Spectacular 360-degree 3-D panorama from Apollo 16

November 6, 2012 by Nancy Atkinson, Universe Today

Dealing with those who think the Apollo Moon landings never happened can be frustrating. Most of us just throw up our hands in exasperation, but Italian amateur astronomer Roberto Beltramini came up with a better idea: create a full 360-degree 3-D panorama of images from Apollo 16 to show "the true depth of the views taken by astronauts Apollo," he said. "What better proof? This was the motivation that prompted me to start, but the spectacle and the interest in new ways of seeing the [Moon's] wilderness, made me go farther."

This panorama has now been put into a "Zoomify" making it fully interactive and lots of fun to explore. Grab your 3-D glasses, and you can find a rock and zoom in, follow the astronauts' footprints and see one of the astronauts tinkering with the . Click here and enjoy!

Beltramini's initial plan was to create just a few 3-D anaglyghs, but once he got started, he just kept going. But of course, the Apollo 16 images taken by astronauts John Young and Charlie Duke as they walked, bounded and drove the lunar rover on the Moon's surface were not originally taken with the intent to be made into 3-D view, making Beltramini's job fairly difficult.

"The difficulty of making anaglyph, due to the shots not performed specifically for the purpose, may have dampened the attempts of other enthusiasts," he writes on the website for amateur astronomy group in Viareggio, in the Tuscany region of Italy (Gruppo Astronomico Viareggio.) "To overcome this obstacle, I had to work adapting the pairs of pictures with graphics programs, cropping, resizing, by cleaning scratches and stains present because of the scans on the original story. Other marks are very annoying problem, that is, the black crosses placed at regular intervals in photographs taken during the Apollo missions that I had to delete one by one to avoid that interfere with 3D viewing."

But over time he figured out how to make it work, "thanks to the phenomenon of rotation around a nodal point during the panning of the is possible, if there is plenty of overlap of the images, create a 3D 360 degree panorama," he told Universe Today.

was the fourth mission to land on the moon and launched on July 26, 1971, and the returned to Earth on August 7.

Explore further: Happy 40th anniversary, Apollo 15!

Related Stories

Happy 40th anniversary, Apollo 15!

July 27, 2011

This month is the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 15 launch. This mission was the eighth manned mission in the Apollo program and the fourth to the Moon. The Apollo 15 mission is important because it was another step in manned ...

Image: Orion seen from the Rover

November 9, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- The Apollo 16 Lunar Module "Orion" is photographed from a distance by astronaut Chares M. Duke Jr., Lunar Module pilot, aboard the moving Lunar Roving Vehicle.

Image: Apollo 16: Footsteps Under High Sun

July 8, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- The lunar module Orion landed in the Descartes Highlands of the moon on April 21, 1972. The Apollo 16 mission targeted a highland region. Originally thought to be a volcanic site, the samples returned by ...

The thirty-ninth anniversary of the last moonwalk

December 14, 2011

On December 13, 1972, Apollo 17 Commander Eugene A. Cernan and Lunar Module Pilot (LMP) Harrison H. “Jack” Schmitt made the final lunar EVA or moonwalk of the final Apollo mission. Theirs was the longest stay on ...

Recommended for you

Image: Wavemaker moon Daphnis

January 20, 2017

The wavemaker moon, Daphnis, is featured in this view, taken as NASA's Cassini spacecraft made one of its ring-grazing passes over the outer edges of Saturn's rings on Jan. 16, 2017. This is the closest view of the small ...

Astronomers search for signs of life on Wolf 1061 exoplanet

January 19, 2017

Is there anybody out there? The question of whether Earthlings are alone in the universe has puzzled everyone from biologists and physicists to philosophers and filmmakers. It's also the driving force behind San Francisco ...


Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Adam Brinckerhoff
4.2 / 5 (5) Nov 06, 2012
Wow, what a great idea for proving naysayers wrong. Thanks for sharing!

Personally, I think the best way to prove our lunar point is to go back. When we go, what do you think is the ultimate proof that we could send back to the Earth?

