Bad Astronomy

Lunar Eavesdropping

I recently received an email from Chris Graney, an astronomer I went to grad school with. During a conversation with a reporter, Chris found out about a remarkable story: in 1969, a radio technician was able to use home-built equipment to listen in on the Apollo 11 transmissions to Earth!

It was a remarkable effort. He had to build the equipment and guide it by hand to track the Moon (if the Moon drifted out of the equipment’s field of view he lost the transmission… need I say it? More proof we went to the Moon). The story got some coverage, but apparently faded away over the years. I certainly never heard of it. Chris is wondering if anyone else was able to do this, too. If you’ve heard anything like this, leave a comment!