On the NASA website today, a tale in praise of the many merits of duct tape when one is on the moon with a busted buggy:
The date was Dec. 11, 1972. Astronauts Gene Cernan and Jack Schmitt had just landed their lunar module Challenger in a beautiful mountain-ringed valley named Taurus-Littrow on the edge of the Sea of Serenity. (...)Link. Image: The Apollo 17 moonbuggy fender repaired with duct tape.
Cernan: "Okay. I can't say I'm very adept at putting fenders back on. But I sure don't want to start without it. I'm just going to put a couple of pieces of good old-fashioned American gray tape on it...(and) see whether we can't make sure it stays."
In spite of his thick gloves, Cernan managed to unroll and tear off the needed pieces, but moondust foiled his first repair:
Cernan: "…good old-fashioned gray tape doesn't want to stick very well." (At a post flight briefing he explained: "Because there was dust on everything, once you got a piece of tape off the roll, the first thing the tape stuck to was dust; and then it didn't stick to anything else.")
His second attempt succeeded, however. "I am done!" crowed Cernan. "If that fender stays on ... I'd like some sort of mending award." And with that, they were off.
Boing Boing editor/partner and tech culture journalist Xeni Jardin hosts and produces Boing Boing's in-flight TV channel on Virgin America airlines (#10 on the dial), and writes about living with breast cancer. Diagnosed in 2011. @xeni on Twitter. email: firstname.lastname@example.org.