|Ground Elasped Time (hh:mm:ss)
||Type or Circumstance
||Need to get closer to the surface
||Armstrong - "In general, there
were a lot of times that I wanted to get down closer to the surface for
one reason or another. I wanted to get my hand down to the
surface to pick up something. This was one thing that restricted
us more than we'd like. We really didn't have complete clearance
to go put our knees on the surface any time we wanted. We thought
the suit was qualified to do that in an emergency, but it wasn't
planned as a normal operation." Extended discussion of kneeling.
||Using the ladder for support
||While holding onto the ladder
with his right hand, Buzz tries reaching down to his left, probably
bending his knees. "Reaching down is fairly easy. "
||Neil bobs down to one knee to
grab something off the ground, possibly the close-up camera.
During the post-mission Technical Debriefing, Neil mentioned that had
to pick it up off the surface on three separate occasions, bobbing down
once and using tools the other two times. "It's a major effort to
get down to the surface to pick the thing up." Discussion
||Using the MESA for support
||Buzz bends his knees and reaches
forward to get the close-up camera.
||Leaning on a rock?
||On the way back from Middle
Crescent Crater, Pete and Al want to collect some samples that prove to
be too big for the tongs. The dialog suggests that Al leans on a larger
rock and has Pete push the desired samples into reach. No TV.
||Using a strap to get low
||Al takes hold of a strap on the
Surveyor parts bag Pete is wearing and provides support while Pete
reaches down to grab a sample. Although Pete and Al recommended
this technique for use by later crews, it was never repeated. No
||Going to one knee
||Shepard, from the Technical
Debrief - "Balance was good and getting control was good. I did
not fall down at any time during either EVA. I got down on my
knee a couple of times to pick up some things, but I got right back up
again. Never, at any time, did I have any trouble with falling
down and balance."
||Using a LM strut for support
||Al leans on the LM strut while
he places the back-up, B&qmp;W TV in the east footpad.
||Using tongs rather than kneeling
||Ed drops the weigh bags and,
rather than use the MESA for support, gets the tongs from Al. "It'd
probably save getting any dirtier than necessary."
||Flight suit not "broken in"
||Mitchell, from the Technical
Debrief - "Although my suit did exceptionally well, far better than the
training suit ever did, it was still stiffer and took more effort to
just hustle around than the training suit did, which was well broken
in. I encountered a little bit of a problem with bending over,
which I had not encountered in one g, and I think this is in proportion
to the forces between the one-sixth g and the stiffness of the suit
compared with the well-worked-in suit in one g. I found that I
could not bend down to the MET level. I could not just bring my
body forward like I could in the training suit and get down to the
MET. I had to bend my knees or get down on a knee to reach things
low on the MET, such as the weigh bags down on the side, or the camera
retaining clips on the MET. It was more difficult for me to bend
down for them (than it had been in training)." Al commented, "I
don't know whether it was unique to Ed's suit or not, because I didn't
have that problem."
||Bobbing down to one knee
||Ed goes briefly to one knee,
perhaps putting the first geophone in the ground.
||Using the Rover support
||Dave leans on the front of the
Rover to lock the high-gain mast in place.
||Using the scoop to lift an end
of the dropped tongs into reach
||Dave dropped his tongs earlier
and, rather than try a dynamic grab or go to his knees, he has Jim lift
one end of the tongs with the scoop. With his knees bent, Dave
gets low eough to grab the tongs.
||Deeply bent knee with the other
leg out to the side as a counterweight
||Dave gets his left leg out to
the side and then bends his right knee almost to 90 degrees to get a
sample bag low enough for Jim to pour in some soil from the
scoop. At 122:57:06, Dave moves downhill till he is level with
Jim and doesn't have to bend his knees as much to get the sample
bag in position.
||Dave sticks his left leg behind
him with his right knee flexed. He then bobs down till his left knee is
almost to the ground and grabs the heat flow probe that was on the top
of the HFE.
||Using the UHT as a prop
||Dave reaches down to
dust cover from the heatflow package. With the UHT in his left
a prop, he extends his right leg to the side, bends his right knee
inward, and reaches down easily with his right hand. Les effort
the dynamic grab he did without a prop three minutes earlier or the one
he will do in about 25 minutes more.
||Dave bobs to one knee to grab
the heat flow probe, which is on the ground next to the emplacement
hole. His first attempt fails. Fendell zooms in just in
capture Dave's second, successful attempt. As he comes up, he
sure wish I had a UHT." Most likely, he is thinking that he could have
hooked the UHT handle under the cable to lift it.
||It takes Dave three attempts to
get the probe bag off the ground.
||Easy grab of the second heat
||Dynamic hammer blow
||Dave wants to use the hammer to
break open a 15-cm rock that is lying on a flat-surface. He puts
his right foot forward toward the rock, puts his left foot back, and
flexes his knees, almost touching the ground with his right knee.
Once down, he breaks the rock with a single blow and then lets the
internal suit pressure straighten his knees so he can stand. A
classic, elegant use of the suit.
||Easy grab of the wire loop on
the drill. The loop was about 15 cm off the ground. The
drill stem was nearby at about chest height, but Dave didn't bother
||Probable dynamic grab
||John practiced doing dynamic
grabs in the 1/6th-g airplane. Cahrlie comments,"Hey, you're doing
pretty well with that deep-knee-dend stuff." John replies, Yeah, I
already picked up a rock to see if it was possible." No TV until
they put the camera on the Rover. Discussion.
||Flexing the knees
||To get something from the back
of the MESA, Charlie jumps far enough onto the MESA to balance on
his stomach. To get down, he bends his knees up 90 degrees, kicks
them down, but doesn't come off. A second later, he pushes
himself off with his hands. Discussion of the difficulty of
keeping the knees bend against the internal pressure of the suit.
||Kneeling using the MESA for
||Charlie has no trouble kneeling
to pick up a piece of dropped equipment.
