Versatile movie and still camera as flown on all the manned moonlanding missions, serial no. 0001Apollo Moon Missions: Prototype of the J. A. Maurer 16mm Data Acquisition Camera with Archive of Related Photos. An early prototype of the legendary "DAC" as carried on Gemini and both the Lunar Module and Command Module of all the Apollo lunar missions. All of the movie footage we have of the lunar missions and many of the stills (including the ones of Neil Armstrong on the moon) were made with a Maurer 16mm of which this is a prototype. This is the type of camera that was mounted at the window next to the Lunar Module Pilot on the lunar landings. During Apollo 11, the Maurer DAC recorded the descent to the lunar surface for landing, Armstrong's descent down the ladder, and eighty-six minutes of the lunar EVA (see YouTube videos below). These 16mm color cameras used film magazines that held about 130 feet of color film which, at the standard 24 fps would have only provided three+ minutes. Because they allowed frame rates as low as 1 fps which is what was used for the moonwalk footage, the time could be extended tremendously. After Apollo 11, the DACs were taken outside of the LM: on Apollo 12 one was mounted on the Lunar Hand Tool Carrier; Apollo 14 had one mounted on the Modularized Equipment Transport cart; on Apollos 15-17, they were mounted on the Lunar Rover. Another of these was also always mounted in the Command Module to take movies of docking procedures, etc.
This rare, sturdily-constructed camera measures 7.75" x 4.75" x 2.25" overall and weighs 2 lbs. 6 oz. The information engraved on the front next to the shutter release reads: "Model No/ 296-200-000/ Serial No./ 0001" with a "Maurer 16mm" logo above the lens. On the removable lens barrel is engraved: "P. Angénieux Paris F. 10 1:1.8 Retrofocus R21 No. 1136321/ Lens Made in France" and there are aperture settings from f1.8 to f16. Two four pin electrical connectors are found on the bottom with a Mode selection switch on top with five positions: "Time Exp", "Single", "Test", "1 FPS", and "6 FPS". An unmarked four-position switch at top right is likely for shutter speed selection. Metal "J. A. Maurer, Inc." plates are attached to each side and there is a mounting bracket on the left. The film magazine is removable by means of a latch on the back. An absolutely indispensable piece of equipment for the Gemini and Apollo astronauts. This one is certainly unique being from the company's archives. A great opportunity for the Space Photography enthusiast. Fine with normal signs of use and testing.
Early models of these Maurer 16mm cameras, as well as 70mm cameras they manufactured, flew on the Gemini missions. Included with this lot are twenty+ 8" x 10" original NASA color photos, all with the desirable "red numbers," that were taken with Maurer cameras. All excellent. Also with it are additional photos and archival items from the Maurer company files.
Also included with this lot is a 16" x 20" color photo of Richard Gordon holding a Maurer DAC. On the bottom of the mat, he has signed: "To Dan Ehrlich-/ Very best wishes & many thanks!/ Dick Gordon". Mat damaged, photo very good.
Additionally with the lot: a group of seven modern 8.5" x 11" glossy prints from NASA's archives of these Maurer 16mm cameras being used on or in preparation for various Apollo missions. Includes an image of the Maurer mounted in Apollo 11.
Neil Armstrong narrates the Apollo 11 moon landing from the 16mm Maurer DAC footage
First steps on the moon as recorded by the 16mm Maurer DAC
Additional Apollo 11 footage from the 16mm Maurer DAC
More Information: 16 mm Data Acquisition Camera
The Data Acquisition Camera is a modified movie camera and is an improved version of the earlier Gemini-type 16mm sequence camera equipped with new-type external film magazines which greatly enhance the photographic capabilities. Primary use of the camera is to obtain sequential photographic data during manned flights. It is used for documentary photography of crew activity within the CM and for recording scenes exterior to the spacecraft. Bracketry installations at each rendezvous window facilitate use of the camera for CSM-LM docking photography to recording engineering data. Camera modes of operation (frame rates) are variable as follows: time, 1 frame per second (fps), 6 fps, 12 fps, and 24 fps. Shutter speeds are independent of frame rate and include 1/60 second, 1/125 second, 1/250 second, 1/500 second and 1/1000 second. Camera power is obtained from the spacecraft electrical system via panel-mounted 28-vdc utility receptacles. Camera operation is manually controlled by an 0n-Off switch located on the front of the camera. Camera weight, less film magazine, is 1.8 pounds (0.8 kg). When mounted at either spacecraft rendezvous window, the camera line of sight is parallel (+2 degrees) to the CM X-axis. Camera accessories include a power cable, film magazines, lenses, right angle mirror, and a ring sight, which are described in the following paragraphs. The remote control cable, described with the 70 mm electric Hasselblad camera accessories, can also be used with the 16mm Data Acquisition Camera.
DAC Timing Cable. The DAC timing cable function is to supply 28 vdc to the 16 mm DAC and route the shutter closure signal to the RHEB panel 227 and the PCM junction box. The DAC timing cable is 32 inches long with a connector at each end. The DAC connector has an orange index mark and is labeled P1 - DAC PWR. The connector for panel 227 is a large 90 elbow, has a blue grey index mark, and is labeled P2 - PNL 227. At launch, the cable is coiled, secured with a utility strap, and stowed in L2. After mounting the DAC in the right rendezvous window, the DAC timing cable is unstowed and the connector (P1 - DAC PWR) is mated to the camera. The SC1 INST PWR switch on panel 227 is verified in the OFF position, the cable connector (P2) is connected to the panel receptacle, and the panel switch is placed to the PWR position. The shutter closure signal is sent to the PCM junction box when the camera is operating.
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