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Could NASA Launch a Secret Moon Mission?

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Would it take a Saturn V rocket to get men back on the moon with todays technology? If it could be done with a smaller rocket or even using a Saturn V rocket it could be hiden by doing it in plane sight. Just tell everybody that NASA is now starting to send equipment to the moon for a future moon base. Hence the need for such a big rocket.

If they were going direct they'd have needed an S-V, unless we want to construct some theory involving Skylab (or perhaps, depending on what date we suppose this to have happened, MIR) as a launching pad, which I don't know if it would have been technically feasible, and the problem with that would be that space stations are always visible from Earth, so i doubt if any clandestine activities would remain secret for long.

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Payload for one, the size of the launcher for a moon mission for a satellite are different.

We've progressed in technology since the 60s. You think we'd need something as big as the Saturn V to get to the moon? Why? I'd be willing to bet that the biggest current rockets are wide enough to house all of the lunar modules and orbiters as they were designed back in the 60s. The rest of the payload? Well, as we use new and lighter rocket fuels, the payloads do not need to be as great.

Plus, even satellite launches draw a crowd.

So? A crowd has no idea what really is in the rocket. Furthermore, if the location is secluded enough, there might not even be a crowd.

Following that, if they managed to avoid a crowd, then the Russians and others would be tracking where it went.

Up to a point. Do you think our radar can track something that small all the way to the moon? I doubt it. Furthermore, even if it did and it saw it in orbit of the moon, theres no way at our current technology that we'd be able to detect any part of it landing on the moon. Plus, we've had all sorts of satellites orbit the moon, and even crash objects into the moon. How would any country be able to determine whether that satellite orbiting the moon was not a lunar module?

Finally, much like on the original moon missions, radio operators would have noticed chatter going back an forth between the moon mission and Earth.

Yeah, right. Not if its properly encrypted.

I rather dislike when people use excuses like the above to "disprove" something. It really doesnt disprove anything. You don't want to believe that it's possible, so you conjure up the idea that this and that wouldnt work, and that the "conspiracy" would be too massive to cover up and so on. Do I believe secret moon missions are happening? No. But I can see possible ways for them to accomplish this so I'm not going to sit here telling people that its impossible when really, I have no way to prove that it's impossible.

Remember, thousands upon thousands of people worked on the nuclear bomb... hell, an entire city was constructed to work specifically on the bomb. The explosion was heard by civilians miles and miles away... yet the project remained a secret.

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We've progressed in technology since the 60s. You think we'd need something as big as the Saturn V to get to the moon? Why? I'd be willing to bet that the biggest current rockets are wide enough to house all of the lunar modules and orbiters as they were designed back in the 60s. The rest of the payload? Well, as we use new and lighter rocket fuels, the payloads do not need to be as great.

It's not to do with width, it's to do with thrust. Do we use new & lighter rocket fuels?

Up to a point. Do you think our radar can track something that small all the way to the moon? I doubt it. Furthermore, even if it did and it saw it in orbit of the moon, theres no way at our current technology that we'd be able to detect any part of it landing on the moon. Plus, we've had all sorts of satellites orbit the moon, and even crash objects into the moon. How would any country be able to determine whether that satellite orbiting the moon was not a lunar module?

I'm pretty sure that even in the 70s, they could. Not to mention all the amateur astronomers who'd surely notice something suspicious going on.

Edited by 747400

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We've progressed in technology since the 60s. You think we'd need something as big as the Saturn V to get to the moon? Why? I'd be willing to bet that the biggest current rockets are wide enough to house all of the lunar modules and orbiters as they were designed back in the 60s. The rest of the payload? Well, as we use new and lighter rocket fuels, the payloads do not need to be as great.

The Ares V was designed to be the "replacement", so to speak, for the Saturn V using "today's technology". It was almost as tall as the Saturn V and could only carry about 2/3 the payload, give or take, of the Saturn V.

Its not the technology that determines the size of a launcher, its the weight of the payload and its destination.

So? A crowd has no idea what really is in the rocket. Furthermore, if the location is secluded enough, there might not even be a crowd.

If there are crowds, someone's going to ask what's being launched. Not a "show-stopper", but rather annoying if ou're trying to hide what you're launching.

Up to a point. Do you think our radar can track something that small all the way to the moon? I doubt it.

Currently it is possible to track debris as small as a few inches in orbit. And besides, why would radar be the only way to track it when there are plenty of third-party sources that tracked Apollo using optical telescopes...?

