Top 10 Apollo Hoax Theories

In honor of the anniversary of the moon landing, has an article listing (and debunking) the top 10 Apollo Hoax Theories. Below are the top 10 points raised by those who believe the moon landing was a hoax. You'll have to read the article to get the explanation of why these points DON'T prove that the moon landing was a hoax.

#10. Fluttering Flag: The American flag appears to wave in the lunar wind.
#9. Glow-in-the-Dark Astronauts: If the astronauts had left the safety of the Van Allen Belt the radiation would have killed them.
#8. The Shadow Knows: Multiple-angle shadows in the Moon photos prove there was more than one source of light, like a large studio lamp.
#7. Fried Film: In the Sun, the Moon's temperature is toasty 280 degrees F. The film (among other things) would have melted.
#6. Liquid Water on the Moon: To leave a footprint requires moisture in the soil, doesn't it?
#5. Death by Meteor: Space is filled with super-fast micro meteors that would punch through the ship and kill the astronauts.
#4. No Crater at Landing Site: When the Lunar Excursion Module (LEM) landed, its powerful engine didn't burrow a deep crater in the "dusty surface."
#3. Phantom Cameraman: How come in that one video of the LEM leaving the surface, the camera follows it up into the sky? Who was running that camera?
#2. Big Rover: There's no way that big moon buggy they were driving could have fit into that little landing module!
#1. Its Full of Stars!: Space is littered with little points of lights (stars). Why then are they missing from the photographs?

Exploration/Travel Science

Posted on Wed Jul 20, 2005

More content from the Hoax Museum:


I have addressed your comment about the stars. I don't know if they mentioned them or not, I haven't gone through the transcripts of their interviews. However, even if they never mentioned stars at any point that hardly counts as evidence of a hoax. It would be odd yes, but far from damning.

I'm unsure what your 'half ton' remark refers to, I can't remember everything I've ever said. Possibly about weight on the moon. Regardless, I wasn't the one making the decisions on what was important to the mission and what wasn't. I simply stated that radiation detecting equipment might not have been considered important. Space, and weight, were both very precious commodities on the landers. Little things add up quickly, which is why they had to itemize everything they took with them. Of course they did smuggle some personal things such as a collapsible golf club and balls, but that's a far cry from radiation detecting gear.

Apollo truthseekers do not need to answer the question of why a nation did this or that to prove anything. HOw could we or even you know that answer.

You do if you want anyone to take you credibly. You're the ones making the argument, you have to support it with facts. If we refute those facts then it's your responsibility to refute our refutation.

We point to inconsistencies in the story and compare it with science and common sense, i.e., the temperatures of the surface of the moon and the effects of temperature and radiation on film...


... the fact that there is clear evidence of the flag waving when no one is around it...


...the discrepencies of the shadows...

Not refuted because you've yet to point these discrepancies, if they exist, out.
Posted by Charybdis  in  Hell  on  Tue Jun 26, 2007  at  04:58 PM sound from the engines even tho there was hardly much separating the astronauts from the intense heat and noise from the jet engines...

Cites please? I know of no such issue, though I do know that the engines only ran for extremely short periods of time.

...the lethal power of the Van Allen Radiation belts.

The Van Allen belts aren't lethal. I'm unaware of anyone, other than hoax conspiracists, who states otherwise. Even Van Allen himself discounted this hypothesis.

YOu say the light from the sun would reflect from the surface of the moon and make the stars unobservable, yet 7 percent of the light the moon reflects, according to NASA, would be reflected in straight lines and would not interfere with an observer's vision who would be looking upwards.

Um, I never said an astronaut looking up from the lunar surface would not see stars. I said that an astronaut who had the lunar surface, the sun, or possibly the earth in their field of view at the same time would have their pupils dilate because of the light. This would limit low-light vision enough that stars wouldn't necessarily be visible. Cameras of the day would have had a similar issue, though because of exposure time rather than pupil dilation.

And finally, I don't get paid to respond on this forum, unlike yourself who has to keep up the conspiracy theory. I am hypothesizing you work for this website, and you are no doubt located somewhere on the dark side of the moon.

