Apollo 16
Three essential pieces of equipment on any moon landing appear in this image. The Lunar Rover, which has been likened to "a spacecraft on wheels," carried a navigation computer, communication systems, tools, maps, and, of course, astronauts. Though it traveled at a top speed of just seven mph, at each bump the wire-wheeled vehicle (shown here with Lunar Module pilot Charles Duke) took flight because of the moon's low gravity, which is but one-sixth that on Earth. To the rover's right is the Lunar Module, giving a good sense of how difficult it is to judge distances on the moon. To the rover's left, out in the middle distance, stands a square, black object: the Apollo Lunar Surface Experiments Package. One of the instruments in the ALSEP was a seismometer, which recorded everything from meteor strikes to the crash landings of spent Lunar Modules and Saturn boosters. The panorama was taken by Commander John Young.

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QuickTime photography courtesy of U.S.Geological Survey Astrogeology Program

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