Leighton Buzzard Photographic Club: space photography

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Last Wednesday (3 April), Peter Truscott from Bedford Astronomical Society transported Leighton Buzzard Photographic Club to the moon!

Members enjoyed a riveting presentation, “Photographing Apollo – The Birth of Space Photography”, about the development of photography on the NASA Apollo space programme. Famously, the Apollo project from 1961 to 1972 succeeded in putting the first men on the moon and returning them safely to Earth.

Peter described how Hasselblad and Maurer cameras, with Zeiss lenses and especially thin Kodak film, were developed and adapted to function in extreme conditions (including temperatures ranging from minus 100C up to plus 120C). He also showed, with many illustrations, how these still cameras, together with video and TV cameras, were used to document and publicise the progress and achievements of the Apollo missions.

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Many photographic “firsts” were achieved, including the first colour photography in space, the first live TV broadcast from a crewed mission, and of course TV and photographic coverage of the first men walking on the surface of the moon.

Astronaut Ronald E Evans Retrieving Film From Cameras - Apollo17 MissionAstronaut Ronald E Evans Retrieving Film From Cameras - Apollo17 Mission
Astronaut Ronald E Evans Retrieving Film From Cameras - Apollo17 Mission

This was a fascinating look at both the Apollo missions and the photographic kit developed to capture thousands of historically significant images.

We are always keen to share our passion for photography and provide a warm welcome for new members. We run a varied programme of activities for photographers of all levels. See our website at lbpc.org.uk and join us soon to unleash your creativity.

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