This is simply a stupid last-ditch ad-hominem attack because you have no real argument and are afraid to admit it, even to yourself.
Posted by Charybdis  in  Hell  on  Tue Jun 26, 2007  at  04:58 PM
Ahh, I seem to have skipped a post. I now understand the half-ton reference.

Of course, this half-ton occurred over several different mission, not all at once. It also would have replaced items taken to the moon and left there, like the lunar rover.

As for being a small sampling, compared to the trillions of tons of rock on the moon I'd have to say half a ton is pretty small indeed.

Wow, this tremendous observation of yours must really prove the Apollo missions were real. Why don't you offer anything to prove it? Instead, you attack my mesage by saying I have not read the previous posts, as if they answered all those questions which they do not. When you have no proof to the contrary, you attack the person offering legitimate questions and presenting research by NASA itself that contradicts their story.

And yet you never point out the error in my statement. Is this because you're unable to? Your conspiracy theory falls apart without concocting another one to support it. Then you concoct a third one about me because you're unable to actually attack my argument itself.

Provide one, just one, bit of REAL evidence for your theory. Just one person who undeniably worked on the lunar landings who can show them to be a hoax.
Posted by Charybdis  in  Hell  on  Tue Jun 26, 2007  at  05:11 PM
Ed, every one of your points has been dealt with previously. If you don't want to accept them, I nor anyone else can't make you. There are sites that have been referenced that disprove every one of your claims. Disprove - period. Your entire argument - it isn't a real theory since that requires facts - is based upon misunderstanding and ignorance, willful ignorance.
Posted by Christopher Cole  in  Tucson, AZ  on  Tue Jun 26, 2007  at  06:16 PM
QUOTE:Your conspiracy theory falls apart without concocting another one to support it. Then you concoct a third one about me because you're unable to actually attack my argument itself.

So you are telling us you do not work for this website?
Posted by Ed  in  lunar orbit  on  Wed Jun 27, 2007  at  12:34 PM
I volunteer my time as a mod on this website. This is an unpaid position - I didn't even receive free copies of Alex's books, I purchased them myself.

But without even garnering this little bit of information you have accused me of taking money specifically to counter your claims. This is a big website with many other topics being discussed here. This thread and your claims are simply a very small part of that whole. To assume that you and your claims are important enough to warrant somebody here being paid to counter you is the height of arrogance. It would be much easier to simply delete this thread and not allow you to post at all, yet you are given free reign to post your misinformation so long as you remain within the bounds of decent and acceptable behaviour.

So you might want to rethink your little persecution complex a bit. It belittles you and your argument when your only recourse is to resort to personal attacks.
Posted by Charybdis  in  Hell  on  Wed Jun 27, 2007  at  03:29 PM
Chary, I was only curious. Since you are the only one to challenge the claims, Christopher every once in awhile will, but since you respond every time, then one may wonder if this person or persons is being paid to keep the topic(s) going. Reasonable and responsible of me to uncover that unknown.

I just don't understand your pity party you have going on.
Posted by Ed  in  lunar orbit  on  Wed Jun 27, 2007  at  04:13 PM

Listen to the subtext in Ed's post: Let It Go. Ed's an Unsinkable Rubber Ducky on this issue, as conspiracy theorists tend to be. You've put the data out there for anyone who wants it; stop wasting your time pushing the ducky to the bottom of the bathtub again... and again... and again.

