Fig. 1 -A composition of photographs by Jack White
showing the Apollo 17 lunar module and lunar rover with the
South Massif mountain in the background. The inset is of
Gene Cernan with the same mountain and earth in the
background. NASA AS17-147-22527, inset NASA
In the larger photograph
in Fig. 1 no image of the earth appears. But the inset, which shows
the same mountain, includes an image of the earth. A portion of the
foreground occurs in the inset, allowing us to precisely superimpose
these images. The earth should appear in the larger photo, but it
does not, proving that they were not taken on the moon. The image of
the earth in the inset was obviously added optically later. [Jack
Mr. White has cropped away part of the inset image. The full
frame of the inset image appears in Fig. 2. Note in the lower left
corner, behind Cernan's PLSS, another section of the South Massif's
Fig. 2 -The full frame of the image appearing inset
in Fig. 1 (NASA AS17-134-20387.)
Because the west slope of the South Massif (at the right in
Figs. 1 and 2) is a fairly straight line, and the foreground
demarcation is similarly linear, Mr. White's contention that a perfect
match can be made with his cropped version of the inset is incorrect.
In fact, if the inset is made larger or smaller, it can actually "fit"
several places in the larger image. Mr. White has made no attempt to
normalize the scale of the two photographs.
Fortunately with the full image we have another point of
correlation which can help us find the correct relative scale. If the
full frame of the inset is placed where Mr. White has placed it, the
portion of the ridge line at the lower left does not lie anywhere
close to the ridge line in the larger photo. This is conclusive
evidence that Mr. White's superimposition is not correct.
Fig. 3 - A more proper superimposition of the two
photographs in Fig. 1. (A) the portion of the ridge line lying
behind Cernan's PLSS. (B) portions of the terrain which can provide
both location and slope, to help correlate both registration and
rotation. (C) a prominent feature on the South Massif which is
discernible in both photos and provides a sure point of
registration. (NASA AS17-147-22527, AS17-134-20387.)
Fig. 3 shows a more defensible superimposition. We are able to
identify certain prominent features in the South Massif and use them
as registration aids. Further, we make use of the entire inset
frame. The combination of the correlations identified in the caption
strongly suggests that this is a more accurate registration of these
photos. All visible elements of the ridgeline and the foreground
demarcation line up. Since features (A) and both features (B) form a
triangle, it is impossible for there to be more than one such
correlation. Further, both features (B) and feature (C) -- which by
itself provides both collocation and slope -- form a second triangle
that establishes a single registrational solution. There is a high
degree of confidence in this superimposition.
The portion of the rotated photograph (AS17-134-20387) that
contains the image of the earth is now outside the frame of the photo
containing the LM and LRV, confirming that the earth image should
not appear in that photograph, and that this does not
constitute a point of inconsistency between them.
Mr. White has had similar problems
normalizing the scale of Apollo photographs he compares directly.