Furthermore, even if it did and it saw it in orbit of the moon, theres no way at our current technology that we'd be able to detect any part of it landing on the moon. Plus, we've had all sorts of satellites orbit the moon, and even crash objects into the moon. How would any country be able to determine whether that satellite orbiting the moon was not a lunar module?

The radio signals from an object in orbit of the Moon would exhibit doppler shifting as it moved around the Moon. If an object landed, that shifting would stop. That would be pretty good evidence that something landed, however, not necessarily evidence of what it was.

I rather dislike when people use excuses like the above to "disprove" something. It really doesnt disprove anything. You don't want to believe that it's possible, so you conjure up the idea that this and that wouldnt work, and that the "conspiracy" would be too massive to cover up and so on. Do I believe secret moon missions are happening? No. But I can see possible ways for them to accomplish this so I'm not going to sit here telling people that its impossible when really, I have no way to prove that it's impossible.

Well, its a free board and if you post something that someone doesn't agree with, you should be prepared to have your opinions countered, or to at least have the flaws pointed out.

Remember, thousands upon thousands of people worked on the nuclear bomb... hell, an entire city was constructed to work specifically on the bomb. The explosion was heard by civilians miles and miles away... yet the project remained a secret.

And yet, as secret as the Manhattan Project was, it was still subject to espionage by the Soviets.

Cz

Edited by Czero 101

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We've progressed in technology since the 60s. You think we'd need something as big as the Saturn V to get to the moon? Why? I'd be willing to bet that the biggest current rockets are wide enough to house all of the lunar modules and orbiters as they were designed back in the 60s. The rest of the payload? Well, as we use new and lighter rocket fuels, the payloads do not need to be as great.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but at the moment we're talking about a 18th Apollo mission, using Apollo technology?

If you want to argue modern day, up to the retirement of the shuttle it was still required to use large ground shaking rockets which were for relatively short low orbit missions.

You'd need a rocket with enough force to push a moon lander, the astronauts, and all supplies to the moon and back.

Launchers for satellites are not large enough to provide enough force.

As for tracking the launch, India was actively tracking the Chandryan probe up to the point it crashed into the surface of the moon, as was the LRO mission. Those are much smaller than what would be used with a manned mission.

Further, you'd have (hopefully) something returning FROM the moon which would raise several flags among governments.

Yeah, right. Not if its properly encrypted.

To which would be asked why the data is encrypted.

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And just what exactly is stopping them from launching from a secluded location and claiming it to be a satellite launch?

I think the military could launch a rocket and claim it was anything--or nothing at all, just a classified project. That's not the hard part and it's done all the time.

The hard part would be to prevent people from detecting a spacecraft on the way to the moon, which would require some kind of cover story. Call it an unmanned lunar probe or something to disguise its true purpose.

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As for tracking the launch, India was actively tracking the Chandryan probe up to the point it crashed into the surface of the moon, as was the LRO mission. Those are much smaller than what would be used with a manned mission.

Further, you'd have (hopefully) something returning FROM the moon which would raise several flags among governments.

Like I mentioned hide it in plane site. Call it a mission to deliver equipment to the moon and return with samples. Code the radio chatter and call it communications with the remote lander. I think it would be easy to hide the nature of the mission and just sell the public on some bs story. Who's going to question it.

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Like I mentioned hide it in plane site. Call it a mission to deliver equipment to the moon and return with samples. Code the radio chatter and call it communications with the remote lander. I think it would be easy to hide the nature of the mission and just sell the public on some bs story. Who's going to question it.

Dunno, seems someone would want to know why it's so big.

Not saying they couldn't do it, just that it seems difficult and overly complicated, especially while all the other moon missions were so public.

Edited by ShadowSot

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Well, call me confused...but wouldn't a projectile being blasted off the face of the planet be visible to just about anyone with a telescope?

I mean, they can call it whatever they want but still, it's a giant freaking bullet being shot off the planet.

The "gummint" would have to make sure that NO ONE has a telescope.

So I'll go with NO.

Nibs

Edited by HerNibs

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Dunno, seems someone would want to know why it's so big.

Not saying they couldn't do it, just that it seems difficult and overly complicated, especially while all the other moon missions were so public.

I can't really say this could have been done in the early 70's with an excuse of landing equipment for a moon base hence the need for such a big rocket but today we would buy that. Maybe the could have done it back then now that I think about. Or maybe appolo 17 was actually appolo 18 :ph34r:

Edited by The Silver Thong

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Here we are on page 3 when the 2nd post got the answer right.

Clinton could not keep secret an adventure, Watergate revealed but yeah a secret moon landing involving thousands of people, suppliers,companies etc could be kept secret, for sure.

