Mar 26, 2022

Apollo 17 lunar sample opened for the 1st time

Posted by in category: space

Nearly 50 years after it was collected, a lunar sample from the Apollo 17 mission has finally been opened at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. It’s one of the last unopened samples from the final Apollo mission to land humans on the moon.

“We have had an opportunity to open up this incredibly precious sample that’s been saved for 50 years under vacuum and we finally get to see what treasures are held within,” said Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington, in a statement.

It was collected by NASA astronauts Eugene Cernan and Harrison “Jack” Schmitt in December 1972 when they hammered 14-inch (36-centimeter) cylindrical drive tubes into a landslide deposit in the Taurus-Littrow Valley. The two astronauts vacuum-sealed the tube while still on the lunar surface.

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