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Soil Mechanics Data Documentation on Microfilm


Availability: At NSSDC, Ready for Offline Distribution (or Staging if Digital)

Time span: 1971-07-31 to 1971-08-02


This data set consists of one reel of 35-mm microfilm that contains tables and graphs, with notes and corrections to the raw data collected using the Lunar Self-Recording Penetrometer (LSRP), on the characteristics of the soil sites in the Hadley-Apennine area of the Moon. The data are divided into 5 sections A through E. Section A contains 6 graphs, one each for indexes (stations) labeled 2 through 7. For each index, the graphs show the penetration depth (in cm) as a function of the stress (in Newtons/sq cm). The minimum penetration is 3.0 cm, at a stress of approximately 1.0 Newtons/sq cm (at index 4). The maximum penetration is 15.8 cm, at a stress varying from 1.6 to 34.8 Newtons/sq cm (at index 5). In section B, which covers raw and reduced data, the tables include information on lunar penetration data reduction for the lunar drum, at each index. The columns tabulate drum load angle, drum circumference, load, stress, ratio of initial drum depth, drum depth reading, penetration depth, and correction applied. The notes include times and locations of samplings, weight of the package, and condition and performance of the equipment. Sections C and D contain postflight notes and corrections factors, including load calibration graphs depicting load (in Newtons) vs circumferential deflection (in mm), a penetration and load, penetration corrections factors, and weights. Section E contains preflight calibration graphs for the drum and for the actual/recorded penetration ratio. These data pertain to a penetrating cone with a 30-deg apex angle, a base area of 3.22 sq cm, and a bearing plate with a 2.54- by 12.7-cm area. The 6 measurements (indexes) were made at station A (8), at the ALSEP site. The LSRP that was used weighed 2.3 kg, could penetrate to a maximum of 76 cm, and could measure a penetration force of a maximum of 111 Newtons. The record of each penetration is inscribed on a recording drum that was returned to the Earth. A lunar reference plane rested on the surface during a measurement and served as a reference datum for measurement of the penetration depth.

The contents of this microfilm collection were scanned as part of the Lunar Data Project (LDP). The digital images (scans) are available as data collection PSPG-00748.

Alternate Names

  • Soil Stress, Penetration


  • Planetary Science: Geology and Geophysics


  • 71-063C-02A

Additional Information



Questions and comments about this data collection can be directed to: Dr. David R. Williams



NameRoleOriginal AffiliationE-mail
Prof. James K. MitchellData ProviderUniversity of California, Berkeley
Prof. James K. MitchellGeneral ContactUniversity of California, Berkeley

Soil Mechanics Data/Information at NSSDCA

Scanned Soil Mechanics Data On-line (Browse images, text files, and jpgs)
Scanned Soil Mechanics Data (Preliminary jpegs and text files)

Apollo 15 Soil Mechanics (Digitized)
Apollo 15 Soil Mechanics (Microfilm)
Apollo 16 Soil Mechanics (Digitized)
Apollo 16 Soil Mechanics (Microfilm)

Related Information at NSSDCA

Apollo landing sites and ALSEP and LRRR locations - and information on the modified DMA/603 control network

Lunar Data Project
Apollo Home Page

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