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    CMP Lovell's handwritten log book from man's first trip to the moon.

    Apollo 8 Flown Crew Log Directly from the Personal Collection of Mission Command Module Pilot James Lovell, Certified and Signed. This 130+ page, 5.5" x 8", Crew Log book is printed on cardstock and bound with three binder rings between two heavyweight covers. Lovell has written his surname on the front cover, almost certainly contemporary to the period. Printed on the front cover is "PART NO. SKB32100040-201" and "S/N 1003". The first thirty-nine lined pages of this loose-leaf book bear the detailed and fascinating handwritten notes, readings, calculations, and drawings made by Lovell during this historic spaceflight, the first manned mission to the moon, December 21-27, 1968. These are followed by approximately seventy-seven blank, lined pages before a final section of twenty-one tabbed pages of various charts, some filled out or notated by Lovell. Tabs are: "Exercise", "Exercise/Sleep", "Water", "Menu", and "Window". Significant flown items from Apollo 8 are very desirable and this one, with so much important handwritten information is certainly of museum quality and worthy of the most advanced of collections. Very fine condition with light soiling on the front cover and modest wear from use.

    Lovell starts on page one with eleven numbered comments under the heading "G[uidance] and N[avigation] Notes", e.g. "2. Almost impossible to get a star calibration with technique used. Had to go to P23... and then use Sirius for sextant calibration... 4. First star sightings showed a very indistinct horizon. The L[andmark] L[ine] O[f] S[ight] filter appeared to help it out... 5. Moon view (thin crescent) through telescope light blue surrounding moon. Could not see night side."

    A few pages later, after some P23 readings, he writes: "Note. All stars difficult to sight due to proximity of sun. Crescent moon blended in with whitish background... Star 40 sightings were taken just at the tip of the crescent rim (almost invisible)". P23 is used for cislunar (the space between the Earth and the moon) navigation; it was one of Lovell's jobs to take these readings during the trip to and from the moon. He got quite adept at it with his vector readings essentially as accurate as those from Mission Control.

    At 61:14 of elapsed mission time, Lovell writes "P21 distance measurement 20,500 mi from moon". P21 was a calculation of the pericynthion. According to the official flight transcript, he radioed that information to Houston two minutes later, quoting Lovell: "We're at a gain of about 20,500 miles from the moon at 61:14. How does that agree with what you figure?" This was about six hours after the crew became the first humans to enter the gravitational influence of another celestial body.

    After quite a few pages of mostly technical information, Lovell remarks: "Moon washes out stars around it. Before moon came into view in SCT [scanning telescope], many stars could be seen (black background). Example the guard stars in Apollo were visible..." An excellent comment mentioning the namesake star constellation. More data and comments follow.

    Lovell has certified on the inside front cover: "On board Apollo 8, First/ flight to the Moon-/ James Lovell".

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    Auction Dates
    October, 2009
    8th Thursday
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