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NASA To Future Lunar Explorers: Don't Mess With Our Moon Stuff

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the why-didn't-you-bring-enough-for-the-entire-class? dept.

Moon 346

coondoggie writes "NASA today gently reminded any future Moon explorers that any relics of its Apollo missions or other U.S. lunar artifacts should be off limits and are considered historic sites. NASA issued the reminder in conjunction with the X Prize Foundation and its Google Lunar X Prize competition which will use NASA's Moon sites guidelines as it sifts through the 26 teams currently developing systems and spacecraft to land on the Moon."

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346 comments

Or what? (5, Funny)

crazyjj (2598719) | more than 2 years ago | (#40102923)

You gonna come up here and get us, NASA?

Yeah, I didn't THINK so.

Re:Or what? (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40102941)

If I'm on the moon and see a rover, it's getting solar panels installed.

Re:Or what? (1, Insightful)

slimjim8094 (941042) | more than 2 years ago | (#40102943)

To be fair, they're the only ones who've ever done it...

Re:Or what? (3, Informative)

Amouth (879122) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103265)

not true, Russia put stuff up there.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luna_2 [wikipedia.org]

Re:Or what? (5, Informative)

dougmc (70836) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103385)

not true, Russia put stuff up there.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luna_2 [wikipedia.org]

Looks like it's not just the USSR and the USA either --

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_artificial_objects_on_the_Moon [wikipedia.org]

Looks like there's stuff up there from the USSR, USA, Japan, China, India and the European Space Agency (18 nations combined.)

Re:Or what? (5, Funny)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#40102947)

We shall send you a very sternly worded letter, sir.

Re:Or what? (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103075)

Delivered by the US Postal Service, no less.

(If it is still in existence).

Re:Or what? (1)

stevegee58 (1179505) | more than 2 years ago | (#40102961)

OR ELSE!

Re:Or what? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40102993)

else what?

Re:Or what? (0)

Stargoat (658863) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103409)

Else we're gonna be really really mad, screw up our faces and cry. Then you'll be sorry.

Also, we'll send you to Gitmo.

Re:Or what? (5, Insightful)

SerpentMage (13390) | more than 2 years ago | (#40102965)

I completely agree. When people settled North America, Africa, or South America did they say, "oh you know what those are scared lands we will not disturb them." I say tough titty! If you want them, go get them yourselves, otherwise its fair game!

Re:Or what? (1)

berashith (222128) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103229)

not exactly, but those who went did tend to declare the spaces that they landed at as their own, to the point of going to war with anyone who disagreed. Private corporation moon war is gonna make for some kick-ass TV.

Re:Or what? (2, Informative)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103381)

Actually the early colonists signed treaties with the Indians, granting them some land for settling. They didn't just take it. The wars broke-out much later (mid-1700s) when the Indians allied with the French & started fighting back against the British colonists.

And it wasn't until the 1800s that presidents started ignoring the Supreme Court's determination that Indians had a right to stay settled, per the aforementioned treaties, and started forced migrations of them to the west.

And final thought: The number one killer of Indians in both continents was not the white man. It was a little tiny germ called smallpox. The Europeans developed a natural immunity after the Black Plague..... the isolated American Indians never did.

Re:Or what? (1)

berashith (222128) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103553)

all true. I meant to focus on those doing the traveling. The few countries capable of making the trip had to stay well clear of each others's stuff and places. I dont think there were many times that the French told the Spaniards "you can keep florida, Quebec effin rocks" . The use of Indians in the wars was convenient proxy.

Re:Or what? (1)

stoofa (524247) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103473)

I completely agree. When people settled North America, Africa, or South America did they say, "oh you know what those are scared lands we will not disturb them." I say tough titty! If you want them, go get them yourselves, otherwise its fair game!

Never has a typo been so insightful.

Re:Or what? (2)

Relic of the Future (118669) | more than 2 years ago | (#40102969)

Of course not. You'll be fine! For as a long as you stay on the Moon...

Re:Or what? (1)

Technician (215283) | more than 2 years ago | (#40102971)

I was more thinking on the lines of the conspiracy theriosts that would say this was to prevent proving the landing was a hoax.

A nearby landing and photos of the site should be OK though. Walking through existing rover tracks and footprints should remain undisturbed but photographed from a safe distance.

