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Lunar Surface Cosmic Ray

NSSDCA ID: 1972-096C-12

Mission Name: Apollo 17 Lunar Module /ALSEP
Principal Investigator:Dr. Robert M. Walker


This lunar surface cosmic ray experiment had the following objectives -- (1) to measure flux of solar wind particles with atomic number Z > 26 using mica detectors, (2) to determine the flux of light rare gas solar wind ions using metal foils, (3) to measure the flux of low energy particles in space, both solar and galactic, during quiet sun conditions using plastic, glass, and mica detectors, and (4) to determine the radon concentration in the lunar atmosphere using mica detectors. These detectors were hung from the LM, a portion of them in the shade of the LM with the detectors pointed out toward space and the rest in the direct sunlight. All detectors were brought back to earth for analyses of the particle tracks. The total exposure time was 45 1/2 hrs, and the detectors were sensitive to charged particles from about 1 keV/nuc to several MeV/nuc.

Alternate Names

  • Apollo17ALSEP/LunarSurfaceCosmicRay
  • S151

Funding Agency

  • NASA-Office of Manned Space Flight (United States)


  • Space Physics: Heliospheric Studies

Additional Information

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



NameRoleOriginal AffiliationE-mail
Prof. P. Buford Price, Jr.Other InvestigatorUniversity of California, Berkeley
Dr. Robert L. FleischerOther InvestigatorGeneral Electric
Dr. Ernst K. ZinnerOther InvestigatorWashington
Dr. Michel MauretteOther InvestigatorCNRS, Centre Spectrometric Nucleaire et
Dr. Robert M. WalkerPrincipal InvestigatorWashington

Selected References

  • Woods, R. T., et al., Apollo 17 cosmic ray experiment, part B - Quiet time energy spectra of heavy nuclei from 20 to 400 keV/amu, Apollo 17 Preliminary Science Report, NASA SP-330, 19-11 to 19-15, Washington, D.C., 1973
  • Price, P. B., and J. H. Chan, Cosmic Ray Experiment - Part C - The nature of interplanetary heavy ions with 0.1 less than E less than 40 MeV/nucleon, Apollo 17 Preliminary Science Report, NASA SP-330, 19-15, Washington, D.C., 1973
  • Walker, R. M., et al., Cosmic Ray Experiment - Part A, Measurements of heavy solar wind and higher energy solar particles during the Apollo 17 mission, in Apollo 17 Prelim. Sci. Rept., NASA SP-330, Wash., DC, 1973.
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