Maybe you get a kick out of it, of course, but to switch metaphors in midstream my impression is you're more scratching an itch - and trust me, that won't make it better!
Posted by outeast  in  Prague, Czech Rep  on  Thu Jun 28, 2007  at  02:15 AM
Wow! Some truly stupid questions in here. I couldn't read through all of the comments because they were so absurd! Some people really need a crash course in what lies beyond the earth's atmosphere, the brightness of the sun when taking photgraphs in space, and the (OH MY GOD) radical idea of ground-based (that is - earth-based) motion-controlled camera photography! This is one of the most laughable web sites I've ever stumbled across! I want to read each individual post - and respond accordingly. This is my first time here, but it's obvious-as-hell that we have some totally clueless people posting in here!! Good for some real belly laughs! I'll check back in, later......
*snork* *guffaw* *snicker*
Posted by bananastand  in  San Francisco, CA  on  Fri Jun 29, 2007  at  09:38 PM
These are some of the most naive, the most incredibly funny, the most unbelieveably dumb comments I have ever read! It's one goddamn laugh riot after another! I have to read them all, individually - on my time - to respond with some very factual information for you poor lost little lambs who never believed that we went to the moon! But this sampling of comments....this is priceless!! A true joy! This needs to be seen by everyone in the astronaut office at JSC! I hope that it has already made it there.
Posted by bananastand  in  San Francisco, CA  on  Fri Jun 29, 2007  at  09:50 PM
Dear Bananas,

I am heading back to earth and would greatly appreciate some *very* factual information (as opposed to slightly factual) to help me understand that the USA went to the moon.

Please respond to the postings of your choice, if you can make it through the postings without getting a tummy ache from laughing so hard.

Maybe you have the influence to have some astronuts at JSC respond, on their free time. That would be super!

Hey! I have another great idea, maybe you can get some astronuts to go to the moon on their free time and send us all back postcards! If they need help with finances for the journey, I can send some rolls of tinfoil in order that they may re-foil the lunar lander.

Thanking you in advance...
Posted by Ed  in  headed back to earth  on  Wed Jul 11, 2007  at  11:46 AM
How were all the moon missions, space craft and astronauts, spared from these meteorites that would have ripped through the craft and space- suited astronauts as they reportedly do to the moon rocks? And how could they survive the nuclear reactions from the highest energy cosmic rays?

I suppose bananastand would say this is an extremely dumb and naive question.

"Apollo moon rocks are peppered with tiny craters from meteoroid impacts," explains McKay. This could only happen to rocks from a planet with little or no atmosphere... like the Moon.

Meteoroids are nearly-microscopic specks of comet dust that fly through space at speeds often exceeding 50,000 mph -- ten times faster than a speeding bullet. They pack a considerable punch, but they're also extremely fragile. Meteoroids that strike Earth's atmosphere disintegrate in the rarefied air above our stratosphere. (Every now and then on a dark night you can see one -- they're called meteors.) But the Moon doesn't have an atmosphere to protect it. The tiny space bullets can plow directly into Moon rocks, forming miniature and unmistakable craters.

Just as meteoroids constantly bombard the Moon so do cosmic rays, and they leave their fingerprints on Moon rocks, too. "There are isotopes in Moon rocks, isotopes we don't normally find on Earth, that were created by nuclear reactions with the highest-energy cosmic rays."
Posted by Ed  in  lunar orbit  on  Fri Jul 13, 2007  at  11:36 AM
Ed, there is a bit of information you don't have. Meteorites are not a constant threat. In the 4,000,000,000 years (give or take) that havve passed since the formation of the Solar System the planets have cleaned out the vast majority of meteorites so that the density is extremely low and meteorites cluster into predictable groups. The average mass of the Solar System is around 1 gram per cubic centimeter if I remember right. This includes the planets and the Sun. This means that the chance of getting hit by one is extremly slim especially if you schedule around the known clusters. Cosmic rays are also not uniformly constant. There are always some but the amount varies widely. The missions were scheduled for periods when the level was expected to be low. Further information gathered over the decades has improved the prediction level and the protection level against cosmic rays but the pioneers were bombarded and damage was done. If I remember right, it was even reported at the time that the damage done was lower than expected. However, I don't know where anyone could verify that memory.

And, by the way, the Moon does have an atmosphere. It is extremly thin but it does exist.
Posted by Christopher Cole  in  Tucson, AZ  on  Fri Jul 13, 2007  at  01:38 PM
the 'SLS laser' has my full attention; they use a vacuum chamber to melt titanium & steel. vacuum of space/radiation waves? wink
Posted by yo simiti sam  in  in your eye  on  Tue Oct 02, 2007  at  04:50 AM
I thought some of your answers are funny so I decided to post a bit around here.

