apollo13screenshotnasa

NASA’s 4K visualization shows what the Apollo 13 crew saw on their way around the far side of the moon.


Video screenshot by Amanda Kooser/CNET

The Apollo 13 crew was meant to land on the moon in 1970, but a technical snafu caused them to abort. Instead, the astronauts flew around the far side of the moon and returned home. 

NASA has now re-created that unplanned detour in 4K using images from its Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft.

“This video showcases visualizations in 4K resolution of many of those lunar surface views, starting with earthset and sunrise, and concluding with the time Apollo 13 reestablished radio contact with Mission Control,” said NASA’s Goddard Media Studios in a release on Monday.

NASA’s visualization is sped up, so we zoom through the absolute darkness the astronauts experienced before the far side of the moon came into view. 

The video is majestic, but it doesn’t hint at the extreme hardships the crew went through. They weathered dehydration, ate very little food, and fought frigid temperatures as mission control scrambled to bring them home safely.

Despite the danger, the Apollo 13 crew also experienced great beauty during an adventure that ultimately reunited them with Earth.


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