Re:Or what? (1)

Applekid (993327) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103267)

I was more thinking on the lines of the conspiracy theriosts that would say this was to prevent proving the landing was a hoax.

Or plausible deniability when investigators don't actually find anything.*
"Well, sure, you didn't find anything because YOU stole it and wiped out the footprints."

* full disclosure: I'm quite sure we actually went to the moon.

Re:Or what? (1)

durrr (1316311) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103433)

I'm going to revise some history.

I've already got the authentic t-rex bones and rubber feet. SpaceX haven't answered my mails yet but I'm sure they'll donate a rocket or two for such a noble purpose.

Re:Or what? (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#40102977)

I suspect that NASA isn't too worried about anybody staying on the moon long enough to evade them...

Re:Or what? (2, Insightful)

tlhIngan (30335) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103015)

You gonna come up here and get us, NASA?

Yeah, I didn't THINK so.

NASA: No, we'll just wait for you back down here.

Short of establishing a self-sufficient moon base, that's all they'd have to do. Mess with NASA and become a spacer for life. And yes, self-sufficiency is a requirement since you don't know if NASA might infiltrate your Earth bases (you know, for hostages or to ship up compromised supplies...).

Jurisdiction. . . (4, Interesting)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103143)

There's a very legitimate question of jurisdiction. The U.S. has no legal authority over the moon, any more than they do venus or mars.

In essence, it would be kind of a dickish thing to do to mess with historical sites on the moon, but the U.S. government has no legal authority over the moon. I'd say something which has been left unattended for 50+ years would qualify as "abandoned", so it's not like theft laws should apply.

There is the issue that if the craft is a U.S.-based craft, then like ships in international waters, it might carry U.S. jurisdiction around with it wherever it goes, but if it's, I dunno, a Chinese or Russian spacecraft? What's NASA/USGovt gonna do?

Re:Jurisdiction. . . (5, Insightful)

GNUALMAFUERTE (697061) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103301)

The US didn't have jurisdiction over Iraq either. Or over Pakistan, when they killed Osama.

It didn't seem to matter.

Since when does the US government respect any law, internal or international?

Re:Jurisdiction. . . (2)

dougmc (70836) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103537)

but the U.S. government has no legal authority over the moon. I'd say something which has been left unattended for 50+ years would qualify as "abandoned", so it's not like theft laws should apply.

There is the issue that if the craft is a U.S.-based craft, then like ships in international waters, it might carry U.S. jurisdiction around with it wherever it goes, but if it's, I dunno, a Chinese or Russian spacecraft? What's NASA/USGovt gonna do?

There are international salvage laws -- they generally apply to things found in the ocean, but as written they might apply to things in orbit or on the moon too. I don't know.

It also seems quite likely that if the salvage laws don't actually cover the moon yet that the laws will be extended before anybody is actually able to make it up there that isn't a major government -- the US may rely on a strongly worded letter today, now that it doesn't matter, but they will go for something a lot stronger once it begins to matter. And if technology progresses to the point that people can go to the moon on their own without major government assistance, the government will have long since done something to protect the site -- build walls, add guards, perhaps bring the lander back to Earth, etc.

I'm pretty sure that quite a few governments would really like to be able to go back to the moon and stay there a while, if only to stake a claim to it. It's too expensive now, but at some point in the future that may change. I would expect major governments to respect things like the lunar landing site and not disturb it -- but they wouldn't let it stand in the way of them claiming ownership of the moon (or a large part of it) either. Random citizens, if they had a way to get up there, would try to bring it back here to sell on eBay if they could get away with it, or would paint graffiti on it, etc. -- but not major governments. Not officially, anyways.

Re:Jurisdiction. . . (1)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103541)

There's a very legitimate question of jurisdiction. The U.S. has no legal authority over the moon, any more than they do venus or mars.

Says who? If the US claims Jurisdiction over the moon landing sites who has the authoritiy to tell them otherwise? The U.N?

Re:Or what? (1)

sohmc (595388) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103043)

I imagine that Congress would need to write a law similar to the one for a US Citizen traveling overseas for the purpose of engaging in sexual activity with a minor [cornell.edu] (Title 18, Chapter 117, Section 2423, Subsection b).

