Flat-earthers, anti-vaxxers and global-warming deniers all have one thing in common: they’re all conspiracy theorists, which means they're skeptical of what is generally held as common knowledge in our society today. Today we’re going to be looking at the theory that the moon landing was a hoax.
There are various reasons as to why so many people believe in conspiracy theories. Conspiracy theorists tend to be skeptical of coincidences, believing that there has to be a reason behind events that are seemingly random. Some even take comfort in believing that these events have to have been caused by someone, making them seem slightly more in control.
It’s pretty widely accepted to this day that mankind has indeed walked on the moon, but still, some remain unconvinced. A national poll conducted in 2013 revealed that seven percent of Americans believe that the moon landing was faked.
Let’s take a look at why it actually wasn’t!
4. Myth #1: Waving Flag In Space
Some believe that this famous video of the waving American flag on the moon is proof that the whole thing was made up. After all, there’s no breeze or wind in space!
According to Roger Launius, a historian at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, “The video you see where the flag’s moving is because the astronaut just placed it there, and the inertia from when they let go kept it moving.”
Another theory is that the astronauts' (Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong) footprints on the moon are just a little too perfect-looking to be real. Almost as if they were planted there ahead of time in concrete!
This one can be chalked up to the dust on the moon, also known as lunar regolith, which packs together very well due to its granules being spiky and abrasive. And like we just covered, there’s no wind on the moon, so those footprints will stay intact for a very long time!
The cameras were actually fixed onto the astronauts’ chests, so they wouldn’t have looked like regular old cameras. Besides, they probably wouldn’t have wanted to deal with a whole extra device on their mission, so attaching it to their suits was probably a smart idea!
The moon’s gravitational acceleration is much weaker than earth’s. It’s six times weaker, to be precise, which means that the spacecraft had roughly 6,000 pounds of thrust, instead of the 36,000 pounds it would’ve had on earth.
In short: the less thrust, the smaller the crater.
The astronauts’ camera settings played a big part in the absence of stars on film. They had to set the cameras in a way that would properly show what they were doing, and this meant that the exposure wasn’t enough to really showcase the stars in the night sky. Increasing the exposure, on the other hand, would make it so that the stars would be somewhat visible while everything else would be too dark to see!
Some have noticed that the astronauts’ shadows in some of the photos look a little...off. For example, in this particular photo, Buzz Aldrin is clearly standing in the lander’s shadow, while he himself is very well-lit. It’s almost as if there is special studio lighting….
In fact, there were multiple light sources, says Roger Launius. “You’ve got the sun, the earth’s reflected light, light reflecting off the lunar module, the spacesuits, and also the lunar surface.” Launius also points out that the moon’s surface is not flat, which can significantly alter the light sources and shadows.
Regardless of the evidence, there will always be some people who just don’t believe in the facts! Just can’t please everyone, can you?