|120:22:55||Failed dynamic grab
||John has dropped the lower
flagstaff section and attempts to make the grab. He doesn't get
low enough and decides to kneel while using the upper flagstaff section
||Charlie successfully grabs the
drill-stem rack, which had tipped over. Although the relatively
large size of the rack made this grab relatively easy, Charlie is
pleased with his success, "I'm getting where I can bend down in that
||Charlie successfully grabs the
wrench off the drill stems on his second attempt. He does another
successful grab at 121:15:13,
up slightly before he starts down so that the knee will bend
more and he can get lower.
||Using the drill for support
||As he completes one of the
heatflow holes, Charlie has to lean forward to maintain his grip on the
drill and keep it from turning ("torquing") as gets close to full
depth. He looks very stable.
||Leaning on drill to reach down
||With his feet well back, Charlie
leans forward on the drill with his left hand to attach the wrench to
the stems. To get up, Charlie keeps his weight on his left hand
and moves his feet far enough toward the drill that he can stand easily.
||Charlie grabs the rammer-jammer
on his second try. In coming back up, he springs completely off
the ground. He lands on both feet and then does a small hop to
his left to get his balance.
||Failed dynamic grab
||Charlie misses the rock he was
trying to grab and has to scramble to his left to avoid falling.
||John grabs a dropped SCB.
He is partly obscured by the back of the Rover.
||Stable bent knee posture to use
||John sticks his left leg out to the side and then bends his right knee enough to use the hammer on a partially-buried rock. He stays down for about 5 seconds while he strikes the rock twice. After John stands up for a moment, Charlie offers to hold him down and, as John gets down again, Charlie puts his hand on John's left shoulder. John pries a piece of the rock loose and then rises, only having stayed down for a second or two. Note that John wasn't having to reach down quite as far as Dave Scott did when he used the hammer in the Station 6 crater at 144:23:00.|
|124:08:01||Collecting the biggest Apollo
||As he had done three times wiile
working on the far side of Plum Crater, Charlie puts the scoop out in
front of him, holding onto it as his sinks to his knees. "Big
Muley" is roughly cylindrical in shape and is about 20 cm tall and 15
cm in diameter. It's terrestrial weight in 11.7 kg (26 lbs) but
only 2 kg (4.4 lbs) on the Moon. It is the bulk more than the
weight that makes collecting it a challenge. Charlie rolls the
rock toward his right leg and tries to get his fingers under it and
roll it up onto his thigh. That fails and he them leans forward
far enough that he can wrap his fingers far enough down that he can
press the rock firmly against his leg. Still using the scoop as a
support, he manages to stand. He then release his grip on the
scoop and moves his left hand down toward the rock. He then does
a little jump and the rock floats up enough that he can get a solid
grip with both hands. Excellent TV.
||Classic example of John in action
||Balancing on toes while in a
deep knee bend
||Gene and Jack take tourist
photos of each other with both the flag and Earth in view. To do
so, they bend their knees, almost kneeling and balancing on their toes.
||Using the drill for support
||Gene puts his right hand on the drill for stability, puts his left leg back, and flexes his right knee until his left is almost touching the ground. He attaches the wrench to the drill stems and rises without difficulty. Gene uses the technique again when he picks up the neutron probe at 121:09:29.|
||On what may be Gene's first
attempt at a dynamic grab, he gets down and holds the position long
enough to remove the wrench from the drill stems. He will need
some practice to become efficient.
||Leaning on the drill without
||To remove the wrench from the
drill stems, Gene puts the drill down, bends his knees enough to get
his right hand on the drill, moves his feet back a short way, bends his
knees slightly and, with most of his weight on his hand, is able to
remove the wrench. He then steps forward and rises without
difficulty. He does something similar when attaching the wrench
and removing it a short time later. "Oh, man, that works great!"
||Gene does a series of quick knee
bends so he can push the heatflow probe into the drill stems. He
doesn't use any support.
||Gene knocks over the drill and,
in part because one of the handles is sticking up, grabs it without
||Kneel, dynamic grab, kneel,
dynamic grab, kneel. Difficulty of working in a small
||In a somewhat frustrating and
certainly tiring sequence, Gene uses the drill for support so he
can go to his knees to thread a drill stem into the one in the
ground. As he gets to his feet, he knocks the drill over and,
after failing with one dynamic grab attempt, gets it with the
second. He rests for a moment and them uses the drill again to
kneel while he tries to remove the wrench. He is unable to free
it and hops to his feet to have a rest. After a few seconds, he
tries to re-position the drill, but it falls over. Once again, it
takes him two tries to get low enough to grab the drill. At the
end of this sequence, he mentions that he has been working in a small
crater and that working on the slopes was difficult.
||Using the suit while removing
the deep core with the jack
||To get maximum throw of the jack
handle, Gene does deep knee bends but, after a short while, he gets on
his knees so he can push the jack handle all the way to the ground.
He has his left hand on the core stems for stability. Later, he
rises up off his knees and then drops back down to put more
force on the handle. "It was a lot of hard work; and not at all
easy." After about 4 minutes of effort, Gene stands to rest,
using the jack handle for support. Comments from Jack, twenty years
later, on Gene ability to bend his knees "almost with his backside on
his heels. There's no way I could have done that; I just couldn't
bend my suit that much." During Jack effort with the jack
starting at about 121:00:02,
he litterally throws his weight onto the handle, he gets very
little knee bend at the bottom of each stroke.
||Efficient use of the jack while
||During Gene's second session
with the jack, he is on his knees with his right hand on the core stems
for stability. As he pushes the handle down with his left hand,
he leans to the left to push the handle all the way down, raising his
right knee a few inches off the ground to get better leverage.
