More than 10,000 images taken during the Apollo missions are now online in a Flickr gallery as a part of the Project Apollo Archive. Anyone can peruse the album and explore the formative years of U.S. space exploration. The gallery includes photographs from the Apollo 7 mission through the Apollo 17 mission, including images from the first manned lunar landing and the harrowing Apollo 13 mission.
Archivist Kipp Teague and Apollo historian Eric Jones are the forces behind the Project Apollo Archive. Teague scanned the images provided by NASA and uploaded them online, making the pictures universally available. According to the Planetary Society, Teague and Jones began the project in 1999, posting edited images at 1000 DPI, which is low resolution by today's standards. In 2004, the Johnson Space Center re-scanned the original photos to improve the quality. Teague reprocessed the archive enhanced at 1,800 DPI, so what you see in the Project Apollo Archive gallery is high resolution — but untouched. (The Internet, of course, is already hard at work color-correcting some of the photos.)
Eugene Cernan during the Apollo 17 mission (Photo: Project Apollo Archive/flickr)
The photos showcase the many facets of extra-planetary exploration. From the stunning shots of moon exploration, to earthrises, to smiling astronauts hanging out, this collection shows a variety of moments from the sublime to the every day. The collection provides a slice-of-life view into what it was like to be an astronaut in the 1960s and '70s.
Teague has separated the Flickr gallery into albums. Not every shot is a spectacular space vista or Instagram-worthy astro-selfie, but each is remarkable in its own way. It's a good thing, in fact, that the astronauts didn't have a "delete" option on their cameras, or we wouldn't be privy to such an unedited collection of views and experiences.
Earth photographed during the Apollo 8 mission in 1968. (Photo: Project Apollo Archive/flickr)
The shots were taken on modified Hasselblad cameras, many of which were mounted on the astronauts' spacesuits. Some of the shots from those vantage points provide a first-hand representation of the space race.
The archive currently contains more than 11,000 photos, but Teague says he expects the archive to top 13,000. Teague also runs a Facebook group that showcases certain photographs and invites people to create and submit composite images from the Flickr archive. The Facebook group has already amassed more than 20,000 likes.
The S-IVB deployed during the Apollo 7 mission. The sliver of blue to the right is Earth. (Photo: Project Apollo Archive/flickr)
As the Internet celebrates this catalog of extraterrestrial snapshots, it's clear to see that the Project Apollo Archive has space enthusiasts over the moon.