Some one said:
"Apollo moon rocks are peppered with tiny craters from meteoroid impacts," explains McKay. This could only happen to rocks from a planet with little or no atmosphere... like the Moon."

I say:
No they look that way because of the constant proton bombardment (cosmic ray)
In fact the moon is radioactive it's self, protons
impact the lunar surface causing gamma spray, tehniclay it's a small nuclrear explosion, the particles impacting the lunar surface are high energy particles in the form of electons and protons, particles running here on earth in particle generators are a weak copy of the cosmic ray, when you take an X-ray they put led shielding on you and those particles that are hitting your body for a very short time are nothing compared to the galactic cosimc ray.

Apollo astro-nots did not have proper protection for efective shielding, the main reason I think they never went to the moon is radiation.
Posted by astro-not  on  Wed Dec 12, 2007  at  02:36 AM
Astro-not offers a good observation concerning not having proper protection against the radiation. I mean, are there any blue green planets that we can readily observe nearby? I don't know of any. And that seems to me to be because outerspace is a hostile environment not conducive to support life as we know it. Amazing how this planet can support life. And to think that a man or woman can just jump into a "space" suite and wisk away to the moon and survive the harshest of environments is laughable. "I'll just suite up and get in my tin can and to the moon, Alice!"

And where the heck does Christopher get his information? "Solar system has cleaned out the vast majority of meteorites" and "meteorites cluster in predictable groups"(is he talking about the rings of Saturn?)and "mass of solar system is one gram per cubic centimeter, if I remember right"?

And, Chris, what kind of damage was done to the pioneers, that is, if your memory serves correctly? NASA Science says the moon does not have an atmosphere but Chris says it does, but it's vewy vewy vewy tiny. Are you implying NASA is lying, Chris? Or do just cherry pick the info that best suites your non-arguments? But look at me...I 'm using NASA's own info to disprove themselves. I guess I'm a cherry picker too.
Posted by Ed  in  Saturn's Rings  on  Wed Dec 12, 2007  at  09:07 AM
The moon does have an atmosphere created by humans (exhaust, escaped gases, ect), but it's so thin as to be negligable. The moon does not have its own atmosphere because the surface gravity is too low to retain one for a cosmic length of time.

Humans suit up and survive the harsh environment of space all the time. Hundred of people have been in space. Are they all part of the coverup? How come not one of those hundreds of people has ever 'broken the coverup'?
Posted by Charybdis  in  Hell  on  Wed Dec 12, 2007  at  10:10 AM
Ed, I had to reread my post to understand the "pioneers" bit. I was, at to my mind, obviously talking about the pioneers in space and the comment was inclusive of the humans and their equipment. As far as the atmosphere of the Moon, it is extremely thin and was only discovered years after the Appollo missions by measuring the minute refractions it causes to the stars in the background. It is so slight and thin that it could reasonably be called thin or non-existant, just like a soda that has only half a calorie a serving can be said to have "no calories".
Posted by Christopher Cole  in  Tucson, AZ  on  Wed Dec 12, 2007  at  11:30 AM
Charybdis says that humans created the moon's atmosphere.

How long is a "cosmic length of time"? Is it less than a nanosecond or less than the amount of time it took me to laugh at the thought of humans affecting the moon with escaped SUV gasses?

I suppose you think global warming is caused by humans also? hahahahahah

Humans suite up and survive the thin atmosphere in orbit, 300 miles up. Not 150,000 miles up on the moon.

So, Chris, what damage was done to the pioneers? I know the first Apollo mission exploded on the launch pad. But what of the others?
AND, NASA Science says the moon has no atmosphere. What's your source for claiming it does (the SUV that Charybdis drives and that contributes to the moon's atmosphere ?)

Gosh, I've missed you guys:)!
Posted by Ed  in  side your head  on  Wed Dec 12, 2007  at  03:49 PM
Charybdis says that humans created the moon's atmosphere.

Why, yes I did. Thanks for paying attention.

I'm not sure how long the atmosphere will last, but it won't be on the order of millions of years. Any natural atmosphere the moon ever possessed has long since dissapated into space.

