Posts Tagged ‘DAC’

Will try to write more and sidestep the depression a bit, but until then… this quickie post will have to do. It presents WATT friend and reader (!) LunaCognita’s latest film, an unprecedented proper look at the footage of the lift off of the Lunar Module from the end of the Apollo 11 mission. He pretty much explains what’s what with it below, but, do note that near to and again at the end of this clip there are two unidentified objects seen landing

and they both land…

in the very same spot!

WAAAH!

LunaCognita | December 31, 2010

This presentation shows the 16mm Data Acquisition Camera (DAC) footage that was shot during the Apollo 11 ascent from Tranquility Base. In this ascent footage, the DAC motion picture camera was mounted in the right side forward-facing (LMP) window of the Apollo 11 Lunar Module “Eagle”, providing us a view looking down at the Moon’s surface as the LM ascent stage fires and sends the spacecraft on its way back up to lunar orbit for rendezvous and docking with the CSM “Columbia”.

Rather than just showing the raw footage here as it is cataloged in the NASA film archives, I instead show the footage in a rotation-corrected format in order to always keep the scene in it’s proper “horizon up” viewing orientation throughout the duration of the clip. This proper “horizon up” perspective can be established based on some simple visual criteria, with the goal being to ensure we are viewing the footage with the lunar surface being shown so that the Moon’s horizon that is closest to the camera’s current principle point always remains aligned and level towards the top of the field-of-view (even if the horizon itself is not actually visible at the time). This ensures that the surface scene you are viewing can be accurately interpreted.

As you can see in this footage, the rotation correction to align the scene to the “horizon up” viewing perspective is an absolutely vital adjustment that must be applied first in order to be able to even begin attempting to analyze and interpret scenes such as this one accurately. Because the DAC camera was hard-mounted in the window of the LM during liftoff from the lunar surface, this meant that the standard locked display perspective that NASA provides in their archive clips showing the Apollo ascent footage is ALWAYS displaying the lunar surface scene below in an inaccurate perspective. For over 40 years, the public has actually been watching ascent footage like this from the various Apollo missions where the lunar surface after liftoff is being shown essentially upside down (between 135 to 180 degrees off of the “horizon up” viewing perspective).

The point to this simple presentation is to merely serve as a reminder to everyone who is interested in doing their own analysis of ANY of the Apollo DAC footage or still frames of the lunar surface to always consider the question of “what is the proper viewing perspective for each scene?” The ugly fact is that the vast majority of the Apollo DAC footage and still frames, as they are archived by NASA, are not presenting their lunar surface scenes to you in anything close to the proper “horizon up” viewing orientation that our eyes expect to see. Obviously, unless this improper viewing perspective is corrected for first, you have very little chance of being able to analyze the scenes you are looking at with any degree of accuracy at all.

In addition to the rotation-correction, I also was forced to make several frame-rate adjustments to this Apollo 11 DAC footage, and the reason for that is because just before the four-minute mark after liftoff, the 16mm DAC camera suddenly alters it frame exposure rate, switching from 12 frames-per-second (the proper declared setting for filming the liftoff and ascent) down to 6 fps. I have no idea how or why this sudden frame-rate setting change occurs, because adjusting the DAC camera’s fps setting “on the fly” was certainly not one of LMP Buzz Aldrin’s checklisted duties during ascent, and I see no mention in the Apollo 11 mission and post-mission reports to account for this anomalous occurrence. The Apollo 11 ascent footage, as it is archived by NASA, makes no attempt to correct for (or even draw attention to) this sudden step-down in frame-rate, which results in the raw archive footage appearing to suddenly show a doubling of the playback speed. In addition to this, NASA typically renders their HD digital DAC archive at 29.97 NSTC, resulting in further interpolation stretching being introduced in the digital footage. I have attempted to correct for this effect here in order to ensure that the playback rate of the DAC footage accurately matches the accurate timeframe that I was able to establish using the accompanying raw mission audio track and flown liftoff&ascent charts – essentially using the accurate audio timeline to re-synchronize the inaccurate video playback rate so they match up correctly for the duration of the nearly 10-minute complete sequence of footage showing the Apollo 11 ascent from Tranquility Base.
http://magic-ufo.forum-phpbb.in/t871-…
Cheers everyone,
LC

If you’d like to check it out, there is a nice discussion of this work going on over at ATS. Short so far and very well reasoned.