There's no way they could have kept it secret.

Anyone watch the last Transformers movie? Didn't they have some kind of plotline about keeping that mission secret too.

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And just what exactly is stopping them from launching from a secluded location and claiming it to be a satellite launch?

Because there's a little more to sending an Apollo mission into space than three guys jumping into a rocket.

There's only one place that has/had the capability for manned missions and that's Cape Canaveral.

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Although the Shuttle program was run by NASA, there were a number of flights controlled by the Pentagon and we were told these were secret payloads. It is interesting that when the Shuttle was being designed in the 1970s there was a plan to install nuclear engines which could send it to Mars. OF course, we are told that they never went through with this plan, but the nuclear engines were being tested in Nevada called NERVA. Maybe those shuttles that were destroyed really were not and were sent into deep space.

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Because there's a little more to sending an Apollo mission into space than three guys jumping into a rocket.

And theres a little more to detonating an atomic bomb than there is to a munition stockpile accidentally exploding. Whats your point?

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Although the Shuttle program was run by NASA, there were a number of flights controlled by the Pentagon and we were told these were secret payloads. It is interesting that when the Shuttle was being designed in the 1970s there was a plan to install nuclear engines which could send it to Mars. OF course, we are told that they never went through with this plan, but the nuclear engines were being tested in Nevada called NERVA. Maybe those shuttles that were destroyed really were not and were sent into deep space.

The DoD payload flights were not "controlled" by the Pentagon, they were run from Mission Control like all the other flights. The mission was to put the payloads into a planned LEO, then after the shuttle departed the area, the DoD would take control and do with the satellite as it required for it's mission. It was just another payload to put into orbit so far as the Shuttle team was concerned...but with obvious "handling" differences.

As for NERVA, I'm not sure this one even got into space for testing. And Challenger and Columbia really didn't disintegrate before our eyes? That's a stretch, to put it mildly...

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Yep, as a kid I saw the last shuttle go up to Mir. It was amazing on so many levels.

Yep, the sonic booms on re-entry descent have made me jump a couple of times, especially the early morning ones. Almost like the house windows are going to blow out, the dog goes nuts. :lol:

Edited by Spid3rCyd3

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What about Woomera? It's where just about every man and their dog launches rockets from.

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Yep, the sonic booms on re-entry descent have made me jump a couple of times, especially the early morning ones. Almost like the house windows are going to blow out, the dog goes nuts. :lol:

Re entry into the middle of the Pacific, you wouldn;t hear a thing. If it was said to be just a recovery of some samples from the moon have it enter were ever you like. How would you have any idea what the recovery was for but returning lunar samples. If that`s what they said then thats what they said. Try to argue it lol

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I find it hard to believe that a rocket the size of a Saturn 5 could have taken off without a single soul seeing it going or catching it on camera even in the 70's ...

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There is no reason for a secret manned to the moon any ways. Since national security was not the reason we went to the moon. The real question is how could they hide a manned mission to the moon?

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I think this is a film and requires a suspension of disbelief as most fiction does..

I agree. I haven't seen the film as yet, but I think I am going to enjoy it... as fiction. It's like "Capricorn 1" - errors and holes you could sail an aircraft carrier through, but if you just forget that, it's a very good movie.

I still say Telly Savalas stole the movie, with Karen Black a close second.

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Re entry into the middle of the Pacific, you wouldn;t hear a thing. If it was said to be just a recovery of some samples from the moon have it enter were ever you like. How would you have any idea what the recovery was for but returning lunar samples. If that`s what they said then thats what they said. Try to argue it lol

Sorry, I didn't mean the Apollo capsules. I guess the booms are probably when it's (the shuttle) landing (at KSC). It's really loud, the whole house shakes. :P

MID can probly vouch for me, surprised he's not commented in this thread yet.

Edited by Spid3rCyd3

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No! in the 80's the U.S. launched a rocket from Norway to the North pole (for some stupid reason), the message was past down to the big cheese in Russia, who thought i MAY have been an act of war, bla! bla! bla! Any way they must inform other countries!!

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No! in the 80's the U.S. launched a rocket from Norway to the North pole (for some stupid reason), the message was past down to the big cheese in Russia, who thought i MAY have been an act of war, bla! bla! bla! Any way they must inform other countries!!

Norway has a sounding rocket launch site and they do a lot of research launches...much like Wallops Island, VA and White Sands, NM. But these days, ALL launches are announced and all interested parties are informed, just to avoid any unpleasant scares...it's a Treaty thing. Makes real good sense.

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