1. Santa's sidekick

    Santa's sidekick Active Member

    Update: This was explained many years ago, and was simply interference between the Lunar Module's and command module's VHF radios creating a strange whistling sound.

    To briefly summarize the article: it seems that astronauts aboard Apollo 10 heard strange theremin-style noises which they were recorded referring to as 'Outer-space-type music' while blocked from Earth's radio transmissions by the Moon. The writer heavily implies that extraterrestrial radio transmissions are the best explanation.


    The Huffington Post is not above insinuating that extraterrestrial radio transmissions are the likeliest explanation.... But what do members here make of this? What could the noises have been?
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 21, 2016
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  2. M Bornong

    M Bornong Senior Member


    Does anybody have a copy of the book to confirm this?
  3. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    Here's the full transcript from NASA, with a bit of surrounding context. This

    Last edited: Feb 21, 2016
  4. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    That debunking comes from 2009:
    (notes that it's on page 420)

    The book itself is from 1974
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  5. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    Note that Astonaut Young suggests a source of the "music" as the VHF ranging. The VHF radios were dual use: for voice, and for measuring distance (ranging) - between the Command Module and the Lunar Module.

    Nasa's technical note on the ranging system attached

    At 7:42 in the attached audio.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Feb 21, 2016
  6. Henk001

    Henk001 Active Member

    So the apollo 11 crew knew what to expect and actually heard about the same noise. The radio technicians had an explanation for it. Now in the Huffington post apollo 15 astronaut Al Worden, when asked about this, seems to have been unaware of it:
    I wonder why the apollo 15 crew apparently did not know of this sound and its explanation. Had the technicians fixed it in the mean time?
  7. Henk001

    Henk001 Active Member

    So perhaps it WAS Pink Floyd?;)
  8. Mick West

    Mick West Administrator Staff Member

    If it was due to the ranging system (a dual use for the voice radio to measure distance), perhaps they used a different ranging system later.
  9. Dan Page

    Dan Page Active Member

    Perhaps they found a way to mute the sound when doing the ranging, like a squelch.
  10. M Bornong

    M Bornong Senior Member

    I found a copy of Michael Collins' book at the library. In this edition the quote is on page 413.

    Scan8001. Scan8002. Scan8003.

    The corresponding conversation can be found on Day 5 page 171 of the Apollo 11 transcripts.

    Untitled2. http://www.jsc.nasa.gov/history/mission_trans/apollo11.htm

    NASA released a statement a few hours, ago.

    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 22, 2016
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  11. It's almost as if someone was trying to whip up interest in a TV programme or something by using internet forums as free viral marketing...
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  12. skephu

    skephu Senior Member

    Here's the Science Channel program about this:

    It says Al Worden doesn't agree with the radio theory.
  13. Where does he say he doesn't agree with with the radio theory? The only specific mention he makes of radio is being out of radio contact with Earth. The rest of it is disjointed edits of responses to questions we haven't heard.

    The noise is caused by interference in the communications between the LM & CSM, and while Al Worden may not have heard of the explanation everyone else involved is happy that it was the VHF ranging system that was being employed.
  14. skephu

    skephu Senior Member

    The narrator says so in Part 2 at 1:52.
  15. deirdre

    deirdre Moderator Staff Member

    Science channel. typical hype for ratings it sounds like to me. The narrator with his oh so deep, 'alarming' voice. :)

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  16. M Bornong

    M Bornong Senior Member

    I'd like to know if the producers or writers of the show even attempted to speak, to Cernan, Stafford, or Young?
  17. Spectrar Ghost

    Spectrar Ghost Senior Member

    I doubt it. It's easier to edit for alternate theories with secondhand accounts. Firsthand witnesses can say "it was this". Others are more likely to give a range of explanations.

    I've come to hate Discovery Networks.
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