Under Pad 39A and 39B at Kennedy Space Center NASA built a complex of tunnels and bunkers for in case the Saturn V rocket that would bring Apollo astronauts to the moon exploded. Obviously the rooms were never used. They are rarely seen. This is an awesome gallery of photos taken from inside the rubber room.
Astronaut Life Insurance
How did the Apollo astronauts get life insurance? Well, they didn’t. So they made their own according to Collectors Weekly:
The so-called “insurance” postal covers from Apollo 11 are a safe way of acquiring the crew’s autographs. As Buzz Aldrin has explained, “Since we were unable to obtain adequate life insurance due to the high risk nature of being an astronaut, we signed this group of covers and evenly distributed them to our families for safe keeping while we performed our mission. If an unfortunate event prevented our safe return, the covers would have provided a limited financial means of support to our families.”
This is really a clever approach if you think about it.
Most Apollo Flags Still Standing
From the BBC:
Images taken by a NASA spacecraft show that the American flags planted in the Moon’s soil by Apollo astronauts are mostly still standing.
The photos from Lunar Reconaissance Orbiter (LRO) show the flags are still casting shadows – except the one planted during the Apollo 11 mission.
This matches Buzz Aldrin’s account of the flag being knocked over by engine exhaust as Apollo 11 lifted off.
Pretty amazing to think they survived this long. It also shows how little we know about the harsh space environment. Virtually nobody thought there was a chance of finding them intact.