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This mirrored version of the Apollo 12 photograph AS12-46-6813 shows Alan Bean deploying the three-armed Lunar Surface Magnetometer (LSM). The original image, which can be seen here, is somewhat wider and shows the lander at the left. That photo is noteworthy because of a strange glow around Alan and the LSM. In this version of the photograph there is no such glow, however there are other color aberrations in the midground of the image.

The official NASA note about this photograph reads:

117:35:14 Al has deployed the three-arm Lunar Surface Magnetometer (LSM). The LM is in the background at the left edge of the picture. Good view of the saddlebag on Al's left hip. Because Pete landed so close to Surveyor crater, the LM footpads are below their current position and are hidden by a very slight, intervening rise.

Note the foggy blue patch around Al. Examination of successive frames indicate that this feature is related to the camera lens, very likely a dust smudge. Kipp Teague notes "The lens aberration begins at as12-46-6813. It's a blue glow around the astronaut in 6818, again in 6826, a discoloration in other frames, affecting clarity in most, and it's not gone again until 6853 (back in the LM). Whatever the phenomenon is, it has a varying impact on color based on the brightness of the central object in the image. On bright subjects, the aberration adds a blue cast, and on darker subjects, the aberration adds a reddish cast." I note that it also seems to vary with sun angle.

This was a curious incident during Apollo 12, and this photograph preserves a different version of the phenomenon than what is seen in the usual photograph.

The Apollo 12 Mission

Apollo 12 was the sixth crewed flight in the United States Apollo program and the second to land on the Moon. It was launched on November 14, 1969, from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, four months after Apollo 11. Commander Charles "Pete" Conrad and Apollo Lunar Module Pilot Alan L. Bean performed just over one day and seven hours of lunar surface activity while Command Module Pilot Richard F. Gordon remained in lunar orbit. The landing site for the mission was located in the southeastern portion of the Ocean of Storms.

Condition Description
1969 chromogenic photograph on paper watermarked "A KODAK PAPER" on verso. With NASA ID number AS12-46-6813 stamped on the verso in black ink.