After nine strokes, he uses the core stem for support and he hops up
onto his feet. Gene is righthanded.
||Controlled fall on the jack
||After Jack's spectacular fall,
he has more success with the jack by grasping the core stem with
his right hand - Gene is also holding the stems, probably to minimize
any lateral stress Jack might impart - and does a controlled fall,
pushing the handle down with his extended left arm. Gene has his
left foot on the treadle to keep it steady. After Jack does four
strokes, they change places. Gene goes to his knees and, as he
did earlier, leans to his left as he pushes the jack handle all the way
down. After about six more strokes, working the handle becomes
||Leaning on boulder
||Jack leans on the Station 1
boulder while he breaks off a sample.
||Gene supports Jack for deep knee
||Jack has to unfold the SEP solar
panels, which are at about knee height. To avoid knocking the
transmitter over, he gets Gene support so he can do a stable, deep knee
||Using the MESA for support
||Gene bends his knees, using the
MESA for support, to reach the gravimeter button.
||Maintaining bent knee posture
||Gene uses the hammer on the side
of a knee-high boulder. Discussion of adapting "to whatever the
suit would give you." A short while later, Jack flexes his knee
enough that he can skim the sample off the surface with the scoop.
||Bobbing to one knee on a slope
||While working on the slope
outside the rim of Ballet Crater, Jack faces cross-slope and bobs down
to his upslope knee to retrieve the scoop. "Facing up a slope
like that, it was easy to get down and back up."
||Difficulties on the slope at
||Jack has a sequence of mishaps,
dropping things and trying to retrieve them.
||Deep knee bend for close-up
||Gene bends his knees and gets up
on his toes to take some close-ups. He has a bit of trouble
getting into a stable position. "In one-sixth gravity you can go
down slow enough and you can waver in that almost-kneeling position -
uncomfortable and hard to sustain - long enough to get a couple of
pictures at a 125th of a second."
||Jack uses a boulder for support;
Gene uses the hammer
||Jack retrieves the scoop using
the Station 7 boulder for support. Separately, Gene uses the
hammer as a support in the same way he used the drill earlier; he
scoots his legs backwards as he leans on the hammer without going to
his knees and tries to pick up a football-sized rock. It is too
big. He goes to both knees and finally gets a good grip. He
uses the hammer to push himself far enough back that he can stand.
|Ground Elapsed Time (hhh:mm:ss)||Subject or circumstance||Notes|
||Trying knee bends at the ladder
||Buzz tries some knee
bends. It may be at this point that he gets the smudges of dirt
on his knees can be seen in AS11-40-5903.
||Bobbing Down on one knee
||Neil bobs down
briefly, apparently to grab something off the ground, probably the
Apollo Close-up Stereo Camera. See the extensive discussion of
kneeling following 110:45:03.
||Low value of kneeling without a
||In a 1991 comment, Pete
notes that kneeling was of less value the early missions because their
suits did not have the hip
bellows/convolute that allowed the
J-mission astronauts sit on the Rover. The lack of a hip
convolute may have made cabin
egress more difficult on the early missions.
||Avoid kneeling to keep clean
||Pete and Al Bean went to
some lengths to avoid kneeling, in hopes of keeping the suits relatively
||Ways to kneel
||From the post-EVA-2 debriefing:
Gibson: Roger, Al. Say, did either one of you kneel down
in order to get anything off the surface, or did you use the
newly-developed Bean technique of holding on to the Surveyor parts bag and
lowering the Commander to the surface?
Conrad: Yeah. Well, we used all kinds of things like that. You could take the shovel and stick it in the ground and just do a one-arm pushup and lean down and pick up a rock off the ground with the other hand. It's really a ridiculous way to do it. If you had a suit that would bend, why, you'd have the whole program wired. But, you could do that. It's okay. I fell over once out there, and Al picked me back up again. It's no big deal.
Bean: But, in the same sense, you're always fussing around trying to get down there to get these rocks, and we did kneel down a couple of times. I knelt down and picked some stuff up. And it's particularly easy if you got that Hand Tool Carrier with you. But we really do need to come up with some sort of strap or something that would allow you to lean over and grab a rock that won't fit in those tongs.
||Tech. Debrief extract
||In discussing mobility and
stability, Al mentions "I got down on my knee a couple of times to pick
up some things, but I got right back up again." Emphasize the
value of training in the 1/6th-g airplane.
||Tech. Debrief extract||Ed comments on the greater difficulty reaching low on the Moon. Al says he didn't have any trouble. In the TV, he goes down almost to a kneeling position to attach a weigh bag to the MET.|
||Kneeling with torso vertical
||When the astronauts were at the
ALSEP deployment site, TV images of their suits were badly
bloomed. Nonetheless, we see one of them - possibly Ed - sink to
his knees with his center-of-mass well back and then, after placing the
SIDE subpallet on the ground, rising easily to his feet. Ed may
have used his Universal Handling Tool as a prop to help him keep the
internal pressure of the suit from straightening his knees while he got
down. Similar episode at 116:36:53.
||Bobbing down onto one knee
||Ed pushes a geophone into the
||Using the MET for support
||Ed uses the MET for support so
he can kneel and grab a dropped map.
||Drop to one knee
||During the climb to Cone, Ed
tells Houston, "Al just dropped down on a knee to pick up a rock, and
he went in 3 or 4 inches. Ed has to help Al get up.
||Collect a large rock
||Working near the rim of Cone
Crater, Al collects a 9 kg rock and, although there is no TV coverage,
he almost certainly used the same technique used by Dave
Scott and Charlie
Duke to collect their big rocks: using a long-handled tool for
support while kneeling, pressing the rock against his leg, and then
||In comments on a 1996 draft of
the A15LSJ, Dave wrote, "I cannot imagine that a (dirty) suit would not
compromise cooling by the PLSS, but maybe we were oversensitized to
this issue. Kneeling in the dirt still seems very unattractive
to me! More dirt in the cabin, connectors, etc!! After three days of
dirt on Apollo 15, I would be even more cautious on the next
trip." See, also, comments after 120:58:47.
