Apollo 11: 50th anniversary trip to Parkes

To be human means to take on challenges. And one of the biggest challenges of the 20th century was to land a man on the moon.

The Parkes Radio Telescope played an important role in those Apollo moon missions. Receivers at Honeysuckle Creek, Parkes and Goldstone all received the video signal of the moonwalk, and the best signal was chosen for the live international television broadcast. The beginning of the broadcast mostly came from Honeysuckle Creek (in particular, the momement of Armstrong stepping onto the moon) with parts from Goldstone. But the video signal from Parkes was used for the rest of the broadcast (from 8 minutes 57 seconds into the broadcast, to the end of the 2.5 hour moowalk).

Fifty years on, I visited Parkes and some other moon landing related places in Australia. That also included the filming locations for the movie The Dish, a comedy set in Parkes during the time of the moon landing!

Parkes was one of three tracking stations around the world. Zoom the map out to see the other two locations: Goldstone in California, USA, and near Madrid in Spain. Remember, the world is round like a basketball!

Apollo 11: 50th anniversary
Anniversary celebrations at the Parkes Radio Telescope.
Inside the Parkes Radio Telescope
Tour the inside of the Parkes Radio Telescope.
Honeysuckle Creek Tracking Station
Where the video of the first steps on the moon was first received.
The Canberra Deep Space Communications Centre
National Museum of Australia
Satellite tracking system console
The Dish: filming locations
Filming locations for The Dish.
The Dish: control console prop
A prop from The Dish.

See also

Science and technology photos
Other museums and places related to science and technology.
Travel photos
Other places from around the world.