You're making some outlandish claims here, Ed. Have you any evidence to support them at all? Please cite specifics on why you believe humans cannot survive a trip to the moon.

Oh, and Apollo 1 didn't explode, it caught fire and burned. You had the right idea, though, the capsule and crew were lost. Not sure what this has to do with a moon landing, though.

The moon has no meaningful atmosphere. The vacuum is greater than that reproducible on Earth, meaning it's pretty darn scarce. It is not, however, a greater vacuum than interplanetary space. Close, but not exactly. The fact of the matter is that even a single small rocket landing on the moon releases gases that will constitute an atmosphere, however nebulous. To all intents and purposes this is ignored because it's just that thin, so NASA is perfectly justified in saying the moon has no atmosphere. Of course I'm not sure why you value their opinion so highly since you seem to believe they never actually checked, but logic doesn't seem to be playing a part here.

Please explain why you believe I drive an SUV? Is this more of your shoddy 'proof'?
Posted by Charybdis  in  Hell  on  Wed Dec 12, 2007  at  04:33 PM
Ed, I was referring to the damage to the pioneering equipment. I don't remember the details, hell's teeth and pogo sticks, this was almost four decades ago, but I think the reference is to damage to the equipment such as the capsule.
And Ed, while my personal library is around four thousand books (ten full bookcases and overflowing) I have also read probably another thousand or so books I got from libraries. I have also read, and sometimes subscribed to, vvarious scientific magazines such as Discover, Scientific American, Astronomy, etc. If you expect me to remember the exact date I read a specific item of information, get a life. I do not have room tostore every magazine I have ever owned. I barely have room for my books. So, I remember reading that there is an extremely slight atmosphere on the Moon, Charybdis may be right in that it is leftover from the exhausts from our missions there, I don't remember reading one way or another on that detail.
Posted by Christopher Cole  in  Tucson, AZ  on  Fri Dec 14, 2007  at  12:34 PM
Show us the flag! Google the Hubble telescope with the coordinates of the first moon landing and show us the flag. case closed.
Posted by nchilds  in  U.S.A.  on  Sun Aug 24, 2008  at  08:56 PM
RE: Different Shadow Angles In Photos
There is a photo of the moon
Posted by RV  in  USA  on  Thu Aug 28, 2008  at  05:32 AM
Maybe they did land on the moon and cleverly made it look like a fake because what they really found there they don't want anyone to know about.
Posted by rover  on  Fri Jan 02, 2009  at  01:07 PM
Christopher Cole:
"As far as the atmosphere of the Moon, it is extremely thin and was only discovered years after the Appollo missions by measuring the minute refractions it causes to the stars in the background."

oh, yes, thank you for mentioning the stars...when none of the astronuts did. As a matter of fact, when asked about the star question in the press conference upon Apollo 11's 'return' to planet earth, the astronauts said they did not remember seeing any stars. Man, that's a huge fudge-up on their part to miss the brighter than life stars. But, I guess they were too busy hitting golfballs around on the lunar 19th crater-hole...or was that another mission with Arnold Palmer?
Posted by Ed  in  lunar orbit  on  Fri Jan 09, 2009  at  12:43 PM
It wasn't a fudge, it was exactly what you would expect. Full daylight on the surface of the moon - their pupils were too contracted to allow much starlight in. It's exactly the same reason the photos don't show any stars, the brighter objects around them wash the faint stars out. It is perfectly normal and is to be expected, and anything otherwise would be out of place.

Your (presumed) assumption that the stars would be clearly visible while on the surface of the moon is just wrong.
Posted by Charybdis  in  Hell  on  Fri Jan 09, 2009  at  02:48 PM
Oh, and welcome back Ed, assuming you're the same Ed from before. smile

And if you are the same Ed you should remember that we've already done the 'I don't recall any stars' argument on this thread. But then I guess it's been long enough that we can start over from the beginning and pretend that we haven't already debunked your claims and arguments. That's how these things go -

Evidence explaining/debunking claim
Ignore evidence/throw new claim out there
Evidence explaining/debunking new claim
Ignore evidence and start all over with first claim
Posted by Charybdis  in  Hell  on  Fri Jan 09, 2009  at  02:51 PM
Christopher brought the star subject in light again. But Chary said:

"It's exactly the same reason the photos don't show any stars, the brighter objects around them wash the faint stars out."