|125:22:02||Kneeling to put wrench on the
||Dave drilled very deeply and has
to put the wrench on the stems very close to the ground. He uses
the drill as a support in getting up.
||Going sideways onto one knee
||While securing Jim's SCB
harness, Dave goes down on his right knee and holds the position for
sections before finishing the job and rising. While he goes down and
holds his position, he has his left palm on the back of Jim's PLSS for
stability. There are few (no?)
similar instances in the Apollo TV record.
||Using the drill for support,
||Dave uses the drill for support
as he kneels so he can attach the wrench to the drill stem. the
top of the drill is at about knee height. He
has to reach forward with his righthand and ends up with all his weight
on his left hand, with which he is holding the near drill handle, and
on his right knee. His right knee starts to slide under his to
his right and he has to use both hands to push himself up and avoid a
||Using the drill for support
||Dave uses the drill for support
as he gets to his knees and tries to put the wrench on the drill
stem. This time, the drill is at about waist height, so he has
far less trouble than when it was lower. Commentary just prior to
||Going to one knee or, perhaps,
both knees and picking up his dropped camera without support
||After Dave's spectacular trip
and fall at the rille, he asks Jim to use the scoop to raise the camera
lens barrel into reach. Jim in unable to do that because the
barrel slides away on the soft surface. Dave then goes down onto
one knee - or, possibly, both knees - and, once he has the
camera, rises without difficulty. He is partly obscured by Jim,
so we don't know if he was on one knee or both. Because Dave
grabbed the camera with his right hand, we know he didn't use Jim for
||Going to one knee, making use of
a shelf at the base of the rock
||Dave is able to kneel next to a
rock by putting his right knee on a shelf at the base of the rock and
sticking his left leg out to the side, with his foot noticeably lower
than his right knee. He keeps his back relatively vertical.
||Kneeling to collect Great Scott
||Dave gets down on both knees,
without support. He is leaning well back, undoubtedly to put his
center-of-mass behind his knees to keep his knees bent. His feet
are slightly uphill of his knees, which probably helps him keep his
balance. He has the rock on his right and has a bit of trouble
getting his hand low enough to get the rock pressed against the outside
of his leg. The rock is much bigger than his hand. At one
point, he starts to tip to his right, but gets his hand out to steady
himself and his left leg out on the other side as a
counterweight. His second attempt goes well and, as he gets the
rock onto the outside of his right thigh, he stands easily.
|120:22:55||Kneeling with flagstaff section
||After failing in his first
attempt at a dynamic grab, John uses the upper flagstaff section for
support as he goes to his knees to retrieve the lower flagstaff section
he had dropped earlier. At 120;24:20, Charlie comments on how dirty
John's lower legs are already. See, also, AS16-113-18339,
Charlie takes soon after.
||Kneeling to inspect damaged
heatflow cable connection
||After John accidentally catches
the heatflow ribbon cable on his boot and pulls it loose from the
Central Station, he kneels twice as he assesses the damage.
He uses a 30-cm rock for support on the first
occasion; on the second occasion, once his is on his knees, he
takes hold of a protruding piece of attachment hardware for a bit of
stability. He is remarkably stable throughout this sequence.
|121:26:12||Kneeling with the drill for
||For his second attempt to attach
the wrench, Charlie puts his right hand on the drill for support while
he gets to his knees. His posture suggests that the internal suit
pressure is keeping him from getting all of his weight on his knees.
||Kneeling with the chest-high
drill stem for support
||Holding on the the drill stem
with his right hand, Charlie drops easily to his knees
||Repeatedly dropping to the knees
to work the jack
||Charlie gets maximum utility
from the jack by dropping to his knees on each stroke and "letting the
suit do the work" of getting up.
|123:59:15||Using the scoop/shovel for
||Charlie puts the head of the
scoop perhaps 1.5 meters out in front of the his feet and leans on it
with his left hands as he sinksto his knees. Initially, he has his back
nearly vertical and can't reach low enough to pick up the rock fragment
John pried off the partially-buried boulder. He leans forward
till his back is about 30 degrees off vertical, moves himself perhaps
30 cm to his right, and grabs the fragment. He gets to his feet
without difficulty, not having moved the scoop head at all.
Charlie uses the technique again at 124:04:44
and at 124:06:34.
|124:08:01||Using the scoop for
support while collecting Big Muley
||This time, Charlie is much
closer to the Rover and we get a good look at the technique and what he
has to do the pick up this very large rock, the largest single sample
returned from the Moon during Apollo.
||Kneeling while working on LMP
||John kneels while attaching the
bottom straps on Charlie's Sample Collection Bag (SCB). Motions
of Charlie's PLSS suggest that John uses him for some support.
Another example can be found at 122:52:32.
||Kneeling at the MESA
||Because the MESA is lower than
expected, Gene has to get on his knees to remove the drill. With
the MESA for support, he has no trouble staying down or getting up.
||Kneeling with the drill for
||Gene is unable to seat a new
drill stem in the one in the ground and leans on the drill so he can
get on both knees.
||Using the scoop for support
||Gene kneels at the Station 1
boulder to hammer off some fragments, but can't get properly positioned
to effectively wield the hammer. He uses the scoop as a support,
moves his knees back 20-30 cm and leans forward on the scoop with his
left hand while he hammers with his right. He has his back to the
TV. With the scoop as a prop, he gets up easily.
||Kneeling and using a partially
buried boulder for support
||On his way back to the LM, Jack
stops to inspect a boulder that is perhaps 3-4 meters across with only
about 20 cm sticking out of the ground. He lets himself fall
forward until he is leaning on the boulder with his knees on the
surrounding soil. He gets up on his second try at pushing back to
get his center-of-mass behind his knees.