Ah, great, here’s the new vid from LunaCognita that looks into more of the footage shot during the Apollo missions. I posted a bit about the trailer for it a little while ago on this blog.

Actually, I’m holding out hope that this is only a part of a bigger picture… there’s some cool anomaly shots in it to be sure… including a truly inexplicable boomerang shaped thing… you’ll see… but my thirst for more and more weirdness is strong; and the second half presents a visual representation of the results of frame stacking, as explained more below.

Frame stacking is an old technique that can produce some seriously spectacular results unachievable by any other method… it is very commonly used by the astronomical community and professional photographers and photographic printers alike in a process called HDR, or High Dynamic Range photography. That’s printers as in people, not machines, by the way.

A very handy link was found at NASA’s History site in a section on Apollo 12’s approach and landing by Easynow over at ATS… it goes into some detail, with pics, about the DAC camera and its mountings, view angles and other good stuff… please do check it out, it’s pretty cool.

NASA’s Apollo Coverup – A Forensic Look At The 16mm DAC Film Footage

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LunaCognita
March 16, 2010

In this presentation, we will focus on taking a closer look at several interesting segments of film footage from the NASA archives. All the footage shown and analyzed here was originally shot by NASA astronauts during the Apollo missions (1968-1972) on 16mm film, using what was known as the “Data Acquisition Camera” – the “DAC”.

The Maurer “DAC” cameras were modified variable frame rate 16mm motion picture film cameras used by the various Apollo crews throughout their missions to film scenes of interest through the windows of the spacecraft, interior spacecraft activities, as well as to shoot exterior footage during lunar surface “moonwalk” operations and Low-Earth Orbit or Trans-Earth-Coast EVA ops in cis-lunar space.

I included a bit more information on the Apollo DAC camera in the brief writeup I did attached to the earlier teaser/trailer video for this presentation – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uo81LM…

FRAME-STACKING
In the last half of this presentation (starting at 4:30), I show various examples where I employ an enhancement technique known as “frame-stacking” against the raw DAC archive footage. In certain cases, frame-stacking can be employed to forensically attack the raw frames of film and produce an enhanced composite still-frame of a stable (or motion-stabilized) scene. It should be noted that “stacking” is by no means a new method of enhancing video or motion picture film footage. It is a digital enhancement technique that has been around a lot longer than most people would probably believe, and in many cases it can provide us an improved look at some of the deeper image detail that is actually buried beneath the random “noise” in the raw footage.

Frame-stacking exploits the fact that the DAC footage, like any motion picture camera or digital video footage, is comprised of many sequential still images shown in rapid succession to simulate the appearance of motion to the viewer’s eye. If the raw footage is providing us with a stable (or motion-stabilized) scene that has no or little movement in the field-of-view, it might appear that the scene is comprised of many individual photographs that all seem to capture the identical view. However, appearances can be deceiving, and the truth is that each of those individual frames making up the raw film footage have slight variances between them, with each one suffering from its own unique random noise artifacts. “Stacking” works by analyzing and comparing all the raw frames that make up a segment of footage, allowing for the detection and subtraction of random noise artifacting from each individual raw frame. Those individual cleaned frames are then stacked together in order to construct a high-resolution composite image of the captured scene.

The first two examples I show in the frame-stacking segment were included merely to demonstrate the effectiveness of this enhancement technique when employed against raw archive footage of a known object – in this case, an Apollo Lunar Module. The first example is film footage from Apollo 9 taken in low-Earth orbit with an automatic 16mm DAC camera mounted to the open hatch of the CSM aiming “up” towards the Lunar Module (which was docked to the nose of the CSM at the time). Astronaut Rusty Schweickhart (LMP) can be seen standing on the porch of the LM, where he was conducting an EVA to test and verify the performance of the Apollo A7-L spacesuit and PLSS life support pack. A magnified split-screen closeup of the LM’s Rendevzous Radar Antenna allows for a direct comparative analysis of the raw footage versus the “stacked” enhancement as an example to demonstrate the improvements in clarity that can be gained.