However, Chris says, " As far as the atmosphere of the Moon, it is extremely thin and was only discovered years after the Appollo missions by measuring the minute refractions it causes to the stars in the background."

YOu can't have it both ways. Either there were stars in the pictures or not. AND, if you say, 'well, they adjusted the cameras to capture the light of the stars,' then why didn't the crew say they saw stars on the moon?

YOu and Chris really cancel each other out sometimes. But I'm over the stars and ready to start a new discussion...
Posted by Ed  in  Lunar orbit  on  Tue Jan 13, 2009  at  10:47 AM
Moon could hold water for lunar base?‏

Gosh golly! I sure wish that NASA had the foresight to look ahead into the future as to what new discoveries could be made on the moon. I guess they thought it was just a big rock and they didn't want to travel another 320,000 miles roundtrip again. Afterall, they had done it..what 6 times successfully before and what's the use of continuing going back to that big ole mysterious rock full of unkown possibilities after going there safely 6 times already?

Instead, in NASA's infinite wisdom, the space program focused on earth's orbit. Travelling 300 miles above earth is much better than travelling that nasty, boring journey to the moon and back.

So NASA proves they can go to the moon, an accomplishment that Nixon claimed to be the most brilliant since the dawn of man, but decides it won't do it anymore...even they have never lost a man in space. They're just going to focus on filtering water on the space shuttle in earth's orbit.

But we did go to the moon right?!!! NASA says so! And besides, we have all that tv footage! It was on tv! It must be real! TV always broadcasts real images right?! The government would have no reason of keeping anything from us, right? It was on tv and in tv we trust!!!!!!!!!!! If it's on tv it must be real....except for the special effects on the science fiction stations. duh! those aren't real! anyone would know how to differientiate between special effects on tv and real images on tv! If it's on a sci-fi station it is fake and if it is on the abc-nbc-cbs-cnn-fox news channels it's real. Right?

Oh, but wait! wait! Americans are going back to the moon! Probably not before 2020. um...i guess they lost their navigation maps or the formula for space exploration got misplaced?
Posted by Ed  in  lunar orbit  on  Tue Jan 13, 2009  at  10:54 AM
Operation Paperclip

Oh, here's the reason to believe NASA! Welcome, reader, to the world of NAZI NASA! Just because the Nazis were the enemy of the USA doesn't mean they didn't do what they claimed, right? um, so an enemy of a nation is put in charge of that nation's space program...probably the most important program in the USA's history! It's tantamount to having the North Koreans 'fix' our economy!

And we should expect to believe them due to the grainy, suspect, film footage? That's really the only evidence we have...the moon rocks were said to be from Antartica where Von Braun went on an expidition before Apollo 11. The rest of the evidence basically rests on pure, naive belief that the government would not lie to hide things. I digress...

from the article:

"Sixty years ago the US hired Nazi scientists to lead pioneering projects, such as the race to conquer space. These men provided the US with cutting-edge technology which still leads the way today, but at a cost.

Thus began Project Paperclip, the US operation which saw von Braun and more than 700 others spirited out of Germany from under the noses of the US's allies. Its aim was simple: "To exploit German scientists for American research and to deny these intellectual resources to the Soviet Union."

Arthur Rudolph: "100% Nazi"

Events moved rapidly. President Truman authorised Paperclip in August 1945 and, on 18 November, the first Germans reached America.

There was, though, one major problem. Truman had expressly ordered that anyone found "to have been a member of the Nazi party and more than a nominal participant in its activities, or an active supporter of Nazism militarism" would be excluded.

Under this criterion even von Braun himself, the man who masterminded the Moon shots, would have been ineligible to serve the US. A member of numerous Nazi organisations, he also held rank in the SS. His initial intelligence file described him as "a security risk".
Posted by Ed  in  Lunar orbit  on  Tue Jan 13, 2009  at  11:30 AM
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