||On hands and knees to retrieve
||Before retrieving the dropped
scoop, Jack kicks it to his right so that, when he drops to his hands
and knees, his feet will be downslope of the scoop, perhaps in a small
crater. This will give him leverage when he pushes back off his
hands to rotate his center-of-mass far enough back that he can stand.
||Getting to one knee on a slope
||The surface near the orange soil
slopes shallowly upward from the direction of the Rover. To get a
scoop of soil out of the trench, Jack gets his right foot downslope and
lowers himself onto his left, upslope knee. Similar situation to Dave
Scott's at 165:39:39.
tries a similar technique soon after at the south end of the
trench, but loses his balance.
||Using Gene's hand for support
||Jack goes to his knees to get a
fragment Gene hammered off the Station 8 boulder. Two minutes
later, we see Jack on hands and knees examining the boulder.
|167:04:26||On hands and knees to roll the
Station 8 boulder
||Gene has his back to the Rover,
so we don't get good views of him getting down or getting up, we do get
a good view of the vigorous push he gives the boulder with his right
hand, while balancing himself on his left.
|Ground Elapsed Time (hhh:mm:ss)||Type||Notes|
Apollo 11: no known falls
||Potential of fallling when
||Armstrong, from the 1969
Technical Debrief - "I would say that balance (while walking)
was not difficult; however, I did some fairly high jumps and found that
there was a tendency to tip over backwards on a high jump. One
time I came close to falling and decided that was enough of
that." Note that Charlie Duke attempted a high jump
during Apollo 16 (see below). He tipped over backwards and landed
on his PLSS, fortunately without any consequences other than a
momentary fright and a bit of wounded pride.
||Crew comments on tendency to
slip while using the Lunar Equipment Conveyor (LEC); and on
various factors that could make footing difficult. Later crews
did not comment on these issues, probably having had the benefit of
knowing what to expect and having more time to adapt to lunar
conditions. Apollo 11 was the only crew to do much walking - as
opposed to hopping or running - which may have also been a factor.
Apollo 12: two probable falls
||Early in the first EVA, Al Bean
comments that, because of the weight of the backpack, they are having
to lean far forward to get their center-of-mass over their feet.
"On Earth, you'd fall over (leaning so far forward)." Adjusting
to this new posture took a few minutes. Additional comments
about not moving backwards. Pete Conrad mentions that, contrary
to comments by the Apollo 11 crew, he did not notice that the ground
||Stumble, no fall
||Pete after telling Al, who is
still in the LM, "you've really got to watch your step down here." A
moment later, while adjusting the height of the MESA, he says "I almost
||Bean discusses the greater
hazard of moving backwards rather than forwards and mentions that "I
tripped a couple of times going backwards." One such instance may
have happened at 117:32:04.
||Bean probably fell; but got up
without difficulty. Conrad may have helped him get up. In
1991, Bean remembered, "I fell down a couple of times."
||Wary of steep slopes
||Conrad and Bean had a "safety
line" which they might have used in case one of them needed help
getting out of a crater. It was no more than about 10 meters long
and was never used. They thought about going into Bench Crater
but decided that the walls were too steep and the danger of
falling was too great. With regard to the latter, they seem to
have been concerned primarily with falling in a position from which it
would be difficult to get up. For example, on their back with
head downslope. Later crews gained experience with steep slopes
and, during Apollo 17, getting up from a difficult position.
||During the post-EVA-2
debriefing, Pete said, "I fell over once out there, and Al picked me
back up again. It's no big deal." The time when this
happened has not been identified.
Apollo 14: One possible stumble or near fall
||Off camera, Al Shepard may have
stumbled while working around the ladder during EVA-1 close-out.
The dialog suggests that he caught himself by grabbing the MESA.
In a section of the Technical Crew Debriefing reproduced after 113:52:26,
says he did not fall during either of the EVAs. Comments about
stability and ease of adaptation.
||Cable snag, no fall
||During the EVA-2 close-out, Al
repeatedly snags the TV cable with his foot and at 135:24:38,
pulls the TV over. He does not appear to stumble during
any of these episodes.
Apollo 15: 3 falls, 1 possible fall, 4 saves, 3 stumbles
||The footpad on the ladder strut
is not resting firmly on the ground and is free to move. When Jim
Irwin steps on the footpad for the first time, it rotates under him and
he saves himself from a fall by grabbing the right handrail.
||Jim moves the TV cable so they
don't trip over it during Rover deployment.
||Fall walking backwards
||During the LRV deployment, Jim
backed away from the LM pulling a lanyard and trying to take pictures
at the same time. He was off camera when he tripped and
fell. Dave Scott gave him a hand getting up. Later, he
learned to get up by himself. "It wasn't difficult ... but it was
much easier, you know, to get your buddy to lift you up."
||Off balance, saved fall
||Dave loses his balance while
installing the LCRU on the front of the Rover. He hops in the
direction of the fall, which gives him time to get his hand onto the
Rover wheel to steady himself.
||discuss care versus efficiency
||Discussion of the relative value
of (1) trying to keep clean, (2) brushing the suits after a fall or
saved fall to avoid excess use of cooling water, or (3) letting the
suits get dirty in the interest of using the limited time available
most efficiently. The Apollo 16 and 17 crews made little effort
to keep clean and only brushed each other off at the end of each
EVA. They threw themselves into their work and fell more frequently.
For longer lunar stays, dust control will be essential.
||Stumble, no fall
||Dave tries to get a sample bag
low enough for Jim to reach and stumbles forward.
||working on slopes
||Working on a hillside at Station
2, Dave has to find a way to stand so he can hold a sample bag low
enough for Jim to reach. Working on slopes required care to avoid
||possbile fall during Rover
||Back at the LM at the end of the
EVA-1 traverse, Jim may have fallen. Dave wants to look at Jim's
camera in case it needs dusting.
||Dave attempts a spinning throw -
like an Olympic discus thrower - of an empty experiment pallet.
