Asked in Apollo Moon MissionsThe Moon
Why is there no stars in the moon landing pictures?
August 09, 2011 3:13PM
It is simple as they wee walking in the day time you see.
To understand this, you need to know a little about how cameras work. When the shutter release on a camera is pressed, the shutter opens for a fraction of a second, allowing the light-sensitive material behind the shutter to be exposed. The amount of light that is allowed through is controlled both by how wide the shutter opens (aperture) and for how long it's open (shutter speed). The brighter the object being photographed the less light you want to let through to the film. Too much exposure will create an unrecognizable photograph; you will simply see a white blob. This is critical to understand because it is at the heart of the "missing" stars.
The surface of the moon, in direct sunlight (as it was during the Apollo missions), is very bright. So bright, in fact, that it can create shadows on the Earth in the middle of the night from 238,000 miles away. That fact alone means any camera used on the moon's surface must have the settings as such to no overexpose the film. But the astronauts weren't just taking pictures of the moon; they also took pictures of each other. The cameras used by the crew were set up to take pictures of the lunar surface, other astronauts in white spacesuits, in a bright white environment, in the middle of the lunar morning, in direct sunlight. The fact that no stars showed up in the images is to be expected. Had there been stars there would have been more evidence of a hoax.