So yeah, you can mess up the stuff on the moon, but government will find a way to nail you

Re:Or what? (4, Funny)

heypete (60671) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103495)

What, like "US Citizen traveling overseas for the purpose of engaging in sexual activity with a spacecraft"?

That's one hell of a kink...

Re:Or what? (1)

Bigby (659157) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103119)

I would think even the most evil a people would leave the first footprint untouched. As well as the flag. But anything else? Who cares. Maybe leave the golf ball in orbit (if it still is).

Re:Or what? (1)

Squidlips (1206004) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103197)

Alan Sheppard's golf ball never made it into orbit...now THAT would be a hard artifact to find. Worse than Gus Grisom's door...

Re:Or what? (1)

mk1004 (2488060) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103215)

Suppose someone wants to put the flag back up after it fell down?

Re:Or what? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103281)

I think the sites should remain undisturbed; not only do they have the first footprint, but also the remnants of the landers, the flags, and some rovers plus some experimental equipment. It's not like they take up a huge amount of space, they're really quite small.

However, if the rover tracks which span a few miles get disturbed, I'm not too worried about that. Those extend far from the landing sites.

Re:Or what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103603)

Welcome to Honest Yuri's Used Space Vehicle Emporium! Have I got a deal for YOU! Like this vintage low mileage lunar lander! Less than 500,000 kilometers on it, just ONE landing! Owned by little old lady in Kaliningrad who flew it once to vote in glorious elections! She loved democracy so much, she painted American flag on side of lander! A real steal!

Re:Or what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103389)

Is the first footprint still there? Popular couture says yes because the moon has no atmosphere to cause erosion, but we have to remember that fairly powerful rocket thrusters where fired just a few centimetres from the footprint when their capsule took off to moon orbit.

Re:Or what? (1)

Trent Hawkins (1093109) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103393)

Well, they could just leave it there or for a mere 10,000,000 dollars they could carve a nike logo on the foot print.

Re:Or what? (1)

evilviper (135110) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103155)

This just in: The DoD has announced that it is reinstating Project A119, to 'test' the effects of detonating a nuclear weapon on the surface of the moon.

Re:Or what? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103217)

You gonna come up here and get us, NASA?

Yeah, I didn't THINK so.

The US military is quite capable of hurting you anywhere on earth. Unless you plan to stay up there forever, do not taunt the USA.

Re:Or what? (1)

rthille (8526) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103353)

If they can stay up there indefinitely, we're in big trouble: #moonisaharshmistress

Re:Or what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103331)

Exactly, only so far a bureaucratic white-elephant organization can go, and it relies heavily on politically gained resources (theft/taxes). If I could afford it, I'd keep an Apollo landing site intact and undisturbed, and build a freaking resort hotel around it. That'd do far more for the historical value of the place than some UN scheme to keep everyone chained to the planet, where they can be properly controlled.

Re:Or what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103481)

Actually, we are going to send the X-37 Space Twinkie after you and burn you with our free electron laser.

Let the fun and games begin (3, Funny)

ribuck (943217) | more than 2 years ago | (#40102967)

Heh, it would be quite a coup for a less-than-friendly space-faring nation to bring back to earth the Apollo 11 lunar lander (descent stage) as a "trophy"!

Re:Let the fun and games begin (2)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103065)

I suspect the eventual fate will be more like the Judge Dredd story I remember reading as a kid, where he's driving around a city on the Moon and passes the Apollo 11 lander covered in graffiti at the side of the road. Today's historic monument is tomorrow's 'what the heck is that heap of junk?'

Re:Let the fun and games begin (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103103)

Good luck getting an extra 22,000 lbs of metal off the moon and back to earth in one piece. I think the shuttle could have brought it down from leo, but thats gone now. Building a new IIS is probably on part with bringing back the apollo 11 descent stage.

Re:Let the fun and games begin (5, Funny)

david.given (6740) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103593)

Good luck getting an extra 22,000 lbs of metal off the moon and back to earth in one piece.

SpaceX will never develop the technology to do that.

Their vehicles only lift kilograms.

Re:Let the fun and games begin (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103141)

Heh, it would be quite a coup for a less-than-friendly space-faring nation to bring back to earth the Apollo 11 lunar lander (descent stage) as a "trophy"!

Actually, I was expecting Andy Griffith [wikipedia.org] to be the one bringing that one back.

