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Supposed Moon camera up for auction

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An Austrian auction house has announced that it is going to put on the block a camera that supposedly went to the Moon. According to the WestLicht Gallery, they have a camera flown to the Moon on Apollo 15 and used by astronaut James Irwin, a Hasselblad 70mm Electric Data Camera (EDC).

So, are the claims true?

According to the Gallery, the proof comes in the form of a serial number, “38,” which, according to the Gallery, proves that this camera, beyond any shadow of a doubt, went to the moon. Why the confidence? The same serial number appears on the 299 photos taken by Irwin on the Moon.

Unfortunately, according to the Gallery, other claims made in auction literature are untrue.

According to the Gallery, this is the only camera to return from the Moon. Bad news: this isn't true. Alan Shepard, the commander of Apollo 14, returned his camera to Earth per instruction of mission control. The same, at least as suggested by transcripts of mission radio communications, is true of Apollo 17 commander Eugene Cernan. The same is true for this supposed Moon camera, hich Irwin was instructed to bring back to Earth for examination aftera malfunction on the Moon. Additionally, NASA sued former astronaut Edgar Mitchell to stop a sale of what Mitchell claimed was his lunar camera, also from Apollo 14.

Nevertheless, the camera, according to the Gallery, is expected to sell for anywhere between $200,000 and $270,000 at auction.

Want to put in a bid? The camera will hit the auction block on March 22.

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