Writer's Guide to Government Information

Resources to inject real life detail into your fiction

Archive for the tag “apollo”

What did the Apollo 12 landing site look like from the surface?

In my entry for Moon – data.nasa.gov, I claim you can answer the question “What did the Apollo 12 landing site look like from the surface?” with this resource. Here’s how:

  1. Visit the site and click on Apollo Surface Panoramas. This is a description of the resource.
  2. Click on the Apollo Surface Panaromas that appears at the top of the page.
  3. Click on the first photo for Apollo 12. You will get the photo below along with links to individual frame and other information and features.


Apollo 12 panorama

Once you’re at the panorama, be sure to take advantage of the zoom and pan option, the photos are incredible detailed.

Moon – data.nasa.gov is just one of a number of Moon-related resources in Writer’s Guide to Government Information.


Apollo Missions page (Apollo)

Apollo Missions page (Apollo) – http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/apollo/missions/index.html

Representative questions that can be answered with this resource:

  • What did the control panel for the lunar module look like?
  • What six alternative missions were envisioned for Apollo 11 if it could not meet its objective of landing on the moon?
  • When was the first lunar rover used?


This site will give you all the details of every mission. Just click on the appropriate Apollo mission on the right hand side of the screen, then click “get more information.” This will bring up a page with the mission patch, personnel, mission milestones and a summary of the mission.

For a far greater amount of material for each mission, click on “Apollo Lunar Surface Journal.” This link takes you to the Apollo Press Kits. These documents are a few hundred pages each and are detailed mission briefings including what actions would be taken in the event the mission needed to be aborted.

For details on how to describe Apollo spacecraft without digging through the the Press Kits, click on “Apollo Spacecraft Drawings.” which bring up a scrollable window of various parts of the command and lunar modules sent to the Moon.

These details may come in handy for describing early space flight on other worlds, or for stories set during the Apollo program. It might also aid in stories of future lunar exploration that visit old Apollo sites.

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