The Eagle...um...Vulture has landed (1)

Walt Sellers (1741378) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103233)

I remember watching him on the Salvage1 tv show way back when.

I recall it inspiring me to think that someone could go if they wanted it badly enough. And that is what the X-Prize foundation is also trying to do.

Re:Let the fun and games begin (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103573)

Have fun getting it though customs, oh and you'll have to wait outside in the vacuum while they inspect your craft before allowing you re-entry.

Posting as AC since this is an extremely stupid post and I do not want it associated with my name.

Yours Truly
    Timothy

They just want to see if ... (1)

acjacinto (1170951) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103025)

the moon landing is fake or not

Flag (4, Funny)

Russ1642 (1087959) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103063)

Anybody up for an epic game of capture the flag?

Just ONE word to nullify what they say (3, Interesting)

erroneus (253617) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103079)

SALVAGE.

They abandoned that stuff out there on a rock in space. They have no intention of doing anything further with it and have no authority over it. How is it not salvage to pick up some leftovers?

Re:Just ONE word to nullify what they say (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103285)

What a fucking dick move.

Re:Just ONE word to nullify what they say (5, Insightful)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103363)

They abandoned that stuff out there on a rock in space. They have no intention of doing anything further with it and have no authority over it. How is it not salvage to pick up some leftovers?

Obviously there is little if anything they can do to prevent it. But the words "gently", "should be", "historic sites", and "guidelines - none of which are particularly enforceable" are there for a reason. As in "This is the first evidence on humans landing on another celestial body. Please don't fuck it up. If you do, A lot of the rest of humanity will think you are a dick."

Re:Just ONE word to nullify what they say (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103581)

Though if you were to repurpose some of the stuff there in a last ditch effort to save some space kittens, I don't think anybody will mind.

Oh come on... (1)

otaku244 (1804244) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103087)

Do we really have to start worrying about Space Pirates?

Re:Oh come on... (2)

Sparticus789 (2625955) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103283)

Ask the Alliance. They didn't like Malcolm Reynolds all that much.

BUY FB !! BUY AS MUCH AS YOU CAN !! BUY !! BUY !! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103091)

Or be a sucker !! Do you want to be a sucker ?? If not then BUY !! BUY !! BUY !! FB !!

Rules? They're more like guidelines... (4, Informative)

JDG1980 (2438906) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103105)

From the original article:

The guidelines do not represent mandatory U.S. or international requirements. NASA provided them to help lunar mission planners preserve and protect historic lunar artifacts and potential science opportunities for future missions.

So basically they're just asking nicely. It doesn't seem like they can actually do anything even if the new spacefarers are based in the United States, and they almost certainly can't do anything if they are based in another country.

Abandoned Salvage (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103115)

According to TFA, there is no treaty or anything governing this. If somebody can bring stufff back and sell it for a few $million to help pay for the mission, I say more power to 'em. An archaeologist is just a pot hunter with friends at a university. Don't believe me? Google around. A lot of these guys end up not being able to house artifacts. The artifacts fall into neglect. In one case they were even dumped into a river which may simply confuse future poth... archeaologists, whatever you want to call them. They'd be better off allowing people to trade these things, and simply requiring records for the pieces they thought were important. People who pay money for something generally take good care of it. Also, you don't end up with a single point of attack for looters.

Re:Abandoned Salvage (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103325)

"Neglect" isn't an issue here. There's no atmosphere on the Moon, so unless something gets hit by a meteorite, it'll look exactly the same until the sun expands and engulfs the Earth and Moon.

Looters or vandals might be a problem if humans ever colonize the moon in serious numbers, but that's probably at least a couple millennia away, at the rate things are going now. When that happens, then we can worry about how best to preserve these sites and relics. For now, the best thing to do is leave them alone.

Re:Abandoned Salvage (1)

lightknight (213164) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103377)

Mmmmmmmmm. Ebay.

"Slightly used Lunar Lander L@@K!!!"

Cool moment in history (5, Interesting)

coldsalmon (946941) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103121)

Anyone else think it's pretty cool that we've reached a point in history where we have to start seriously talking about property rights on the moon?

Re:Cool moment in history (1, Insightful)

Concerned Onlooker (473481) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103333)

Actually, no. I have plenty of mundane things to bring me down already. It's the end of cool as far as I'm concerned.

