The Sciences

Mythbustin' the Moon Hoax: Part 2

Bad AstronomyBy Phil PlaitJul 18, 2008 9:00 PM


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So the Mythbusters are taking on the Moon Hoax, as I previously reported. However, there was some confusion over the air date. Well, I can confidently tell you that it will air on Wednesday, August 27. Yay! That's two days before Dragon*Con, so maybe I'll talk about it there. As I mentioned in my last post, I was an informal advisor to this episode, giving advice on properties of the lunar regolith (the powdery substance that covers the surface of the Moon, composed of lunar rock ground up by relentless micrometeorite impacts, the solar wind, and the serious temperature gradient between lunar day and night) and also on some properties of the pictures taken by the Apollo astronauts. You know, the astronauts, the ones who really did go to the Moon? Yeah, them. Still, I can't reveal any knowledge of how the tests went... mainly because I don't know. I twisted Adam's arm at TAM 6, but he wouldn't give me any info except elliptically. I can guess how most of them went, because I have a pretty good grasp of what they were trying to do... but testing something still can yield surprises. I honestly can't say what they found, so I'll have to wait until August 27 just like everyone else. Dagnappit.

However, Adam and Jamie are doing a Mythbusters panel at Comic Con next week, and I will be there, boy howdy will I. I'm hoping to corner Adam again, and see what I can squeeze out of him. But it's hard to pressure someone who works with explosions and bullets and giant electrical currents and smelly feet and sharks and home-built cannons and poisonous substances. I'll think of something. Until then, here's the Moon Hoax part of the official press release from The Discovery Channel:

Adam, right after I twisted his arm (actually, he was dropping by my interview with the Skeptic's Guide to the Universe kids, and we wound up chatting up the Moon Hoax). Image courtesy Skepchick's Flickr stream.

Wednesday, August 27 at 9PM – The MYTHBUSTERS take on one of their biggest, most controversial myths ever: Could the July 1969 moon landing have been an elaborate hoax? First, Adam and Jamie focus on photos, testing the theory that two of NASA’s most famous images were shot in a studio. Then, they investigate the myth that to get the classic "low lunar gravity look" the government shot the footage in a studio and then simply slowed it down. And Grant, Tory and Kari take on the claims that the footage of footprints and flags flapping in zero gravity had to be faked.


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