Adam Brinckerhoff
Development Engineer
1.9 / 5 (9) Nov 06, 2012
What millions of Conservative bloggers know is that NASA killed Kennedy to prevent him from spilling the beans on their fake Apollo moon landing program.


4.3 / 5 (6) Nov 06, 2012
you are joking, right Vendicar?
If NASA was in the business of killing presidents, don't you think they'd be better funded?
3 / 5 (2) Nov 06, 2012
"you are joking, right Vendicar?" - Royale

Who? Me?
1 / 5 (1) Nov 06, 2012
FYI. (was this purposeful as well? haha.)

Accessing web site: batesmotel.8m.com is prohibited at this time
URL: batesmotel.8m.com/

This URL, batesmotel.8m.com, is a known malware domain location
not rated yet Nov 06, 2012
And this convinces any naysayer? Hardly.

@Royale: "This URL, batesmotel.8m.com, is a known malware domain location" Hmm. Part of the joke, no? Couldn't be, right?
2 / 5 (4) Nov 06, 2012
The illuminati are preventing you from accessing that site.

They don't want you to know what they are doing.

Conservative Christian Patriots know the truth...



2.3 / 5 (9) Nov 06, 2012
Wow, what a great idea for proving naysayers wrong. Thanks for sharing!

Personally, I think the best way to prove our lunar point is to go back. When we go, what do you think is the ultimate proof that we could send back to the Earth?

Adam Brinckerhoff
Development Engineer

It is a great idea, but trying to convince the naysayers is a waste of energy. It's not as if you are trying to emulate the AGW warristas and ram new taxation down their (the naysayers) throats.
2.3 / 5 (8) Nov 06, 2012
America will never go back to the moon in any capacity. America is bankrupt and will not exist as a nation for much longer.
1 / 5 (3) Nov 07, 2012
How does photoshopping a bunch of images prove we went to the moon?
Lex Talonis
2.6 / 5 (5) Nov 07, 2012
"Dealing with those who think the Apollo Moon landings never happened can be frustrating."

How exactly do you mean "dealing with them"?

It's a known fact that the whole Apollo program was a fake.

I was even personally there on the moon to observe that fact they they never went.

It's totally fake I tell you.
1 / 5 (2) Nov 07, 2012
How then, do you explain the nuclear base on the dark side of the moon that the conquistadors setup?
3 / 5 (2) Nov 07, 2012
It is a nuclear rocket base on the dark side, and the conquistadors used mutant, bigfoot, corn cob technology to get there.

Lex is right. He would have seen the LEM land if it was really there.

Here is a documentary on the subject.

3.7 / 5 (3) Nov 07, 2012
I'm an electronics engineer who worked on the L.E.M (Lunar Excursion Module) at Grumman Aerospace in the late 1960's. Could someone tell me what caused the conspiracy theory about fake moon landings in the first place. I don't understand the justification for it. Thanks.

Bob Bloom
3.7 / 5 (3) Nov 08, 2012
Hey Bob.. I suspect it was people watching 'Capricorn One', then just putting Moon instead of Mars in their head.. then coming up with silly reasons, which can all be easily explained but sound great to people that half-know Science..
3.7 / 5 (3) Nov 08, 2012
Thank you(Royale)for your feedback. Some time ago someone had mentioned that the technology to do a moon shot was not available then. Is that still one of the complaints today? The technology was primitive compared to today, but sufficient to do the job.

Bob Bloom
4 / 5 (4) Nov 10, 2012
The best way to convince nay sayers is to get them a high school education. If that doesn't convince them they've joined the service class and it doesn't matter what they think. Terrible shame they can vote when you think about it.
3 / 5 (4) Nov 10, 2012
I'm curious, do you think that in general the educational level of the average adult falls far short of even a basic understanding of how the world works? I'm not sure what I mean by average since there are many scales of measurement. But, think of it in a very general way.
1 / 5 (1) Nov 11, 2012
but where do you get the damn glasses?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.