Re:Cool moment in history (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103367)

Anyone else think it's pretty cool that we've reached a point in history where we have to start seriously talking about property rights on the moon?

I'm not sure why you think it would be cool. NASA isn't claiming any property rights. It's just guidelines for a contest. Other, crazy people, have been claiming property rights for decades. So, talking about it shouldn't be cool any more.

How odd (1, Flamebait)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103127)

I find humanity strange: there's an ENTIRE FUCKING PLANET completely pristine and untouched, waiting to be explored, and all people can think off is returning to a few square miles of it that's already been visited.

It's like a dog coming back to sniff its own poo when there's the rest of the garden to visit.

Re:How odd (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103183)

I don't know about yours, but my dog does that.

Re:How odd (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103195)

That's no planet...

Re:How odd (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103257)

Planet? Was the moon upgraded at the same time Pluto was downgraded?

It's not a planet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103341)

Dude, seriously?

Moon != planet (1)

dutchwhizzman (817898) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103343)

See subject

Re:How odd (1)

ZeroSumHappiness (1710320) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103493)

He's talking Mars, you trolls.

Wonder what the law of space says about this (1)

Mister Liberty (769145) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103145)

other than the US arrogant annex defensive stance of a superpower hasbeen.

Re:Wonder what the law of space says about this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103311)

Why so hostile? The items on the moon from the old landings are Historic sites of human achievement not to different from "UNESCO World heritage sites" on earth the moon landing sites and there preservation belong to all of mankind more than just to just the United States.

Yeah, try telling that to... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103151)

Yeah, try telling that to GRGGGRRRRRGGGGLLL the Conqueror, when he's using the Lunar Lander for target practice... "Ummm, excuse me, that's a historical landmaZZZZAAAAAAAAAPPPPPPPPPPPP

Probably classified. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103163)

Our space endeavors have always been linked to our military. The space race was half propaganda and half missile tech development. The very first satalite we launched was a prototype spy satellite made to test the viability the concept. At the time the official story said it was just a rocketry test and the only official payload was an American flag.

There's probably something embarrassing or still classified up there. Probably experimental but may not be "on message" for what was supposedly a purely scientific project. Or maybe there's an old RTG/portable nuclear reactor leaking dangerous amounts of radiation and they don't want bad bit of PR leaking.

RTGs? (1)

Squidlips (1206004) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103165)

Are there RTG's left at the sites? That would discourage the sticky fingered types...

Re:RTGs? (1)

lightknight (213164) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103387)

And yet you know that some future astronaut will try to charge his / her iPod off of it...

Of Cource (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103173)

It would be a bit embarrassing if someone went there to look at the equipment only to find there is none, so, better forbid it..

You'll see it on Ebay (1)

na1led (1030470) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103185)

starting auction price will be some crazy amount!

So the land grab has begun? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103227)

NASA: we shitted there and now that's our territory.
Russia: we're gonna land/crash something there and make a stinkier shit than you!

you FAIL@ it (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103247)

guy5 are uSually

But, but, but... (2)

KlomDark (6370) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103249)

How can they stay away from something that so many people have told me aren't really there?

If NASA wants to protect their stuff... (2)

tekrat (242117) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103273)

Put a fence around it. Otherwise, it's fair game to whoever gets there next.

Obviously, our time as a Superpower is over, so now we're trying to puff ourselves up to try and scare the next generation of Moon-travelers, which will most likely be the Chinese in 2030.

Either that or Elon Musk will get it all to auction on eBay -- put you gotta use Paypal as your payment method.

Historical site. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103289)

It's not a historical site, if you land on top of it. Then it's just a navigational mishap.

They abandoned them (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103303)

Seriously, for all intents and purposes, NASA abandoned those sites, so they belong to nobody.

Can NASA seriously not drive out... (1)

caknuckle (2521404) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103305)

into the Nevada desert and get it back themselves? And why did they leave it there after filming in the first place..sheesh.

Historical site. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103379)

It's not a historical site, if you land on top of it. Then it's just a navigational mishap.

Shepard's Golf Ball (1)

Virtucon (127420) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103397)

I'd love to get Shepard's Golf Ball. That is the only memento I think we'd want back. The rest of that stuff is just disposable stuff. Unless the US is serious and gets back to the Moon, then how can we claim that those sites are of historic interest? It's time to start staking claims and prospecting!

