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What did we learn with Apollo that we couldn't have learned with robotic probes?

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posted on Aug, 21 2009 @ 04:46 AM
I wonder about this, 'cause I know that prior to Apollo, there were advocates of just sending unmanned probes to the moon. I'm sure we did learn a lot that probes and robots couldn't have told us, but my question is what, specifically?

Surely if we'd sent a robot in 1969, the fact that we were using 1969 technology would have yielded a different level of usefulness compared to what we've currently got crawling around on Mars, because a lunar robot with yesterday's computer technology would have been much less capable of autonomous operation. However, the moon's a lot closer to home, which would have made direct radio control much easier.

And as long as we're on the subject, what do we stand to learn by sending humans to Mars that we couldn't learn by sending robots? Don't get me wrong, I'd love to see it happen, but a trip to Mars has such a lower likelihood of a safe return that it seems prudent to consider whether a flesh-and-blood human wandering the surface really stands to gather all that much more data than a machine could.

posted on Aug, 21 2009 @ 05:06 AM
a rover on the moon in 1969 would have looked like this

posted on Aug, 21 2009 @ 05:13 AM
reply to post by flightsuit

That humanities will to explore and push boundaries, even at risk is unabaited even if we know the landmass and much of the oceans of this planet like the back of our hands.

I'm sure there are scientific answers as well but i'm not really worried about 40 year old scientific objectives.

Humanity is greater than the sum of its parts, that this spirit has always existed is commendable and seperates us from every other species we know of.

As for the risks, these are for those selected to reconcile for themselves. Many people would gladly and willingly take the risk of never coming back to participate in these missions. That's not to say they are suicidal or have a death wish but are able to process the cost/benefits and are happy to go.

posted on Aug, 21 2009 @ 05:25 AM
In short, the technology clearly isn't what it is today, sure they could land a rover on the moon like the Russians did but it was very limited in what it could do.

Sending manned missions allowed things like rocks and soil samples to be returned and tested,

posted on Aug, 21 2009 @ 05:45 AM
Disclaimer: I'm a theist but not of the Abrahamic faiths. I have minor biblical scholar and scriptural skills. Also I am not a scientific/legal or medical expert in any field. Beware of my Contagious Memes! & watch out that you don't get cut on my Occams razor.All of this is my personal conjecture and should not be considered the absolute or most definitive state of things as they really are. Use this information at your own risk! I accept no liability if your ideology comes crashing down around you with accompanying consequences!

Explanation: What we learned was that we humans could actually travel to another planet/moon/rock with the use of technology etc and survive there for at least several hours in extremely hostile environment and return safely after performing any required duties such as science experiments or anthropo PR ego stroking etc. We wouldn't of learned that by using robots/rovers etc.

Personal Disclosure: The same goes for any environment anywhere! Sending a human proxy is always going to give approximate results to some questions posed [i.e. can we go there and survive?] and only sending an actual human will resolve these questions one way or another!

posted on Aug, 21 2009 @ 05:56 AM
Debunky, thanks for the Wikipedia link. That Luna 17 lander looked pretty bad-ass with its ramps deployed. Like a giant scorpion!

[edit on 21-8-2009 by flightsuit]

posted on Aug, 21 2009 @ 06:18 AM

Originally posted by flightsuit
I'm sure we did learn a lot that probes and robots couldn't have told us, but my question is what, specifically?

A very good place to learn about the Apollo missions and all the different experiments made on the moon, the samples taken and brought back to Earth, and not least all the photos and film taken on the Moon, is the "Apollo Lunar Surface Journal".

Every mission is covered in detail, you can find sample cataloges, scientific reports, mission summaries, image libraries and a lot more. This site is excellent, just go ahead and browse!

posted on Aug, 25 2009 @ 03:02 AM
Oh, look: some more roving around on the moon: Soon on a natural satellite near your local mudball!

posted on Aug, 25 2009 @ 03:20 AM
We learned....

...How to land a man on the moon. And potentially how to land men on other future planets, making the first manned mission to any other planet safer.

It's more of a step than a destination, you know. But I support robotic missions too.

posted on Aug, 25 2009 @ 07:58 PM
The best reason to send humans to Mars or the Moon or any other place is adaptability. You design a robot and it has a specific function, it can only do what it was designed to do. Humans are much more versatile then robots which means you can have more flexible objectives when planning missions. In the end robots are great if you have a specific thing you want to look at but for general exploration nothing beats a Human.

posted on Aug, 27 2009 @ 10:54 AM
Perhaps this is what happened.
As the anti Lunar Landing people might suggest.
Interesting topic and twist of reality.

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