Hawes Mechanical Television Archive by James T. Hawes, AA9DT
Moon Camera FAQ (Part 4)


QUESTION. Is Col-R-Tel the name for a slow-motion camera?


Anyway, Col-R-Tel isn't a camera. The original Col-R-Tel is a receiver circuit and mechanics. Original Col-R-Tel has no slow-motion capability. My page refers to this type receiver as "terrestrial Col-R-Tel."

My page also refers to "lunar Col-R-Tel." Lunar Col-R-Tel is the Apollo color wheel camera and the earth downlink station. This station converts the lunar signal to transmissions that your home TV can receive.

QUESTION. Are illusion generators a type of slow-motion camera?

ANSWER. No. Slow-motion cameras are a type of illusion generator. In fact, all televisions are a type of illusion generator. Any technology that extends our senses is an illusion generator. That includes YouTube and the entire Internet. Also, any technology that represents the world symbolically is an illusion generator. So you see, the term "illusion generator" doesn't imply a conspiracy. Instead, illusion generators are real-world portals to the virtual world. Since we couldn't all go to the moon, we used television to share the moon experience.

QUESTION. Did you invent Col-R-Tel? Did you invent the illusion generator? Did you use them in the Apollo program?

ANSWER. Whoa, there! No to all questions. I'm way too young to have participated in Col-R-Tel development or moon landings.

Actually, the question about illusion generators doesn't really make sense. No living person can honestly claim to have invented illusion generators. For example, illusion generators include the alphabet and cave paintings. The idea of an illusion generator is a very old idea. This idea might be as old as symbol use, or as old as the human mind. Also, we keep inventing new illusion generators. For instance, take YouTube, Google and GPS. When I talk about illusion generators, I'm not talking about just one technology. I'm talking about any technology that opens a portal between the virtual world and the real world.

QUESTION. Did the NASA camera shoot in slow motion?


QUESTION. Did the NASA downlink slow down the Apollo moon motion?

ANSWER. No. The downlink (earth station) used a magnetic disc recorder. The other use for this recorder is in video sports coverage. The recorder can play back at various speeds. For the Apollo mission, the recorder played back at normal speed. NASA used the disc machine to convert between video standards. The moon cameras could not send video that your home TV can reproduce. The disc converted the video so that you could watch at home.

QUESTION. Did NASA use film or videotape on the moon?

ANSWER. If you're talking about the television broadcasts, the answer is: No. Neither film nor videotape.

Apollo missions carried film cameras. Still, the Apollo video feed came from a TV camera, not film. During the missions, we watched this video strictly from TV cameras. The films were a different matter. We didn't see them until after the splashdown on earth. Remember that films need processing. The astronauts had to bring the films back to earth for development.

By the way, Apollo TV cameras weren't camcorders. At the time, TV cameras had no recording capability. In fact, the Apollo moon TV camera has no ability for long-term storage. The Apollo camera tube can store a video field for a few thousandths of a second. That's all. Also, that brief time is typical for many types of camera tubes. The video feed from the moon was live. Recording also took place at NASA's downlink station on earth. The special recording and playback process corrected for Doppler shift that would otherwise wreck the picture synchronization. The downlink also encoded the video for color reproduction on normal TV receivers. The time lapse between the transmission from the moon and reproduction in homes was very short.

Now, I have a question for you: Which is more likely...

  • That all the TV stations, newspapers and magazines in the world deceived the world?

  • That one guy on YouTube, 35 years after the fact, concocted a fake video?

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     Key of knowledge unlocks doors. Likewise, sync unlocks TV imagery.

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