Re:Shepard's Golf Ball (1)

Stargoat (658863) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103479)

Dagnabit, bakin tweneetree wees all wen up tu da moon. By gumbo itas ard werk, fertyet hurs at ah time cuz oxi were so pensi. Bud di we moan an cari abo like fancy dago footballers? Hell na, we tweneetrees donna go in fer yer wumenee hands. We wurk like gooduns, den and na.

Too bad NASA. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103399)

The moon is mine. I will destroy your artifacts. All MINE.

Silly NASA (0)

zixxt (1547061) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103421)

Still trying convince us that they really landed on the moon. NASA likes to play pretend more than a class of preschoolers.

j/k

Hello? What about that Surveyer 1 camera? (4, Interesting)

saccade.com (771661) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103423)

Geez, NASA doesn't even follow their own rules. You may recall, part of the Apollo 12 landing involved a hike over to the Surveyor 3 [wikipedia.org] landing site. They hack-sawed the camera and several other pieces off the Surveyor probe and brought them home. Still waiting to see if any of it gets posted in eBay...

(Kind of ironic that they took the camera; the Apollo 12 astronauts ineptly fried their camera by pointing it at the sun, and ruined the live TV coverage of the entire mission).

Re:Hello? What about that Surveyer 1 camera? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103517)

Considering these guidelines were written within the past year, I think events that happened 40+ years ago do not qualify as
not following their own rules."

Also, if you had bothered to read the guidelines, you would see that they conceive of different levels of protection at different sites (Apollo 11 of course being the most protected) with certain impacting activities allowed at lesser-protected sites for research purposes.

Because the US has so much respect for history ... (0)

GNUALMAFUERTE (697061) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103425)

Like the respect they showed for important monuments, art and ruins in Iraq ...

Just paint it (1)

MobyDisk (75490) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103431)

Maybe they should just paint it a gaudy orange or pink or give it a mustache, not tell NASA until next time they get there.

Lots of misinfo in the comments... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103435)

Having done a lot of research in space law, I'd like to dispel some of the misconceptions I see being put forth in both the summary and the comments:

1. These are not rules but rather guidelines and are only directly binding on activities conducted by NASA itself.
2. However, they are likely to become de facto conditions for any activities licensed, fully or in part, by the U.S. government or other friendly spacefaring nations. At the present, this covers basically all private space activity.
3. Under the Outer Space Treaty, to which all spacefaring nations are parties, all man-made items on the surface of the moon and other celestial bodies, as well as in orbit, continue to belong to the nations that launched them (with the possible exception of a couple of Soviet landers allegedly sold to Lord British). This policy exists to ensure that launching entities may not absolve themselves of responsibility for damage cause by their objects, on earth or in space, after their use life is over.
4. Space law does not contain notions of salvage as does maritime law. "lost" or otherwise inaccessible objects may not be removed without their owners' permission.
5. It is the U.S. government's position that the lunar landing sites remain active research laboratories studying the long-term effects of the lunar environment on man-made objects. This provides them further protections from non-interference under various space law treaties.
6. None of the other spacefaring nations, China included, are interested in disturbing these sites due to the huge negative backlash they would incur.
7. No substantive laws forbidding people form messing with these sites exist. Many have advocated extending UNESCO World Heritage Site status to the lunar landing sites, but that regime is premised on territorial sovereignty, which cannot exist in space under the OST. Under the property principles outlined above, however, the owners of space objects (here the U.S. govt.) could sue any private party that succeeded in screwing with the landing sites into the ground.

OR WHAT ?? GONNA SHOT US WITH FRICKIN LASERS ?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103449)

We'll just jumped out of the way, like Riker and Data and the rest always (will) do !! And like all those in the Rebellion did a long, long time ago, in a place far, far away !! And seriously, stop reading this crap that doesn't matter one bit !!

I wouldn't dream of messing with them (1)

PPH (736903) | more than 2 years ago | (#40103521)

I'm going to build amusement parks [imdb.com] around those landing sites.

Obvious reason... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40103549)

Of course they don't want anyone going near it.

They can't risk having someone declare that there is no actual landing site and the moon landing never actually happened.

*ducks*

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