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The 10-year-old who helped the Apollo 11 Mission

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posted on Jul, 20 2009 @ 12:50 PM
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Here's a fun news story about a 10-year-old boy who became a vital part of the Apollo 11 mission:

www.cnn.com...

The spacecraft itself would have worked fine without the boy, but the ability to make vital communications would have been lost.




posted on Jul, 20 2009 @ 01:02 PM
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That's pretty kewl! I never heard that story before. Thanks!

When I first started to read the article I was thinking it was because a 10 year old had simple solutions based on common sense rather than the complex solutions that come from Western Scientists (like spending billions on developing a pen that works in Space when the Russians just use a #2 Pencil). The 10 year old's actual role in this story turned out to be an unexpected surprise.



posted on Jul, 20 2009 @ 02:32 PM
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reply to post by fraterormus
 

No.
No one spent billions on developing the pen. Both the Americans and Russians used the "Space Pen" which was developed by Paul C. Fisher.

Fisher offered the pens to NASA in 1965, but, because of the earlier controversy, the agency was hesitant in its approach. In 1967, after rigorous tests, NASA managers agreed to equip the Apollo astronauts with these pens. Media reports indicate that approximately 400 pens were purchased from Fisher at $6 per unit for Project Apollo.

The Soviet Union also purchased 100 of the Fisher pens, and 1,000 ink cartridges, in February 1969, for use on its Soyuz space flights. Previously, its cosmonauts had been using grease pencils to write in orbit.

history.nasa.gov...


[edit on 7/20/2009 by Phage]



posted on Jul, 20 2009 @ 02:53 PM
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reply to post by Phage
 

That is correct, Phage.

And before NASA bought the space pen from Fisher for $6, their astronauts used pencils. However, because NASA felt there was a risk (however slight) of a piece of broken pencil graphite floating into the equipment, they felt that a pen was a better idea.

NASA never asked Fisher to make the pens, and Fisher spent only its own money developing them.



posted on Jul, 20 2009 @ 05:17 PM
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Originally posted by Soylent Green Is People

That is correct, Phage.

And before NASA bought the space pen from Fisher for $6, their astronauts used pencils. However, because NASA felt there was a risk (however slight) of a piece of broken pencil graphite floating into the equipment, they felt that a pen was a better idea.

NASA never asked Fisher to make the pens, and Fisher spent only its own money developing them.



Besides, would you like to risk keeping records with an erasable medium such as a Pencil, or would you prefer a permanent form of such? The Pen has plenty of advantages over the Pencil, especially in such a crucial scenario. As a matter of fact, Buzz Aldrin used a Pen to blast off from the Lunar Surface when a Circuit Breaker switch broke off during their maneuvers around the LM. Can you imagine a Pencil just snapping off in that situation? Pencils may very well have left Aldrin and Armstrong stranded on the Lunar Surface for all eternity.



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