Lunar Roving Vehicle


[15] In the LM the astronauts will take with them to the surface a four-wheeled vehicle that can be used to transport themselves and equipment over the lunar surface. It is termed the Lunar Roving Vehicle (LRV) or Rover (figure 12). It is powered by two silver-zinc, 36-volt batteries and has an individual electric motor for each of the four wheels. A photograph of the Apollo 15 Rover, taken on the Moon's surface, is shown in figure 13. A photograph of the folded Rover taken just before it was placed in the LM is shown in figure 14. The Rover deployment scheme is shown in figure 15. There is a navigation system that contains a directional gyroscope and provides information as to total distance traversed as well as heading. The instrument panel is shown in figure 16. In addition to the astronaut's oral descriptions, television pictures are telemetered back to Mission Control in Houston from the Rover. These pictures will be shown over the regular TV networks.


FIGURE 12.-The Lunar Rover.

FIGURE 12.-The Lunar Rover. Both astronauts sit in seats with safety belts. About 7 minutes are required to fully deploy Rover. The capacity of the Rover is about 1000 pounds. The vehicle travels about 10 miles per hour on level ground. The steps necessary to remove it from the LM and to ready it for use are shown in Figure 15.


FIGURE 13.-The Apollo 15 Rover.

FIGURE 13.-The Apollo 15 Rover. Shown in the background is Mount Hadley delta, a 12,000 foot mountain. The valley on the right side of the photograph is about 1200 feet deep. On the Rover, note the high gain antenna and the television camera in the front and the tool carrier in the rear. The scale of the photograph varies greatly from the foreground to the horizon; it may be obtained from the footprints, the Rover, and the mountains in the distance, NASA PHOTO AS51-82-11121.

FIGURE 14.-Folded Rover.

FIGURE 14.-Folded Rover. To save space in the LM, the Rover is carried to the Moon folded in this fashion. This photograph was taken at Cape Kennedy shortly before Rover was placed in the LM. NASA PHOTO 1OS-KSC-3710-171/4.

FIGURE 15.-Deployment sequence for the Lunar Roving Vehicle.

FIGURE 15.-Deployment sequence for the Lunar Roving Vehicle.

FIGURE 16.-Rover Instrument Pane

FIGURE 16.-Rover Instrument Panel. This panel contains all of the power switches for the Rover, an indication of the direction in which the Rover is heading, the speed at which it is traveling and the information (direction and distance) necessary to return safely to the LM. Also shown are the power and temperature of various motors. The small box below the instrument panel contains the gyroscope. NASA PHOTO S-72-16181.