The second demonstration example is not actually DAC footage, but rather is television footage from the Apollo 15 mission showing the LM “Falcon” sitting on the lunar surface, taken with the tripod-mounted GCTA-TV camera. I chose this example of raw GCTA-TV footage because it clearly suffers from rather severe noise issues, providing another good demonstration of the enhancement potential that frame-stacking can offer. As you can plainly see in both the DAC and GCTA-TV examples showing the LM, the stack enhancements offer considerable improvement in image clarity, allowing us to extract detail that in some cases may appear to not even be detectable when viewing the raw footage.

This presentation here is just the first part of a multi-part series focusing on the truth (and the lies) in the Apollo DAC footage. Hope you enjoy, and stay tuned for more to come!

Cheers,
LunaCognita

Keep them coming, LC, we be diggin’ it…

Madonne! Oh, man, is this good, folks… wicked good, even. Yes, dear readers, once again LunaCognita has managed to knock my socks right off with this video. Needless to say, I can hardly wait for the full version… because there are objects filmed here that I’ve not seen before, and they are spectacular. Where in the heck does LC find this stuff?

I imagine they’ve been ordered from the NASA archives, but how does one know which ones to buy? Connections within the Pegasus Research crew certainly help in that regard, but still… Oh, and, we mustn’t forget that most of the film that was shot hasn’t been released, still, as far as I am aware… oh how we’d all love to see those.

There is so much material at NASA that is classified… one wonders, if there’s nothing of interest up there besides a bunch of cool minerals… then why is there a need for assigning classified status to images, film and research documents at all? Hmmm?

This film can give some insight into that conundrum.

Amusing it is how the trolls and troglodytes commenting at YouTube call this ice and junk falling off the command and LEM modules. Too funny. Junk? Right, we build such fragile craft… Ice? Umm, this is the Moon, dude… Jeez!

Enjoy the mystery…

Hi everyone,
This brief presentation you will see here is just a bit of a teaser/trailer, showing a short segment from a larger video project I am currently in the process of working on. While the full presentation is still awhile away from being complete, I have received more than a few emails asking me about when my next video was going to come out, so I thought that in the interim, I would release this short segment just as a teaser to show a taste of some of the interesting visuals I plan to include in upcoming presentations where I will provide my own analysis of some of the Apollo-era films. All of the footage you will see here was captured on film during the Apollo missions to the Moon, shot by NASA astronauts. Originally exposed on 16mm film, this footage was taken using what was known as the “DAC” – the “Data Acquisition Camera”.Hope you enjoy,
Cheers!
LunaCognita

THE “DAC”
The Maurer “DAC” cameras used to shoot this footage were modified variable frame rate 16mm motion picture film cameras that were used by the various Apollo crews throughout their missions to the Moon to film scenes of interest through the windows of the spacecraft, as well as to shoot exterior footage during lunar surface “moonwalk” operations and Trans-Earth-Coast EVA ops in cis-lunar space during that return-to-Earth phase of the missions.

When it was being used in “automatic” mode, the DAC camera could be set by the astronaut to expose the film within it’s magazine at one of three set frame-rates – 1, 6 or 12 frames-per-second. In the 1 fps mode, the DAC also could be (and occasionally was) used as a still picture camera to shoot single frames of film.

When placed in “semi-automatic” mode, the DAC camera also offered a 24 fps filming capability, although that mode was used somewhat sparingly during the Apollo program as it only allowed for a maximum 3.7 minutes of run time before a film magazine change was required. More typically, one of the three different “auto” modes were used in order to take advantage of the frame-rate control capability to optimize film usage. These slower frame rate settings of course means that when filming in one of those modes, the DAC was functioning more as a sequential still camera rather than a true 24fps motion picture camera (I realize all motion picture film cameras are essentially stop-motion sequential still cameras, so I am referring to the frame-rate playback issues here). The DAC camera could be used as a hand-held movie camera or it could be hard-mounted to various points inside or outside the spacecraft (or to the LRV or the MET during lunar surface ops) in order to provide a stable platform and hands-free filming capability.

LunaCognita
January 20, 2010

YouTube commenter VideoGearHead said… (I thought this was nice…)

1:38 WTF?!!
1:48 busted-up glass dome?
2:21 fractured moon?
Wowa!

5 million stars!

One more thing…and this frosts my jaw the most…I watched the missions to the moon. I remember when I was in the Boy Scouts spending two bucks to have my name put on the Voyager craft. I remember waiting in anticipation to see really cool pictures of our own solar system – Saturn etc. – and remembering them not being what I expected and having to wait YEARS to see them.

Thank YOU for your vision!