His spin continues after he releases the pallet. He is off
balance but gets his right hand on the ground for some stability and
ends up on his feet.
||Rover dismount on steep slope||At Station 6, Dave parked with
the Rover pointed uphill on an 11-degree slope. Dave warns Jim
about the possibility of falling backwards when they jump out of the
seats. Dave may have helped Jim dismount.
||stumble, no fall
||Dave stumbles slightly while
turning to get some sunlight on a rock he is examining.
||Rover dismount on steep slope
||At Station 6a, Dave had to park
on a steep slope with Jim on the downslope side of the Rover.
Dave warns him to be careful jumping off his seat.
||Difficulty of bending back to
look up without falling
||At Spur Crater, Dave is trying
to use a sighting scope to point the high-gain antenna at Earth.
He asks Jim to look up at Earth to help him get a rough alignment but
Jim decides that, because Earth is so high in the local sky, he would
fall if he tried. The sighting scope was re-configured for Apollo 16
and A17, primarily to give a brighter image of Earth. Here, Dave
used LCRU Automatic Gain Control output to get a rough alignment.
The only way to look overhead in the suits was to use the ladder or
some other firm support while leaning backwards or turning sideways.
||Working on a slope
||Jim decides to omit the uphill
frames of a panorama because of the difficulty of leaning backwards.
||Uphill fall on a steep slope
||Dave tries to climb out of a
steep crater and loses his balance because of the soft surface.
He starts to fall to his right but stops that component of the frall
with his right hand. Jim helps him up.
||Stumble, no fall
||Jim stumbles, but does not fall,
while standing on the slope just inside Spur Crater taking pictures.
||Maintaining balance while
collecting large rocks
||While off-camera, Jim collects a
4.8 kg rock. The dialog suggests that he uses the same technique
used by Dave
used at Station 9a and by Charlie
Duke at Apollo 16 Station 1.
||Off balance, saved fall
||Dave loses his balance while
trying to attach a tool to the drill stem. He starts out on his
knees and has his left hond on the near drill handle for support.
He has to reach far forward to attach the tool with his right
hand. As he extends his reach, his left knee comes off the ground
and his right knee starts to slide toward his
left. Because of the weight of the backpack, he starts to
rotate to his right onto his back. To catch himself, Dave grabs
the drill with his right hand and pushed up with his right foot. As he
comes up, he gets his right leg under his center of mass and, with his
left leg stuck out behind, spins through about ninety degrees. As he
brings his left leg down, he makes a few short steps away from the
drill and, finally, brings himself to a stop with a two-footed hop. The
elapsed time from the start of the fall to the end of the final hop was
almost six seconds and this episode is a dramatic illustration of the
length of time one has to respond in one-sixth gravity.
||Suit dirty from falls
||While using the dust brush on
Dave at the end of EVA-2, Jim Irwin wonders why the front of Dave's
suit is so dirty. He then remembers that Dave has saved himself
from some spectacular falls, spraying dust around in the process.
||Spectacular fall after tripping
||While describing details he can
see in the far wall of Hadley Rille, Dave is walking forward and trips
over a rock he hadn't noticed. He fell onto his hands and knees
and, as his momentum carried him out of the TV field-of-view, he was
rolling onto his right side. Jim goes to him to help him get up
but, by the time Jim arrives, Dave is up. Unfortunately, he was still
off camera when he got up. To retrieve the Hasselblad he was
carrying, Dave drops to his right knee, grabs the camera, and gets up
without difficulty. One-sixth grvity and the soft surface made
this fall much less dangerous than it would have been on Earth.
Apollo 16: 12 falls, 4 saves
||Loss of balance, no fall
||Charlie Duke loses his balance
trying to tug loose the Velcro holding his seat back down.
||Dynamic grab, no fall
||Charlie bobs down to get the
wrench off the drill string. He had his right leg well forward
and his left well back and got the wrench off without losing his
balance. They discuss the technique, which John developed during
training in the 1/6th-g aircraft, at 119:24:37.
||Charlie Duke falls while trying
to remove the drill from the deep-core stems. TV of him having
some trouble getting up from his hands and knees. He will learn
to get up more efficiently than he did this time. At 122:51:29,
preparations for the geology traverse, John Young comments on
the amount of dust Charlie has on his suit and/or PLSS.
||Loss of balance, no fall
||Charlie loses his balance while
trying to bob down to grab a rock off the surface. Because lunar
gravity is weak, he has time to recover without falling. First
try at getting up doesn't work but then masters the standard technique
of getting on hands and knees and then pushing with his hands so he
rotates backwards with his knees and lower legs staying on the
ground. Once his center-of-mass is behind his knees, he rises
||Dynamic grab, minor fall||Off-camera, Charlie falls while
solo sampling, probably while trying to bob down to grab the
rock. He has some trouble getting up and, after he is up, checks
to make sure his camera lens is clean.
||Dynamic grab, minor fall
||Off-camera, John tries to bob
down to grab a fallen sample bag and falls.
||Care while collecting very large
||Charlie collects the sample
known as Big Muley from the rim of Plum Crater, using the same
technique used by Scott and Irwin. He is very careful and does
not lose his balance. At 11.7 kg (26 pounds), it is the largest
sample collected during Apollo.
||John dropped the dustbrush and,
as he bobs down to grab it, loses his balance. Gets himself
turned during the fall so he lands on his hands and knees.
||John climbs the ladder using
only one hand on the rails and rungs. He has a rockbox in his
other hand. Charlie urges care.
||Minor fall while getting up||Charlie ended up on his hands and knees when the penetroeter went all the way into the ground on a steep, soft slope at Station 4. He falls while trying to get up.|
||Loss of balance on a soft slope, no fall||Charlie loses his balance while
working on the soft, inner wall of a crater but runs in place until he
can plant the rake and catch himself.
||Fall while mounting the Rover
||When Charlie tries to jump into
his Rover seat, his PLSS hits the seatback and he falls. John
decides they will brush Charlie's lens at the next station.
||Fall getting off the Rover
||At a level site, Charlie has
trouble dismounting and falls when he does get out. After John
helps him up, he checks to make sure his camera lens is clean.
||Minor fall while getting up
||Charlie ended up on his hands
and knees when the penetroeter went all the way into the ground
at a level site. He falls while trying to get up.
||Dynamic grab, minor fall
||John bobs down to grab some
fallen bags. It takes him an extra second or saw to get them in
hand and, during that second, he starts to lose his balance and falls
as he starts to rise. He gets up with a novel technique.
||Loss of balance, minor fall
||Off-camera, Charlie falls while
trying to retrieve an SCB.
||Fall in awkward position
||Off-camera, Charlie falls,
probably while picking up a sample he has broken off Shadow Rock.
