Apollo TV and MSTV.

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Apollo TV and MSTV.

Postby Steve Anderson » Wed Sep 01, 2021 9:01 pm

The early Apollo moon-missions used a unique and custom TV system, at first in monochrome, later in colour. It was a mish-mash of a system using either 320-lines at a 10Hz frame rate, or a Hi-Def mode of 1280-lines (very familiar now) at 0.625Hz, i.e. 1.6sec/frame. I don't think the HD mode was ever used on actual missions though. In either mode the video needed to be kept within a 500kHz bandwidth, that's all the Moon-Earth link had available for video.

In my mind it's not quite 'TV', nor SSTV, more like a higher resolution version of NBTV, the frame rate isn't that dissimilar. In the absence of any thing else - MDTV (Medium Definition TeleVision), though that could encompass many others.

The fundamental baseband video parameters are below, 'Click' as usual. It used a 'Sync Burst' rather than a pulse, other than the modification of line/frame frequencies , amplitudes and a few other details, it should be quite familiar. This data is only for the monochrome system, aside from the colour system, (same as early US CBS colour), using a RGB motor-driven sequential arrangement I have very little info.

We all remember (though perhaps I should say 'some' now) the quality of the results, not exactly stellar! One day I'll have a go at reproducing 320/10 for no other reason than why not? Maybe then we can see what could have been. Though that's easy to do in no time at all - convert a JPG to monochrome, resize to 428x320 (3:2 aspect ratio) and that's what could have been (without the 500kHz filtering). But that's not fair on those lumbered with the time/cost/reliability/operational constraints.

Steve A.

Also conversion from 320 to 525 had to be done on Earth, then in most of the world 525 to 625, or 405 which is how I saw it live on TV. I was 13 at the time...

Apollo B+W TV 320.gif

ApolloTV-Acrobat5.pdf
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LC-SOW.pdf
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Steve Anderson
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Re: Apollo TV and MSTV.

Postby Lowtone » Fri Sep 10, 2021 5:32 am

converted to 819 too at that time.


Here is an interesting clip of camera failure on the moon

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UtBMAMO11e8&ab_channel=MoonInGoogleEarth[/youtube]


Also this website that shows eveything, picture of the 320 line monitor, super 8 footage of it, schematics of the transmission system.
https://honeysucklecreek.net/Apollo_11/tapes/

https://honeysucklecreek.net/Apollo_11/index.html

Image

https://honeysucklecreek.net/Apollo_11_EVA_stills/images/A11TV05.jpg
r a d i o P T T v i s i o n
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Re: Apollo TV and MSTV.

Postby Steve Anderson » Fri Sep 10, 2021 11:53 am

Lowtone wrote:...and converted to 819 too at that time.

Oops, I forgot about 819, sorry...

Here's two links which are related to the Lunar Orbit craft that took hi-res photos of proposed Apollo moon landing sites and the discovery and restoration of the tapes. Unlike Apollo 11, these tapes were found...

http://www.thelivingmoon.com/47john_lea ... Found.html
https://moonviews.com/

Some of the embedded links within the sites may or may not work...they've been up for years with little or no maintenance...

Steve A.
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