Gravity is attracting the exhaust and the rocket engine is pushing it out. It would be a powerful flame.

An experiment is to get a leaf blower and hold it over dry sand to see what sort of crater you can make.

This is a closeup of the previous image. Note how deep the regolith is here. No solid rock, no pick axe needed to dig, just a scraping by an astronaut (on the Moon?) into the loose regolith.

Image: NASA

This images show two very important issue. 1. Checkout how much regolith there is under the LM. Bootprints everywhere. NASA states that the fine particles of regolith fell back to the ground before the Astronauts walked on the surface of the Moon. If that were so why is there absolutely no suggestion of it inside the landing pad. Take a really long look at the closeup below and you will see a ball joint that has just been unpacked from the clean room. There would be a mass of dust and tiny chips of regolith covering the ball joint.

Now this image alone closes the story for me. This ball joint is as clean as it was when it sat in NASA's clean room a Houston. There is simply no way that it wouldn't be filled with regolith dust.

And just to emphasize my point the entire structure with all those wrinkles and places for dust to settle is as clean as the proverbial whistle.

References

http://www.lpi.usra.edu/meetings/lpsc2011/pdf/2607.pdf

Wilson, T.M.; Stewart, C.; Sword-Daniels, V.; Leonard, G.; Johnston, D.M.; Cole, J.W.; Wardman, J.; Wilson, G.; Barnard, S. (2011). "Volcanic ash impacts on critical infrastructure". Physics and Chemistry of the Earth.

Alshibli, Khalid (2013). "Lunar Regolith". University of Tennessee (Knoxville).

James M R, Lane S J, and Gilbert J S 2003 Density, construction, and drag coefficient of
electrostatic volcanic ash aggregates J. Geophys. Res., 108(B9) 2435

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