He ends up on the ground next to the rock and has to have John's help
to get up.
||After John does a few jumps,
learning to control his balance by doing a series of jumps that start
small and get larger and holding the Rover for stability as he gets
started, Charlie does one small jump and then one very large one.
By the time he gets to the top of the jump, he is leaning backwards by
20-30 degrees and, although he lands momentarily on his feet, he cannot
keep himself from falling backwards onto his PLSS, fortunately with no
Apollo 17: 9 falls, 1 save, 5 stumbles
||stumble, no fall
||Early in EVA, Jack Schmitt
stumbles but does not fall. No TV.
||Gene Cernan falls while trying
to pick up a dropped tool. "Well, I found how to get up!" No TV.
||Jack falls while trying to pick
up a rock. No TV.
||Stable posture for looking up,
||Discussion of a stable posture
Jack uses to look up at equipment on the top of the LM.
||stumble, no fall
||Gene stumbles while trying to
take the wrench off the drill-stem rack.
||spinning throw, almost falls
||Like Dave Scott during the
Apollo 15 ALSEP deployment, Gene does a spinning throw and almost falls.
||Spectacular spinning fall
||While taking a turn using a
jack-and-treadle to remove the deepcore, Jack throws all his weight
onto the jack handle, loses his balance, and ends up in a spectacular,
spinning fall. Gene helps him up. Although Jack is mostly
hidden by Gene, as he gets to his feet we can see Gene's right hand on
Jack helmet near the top of the visors. Gene may have been
pushing back on Jack's head to help him up. While he is down,
Jack doesn't get his knees bent more than about 60 degrees.
||stumble, no fall
||Jack stumbles on a rock near the
LM. No TV.
||stumble, no fall
||Gene stumbles slightly on a
fist-sized rock while climbing out of a crater.
||stumble, no fall
||Jack stumbles while trying to
raise the scoop handle high enough to pour a sample into a bag Gene is
holding as low as he can.
||Need for support when leaning low
||The solar panels on the SEP receiver wouldn't stay open on their own, so Jack had to put some duct tape on them. Because he had to put the tape on at about knee height, he had to lean on Gene to keep his balance. The TV was not pointed at them during this activity.|
||Getting up in 1/6th gravity
||Cernan comments: "This is not
meant as a criticism, but I think that Jack tended to fall more than
the rest of us did. And it's maybe because he became more
aggressive. And, thank God for one-sixth gravity. You would
have dropped things anyway because of the lack of nimbleness and
dexterity and you would have wanted to get down to pick things up and
chip rocks and what have you. And one-sixth gravity made getting
back up a lot easier than it would have been otherwise."
||Off, camera, Gene falls when
trying to mount the Rover at the Scarp Gravimeter stop. He is
able to hold on to the Rover to make getting up easy.
||While working on the outer slope
of the raised rim of Ballet Crater Jack goes to one knee to pick
up a dropped SCB and falls trying to get up. Ballet Crater got
its name because of the efforts Jack had to make repeatedly at this
site to retrieve dropped tools.
||Jack responds to CapCom Bob
Parker's remark about the Houston Ballet calling to request Jack's
services for the coming season by doing one-footed hops on his right
leg with his left leg extended back and up. He is clearly
playing. He loses his balance and falls to his hands and
knees. Discussion about confidence in the suit as long as there
was no chance of falling on a sizeable rock.
||Working in a boulder field
||Need for caution in the boulder
field on the rim of Camelot Crater
||Discuss distribution of dust on
||While dusting each other off at
the end of EVA-2, Gene mentions that, during his fall while trying to
get on the Rover at the Scarp Gravimeter stop, he only got his outboard
(left) arm dirty and not his inboard (right) arm. Also discuss
the amount of time spend dusting each other.
||Working on a steep slope
||Off-camera, Gene has trouble
reaching surfaces on the front of the Rover that need dusting. He
decides to defer the dusting to the next stop. Additional
comments at 165:04:48.
||While sampling on a particularly
steep slope - as evidenced by the fact that both astronauts are using
the high colling setting - Jack falls while trying to pick up a chip he
has broken off one the boulders.
||While running cross slope to
limit his downslope speed, caught his trailing left foot on a small
mound or crater rim and started to fall. He was able to control
the fall and ended up on his hands and knees. Once he gets his
feet downhill, he pushes back to get his center-of-mass over his knees
and rises without difficulty. In 1992, Schmitt commented that, by
this third EVA, they had a great deal of confidence and didn't
worry much about falling. Presumably, they were confident in the
suits and in their ability to get up when they did fall. They
also knew they would fall slowly in 1/6th-g and that, in the absence of
large rocks, the surface was soft.
||Working on a slope
||Because Jack's seat in on the
downhill side of the slope at Station 6, Gene decides to drive the
Rover to a more level spot and let Jack get in his seat there.
||Minor fall; difficulty
getting up from awkward position
||At Station 8, Gene parked facing
mostly uphill but, apparently, with his side slightly uphill and Jack's
slightly downhill. When Gene tries to jump into his seat at the
end of the stop, he falls and is pinned by the slope against the Rover,
possibly with his feet uphill. Gene needs Jack's help in getting
up and has him push back on his helmet.
