One Librarian’s Mission: To Locate American Flags On The Moon

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NASA

Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin.

Annie Platoff, a librarian at UC Santa Barbara, is on a mission to find out what happened to the American flags that astronauts planted on the moon during the six lunar landings.

Platoff’s research pinpointed four of them, including the one from Apollo 17, the final lunar mission.  At the very least, the nylon national symbols are “tattered” and have “darkened” over the years.  She speculates that the other two, planted during Apollo 11 and Apollo 12, fell victim to the ignition gases emitted from the lunar module during blast-off.

(LIST: The 40th Anniversary of the Moon Landing)

As Platoff told CBS News‘s Jim Axelrod: “It wasn’t the intention for the flag material itself to last. It was just to be there during the, the event — the landing and departing from the moon. We didn’t have a requirement that the flag, the U.S. flag, had to withstand all the environments for eons…I would guess, over time, 40 years, the combination of sun-rot and micro-meteor impact is probably devastating.”

In the walk-up to the final space shuttle launch this Friday, the value of American flags flown in space has skyrocketed.  Robert Pearlman, editor of the space memorabilia site collectspace.com, told Florida Today that the price of these collectables has soared “from $250 to $500 five years ago to more than $1,000 today.”

PHOTOS: A Photo History of The Space Shuttle Program

2 comments
schwaberlaw
schwaberlaw

I updated to v.29 with great trepidation, having disliked many Mozilla's "improvements" over the last couple of years.  Despite being bound and determined to not like it, I think the new look is a vast improvement (for once).  And apropos of Rayz321's comment, while I've never tried Chrome, I've never needed an extension to do a particular thing that I haven't been able to find in the Firefox "search all add-ons" feature.


BTW, using the Customize feature to get rid of the search field is nothing new.  I used the exact same feature to rid myself of that nuisance maybe 15 or 20 version updates ago.


sas

Rayz321
Rayz321

I just don't think I can live without all my chrome extensions.... Google Voice, Google Voice Scheduler, Gmail notifications, CL notifications, spreeder, reddit mail notifier.