|Ground Elapsed Time (hhh:mm:ss)||Type or circumstance||Notes|
||Help from LMP
||After Dave's fall on the steep,
inner wall of the Station 6 crater, he gets on his hands and knees with
his weight primarily on his left knee, which is almost on the crater
rim, and his left hand, which he has planted just in front of his left
knee. Dave's right knee is slightly downslope and he holds out
his right hand for Jim's help. Jim gets in position in front of
Dave with his right foot forward and well planted, his right knee
slightly flexed, and his left leg well back. Jim extends his
right hand and holds his arm steady so Dave can use Jim for
leverage. Dave starts to rise, scrambling forward and Jim moves
back to get Dave on the level surface outside the rim.
|121:21:21||Two kneeling events
||Getting up using 10-20 cm of
drill stem as a support
||Charlie falls off-camera while
trying to remove the wrench. Fendell pulls back on the TV zoom
and finds Charlie on his hands and knees. He has his right hand
on the 10-20 cm of drill stem sticking out of the ground. He
pushes himself up slightly with his right hand, maintaining his grip on
the stem, and pulls his knees forward until they are under his
chest. He rises from that position, letting the internal pressure
of the suit do some of the work and pushing himself up and forward with
his feet somewhat like a sprinter coming out of the starting blocks. He
runs forward until he has his feet under his center-of-mass. This
is a side view.
|121:37:04||Rising using the chest-high
drill stem for support
||Charlie uses the drill stem for
support as he drops to his knees, gripping it with his right
hand. In getting up, he maintains his grip and seems to let the
suit do more of the work that in the previous example. Once he is
part way up, he shifts his weight onto his right foot forward and
pushes up and forward with that leg while he moves his left leg
forward. He moves forward a step or two to get his feet under his
center-of-mass. This is a front view.
||Rising by leaning or pushing back
||Charlie got the treadle-and-jack
off the Rover for removal of the deep core. Almost off-camera, he
knelt next to the knee-high stem, probably to remove the wrench, and
may have used the wrench as support in getting down. His back is
vertical. Once he has the wrench off, he leans back until his
center-of-mass is well behind his knees and rises much more easily than
in the prior two examples, with no running forward to regain balance
|121:53:10||Rising by pushing back with the
||After saving himself from a fall
in his attampt to grab a rock off the surface, Charlie goes to his
knees and then rotates forward onto his hands. One he has the
rock, he pushes back a little a tries to run forward under his
center-of-mass. He doesn't make it and falls onto his hands and
knees. He then pushes back hard and once his weight is well
behind his knees, rises without difficulty. This is the standard
|149:11:49||Difficulty rising from hands and
||After the penetrometer
unexpectly - and rapidly - sinks to full depth, Charlie starts to fall
and catches himself with his right hand. He ends up on his hands
and knees. On his first attempt to get up, he has his weight on
his hands and toes and, when he pushs with his hands to get his torso to
rotate up and back, the fact that he didn't have his knees in solid
contact with the ground defeats the effort. On his second
attempt, he gets all his weight on his hands, kicks his feet up and, as
they come down, pushes up with his hands. His chest rises about a
meter or so off the ground and, at that point, he tries to run forward
to catch himself. He doesn't make it and falls forward. On
his third attempt, he lowers his chest to the ground and, although he
has little weight on his knees, push back hard enough that his
center-of-mass rotates back far enough that he can spring
upright. Charlie is not yet proficient in getting up from his
hands and knees.
||Getting up from an erect
||The penetrometer goes to full
depth again, but more slowly. Charlie ends up on his knees but
with his hands still on the penetrometer. He then leans back
until the bottom of his PLSS is touching his heels and holds that
position for a few seconds and wonders if he'll be able to get
up. He decides to try, bounces on his knees slightly and has no
trouble standing. He is learning to use the suit and the weakness
of lunar gravity.
||Using the core stems as a crutch
||After a second session of
jacking the deep core out of the ground, Gene stands to rest, using the
waist-high core stem as a support in getting up. He has been
||Getting up from hands and knees
with Gene's help
||After Jack spectacular fall at the deep core, he ends up on his hands and knees. Although Jack is mostly hidden by Gene, he can see that his knees are bent no more than 60 degrees. As he gets to his feet we can see Gene's right hand on Jack helmet near the top of the visors. Gene may have been pushing back on Jack's head to help him up. This may be what Jack will do to help Gene up from his fall against the side of the Rover at Station 8 at 167:33:28.|
|123:13:03||Getting up from hands and knees
||On his way back to the LM, Jack
got on hands and knees to inspect a partially buried boulder. On
his second try, he is able to push his center-of-mass far enough back
that he can hop to his feet.
|145:27:50||Jack gets up from hands and
knees with his feet somewhat downslope
||Before retrieving the dropped scoop, Jack kicks it to his right so that, when he drops to his hands and knees, his feet will be downslope of the scoop, perhaps in a small crater. This will give him leverage when he pushes back off his hands to rotate his center-of-mass far enough back that he can stand.|
||Getting up from hands and knees
on a slope
||After Gene's spectacular fall at
Station 6, he ends up on his hands and knees. He turns himself
until his feet are downslope, pushes back with his hands and, once his
center-of-mass is far enough back, hops to his feet. Because of
the slope, he doesn't have to push hard with his hands nor rotate his
PLSS quite as far back.
||Three tries to get up from hands
||While Fendell was following Gene
with the TV, Jack got on hands and knees to examine the Station 8
boulder. After Gene returns, we see Jack take threee tries to
push him self back far enough that he can stand. Good TV.
Two minutes later, Gene gets on hands an knees so he can turn the
boulder over. It takes him two tries to get up. Because he
has his back to the Rover, we don't get as good a view of the mechanics
of getting up.