Apollo 17 Lunar Surface Journal Banner

Ending the Second Day

Corrected Transcript and Commentary Copyright © 1995 by Eric M. Jones.
All rights reserved.
Scan credits in the Image Library.
Audio clips by Dave Shaffer.
Last revised 16 December 2012.

MP3 Audio Clip starting at 148:11:40 ( 15 min 01 sec )

148:12:24 Cernan: Okay. Next thing, Jack, you can start verifying your white dots are out.

148:12:27 Schmitt: Okay.

[They are verifying that all of the LM circuit breakers marked in the checklist with white dots are in the open position.]
148:12:31 Cernan: And you can use your purge valve to depress, if you have to.
[That is, he can remove the purge valve to depressurize the suit if the regulator hasn't done the job.]
148:12:35 Schmitt: Well, I don't think I have to. Okay; white dots.

148:12:40 Cernan: Wait a minute. White dot's plus, for you, EVA decals.

[Some of the switches are marked with "EVA" decals to indicate the proper settings.]
148:12:44 Cernan: Okay, I'm good here, here, here.

148:12:54 Parker: And, 17, congratulations. That was two EVAs and a half (worth of achievement).

148:13:03 Cernan: Thank you, Robert, but until I get my helmet and gloves off, I won't say anything. Okay, Jack. On 16, ECS Suit Fan 2, Closed.

148:13:10 Schmitt: Closed.

[They are turning on a pair of fans which circulate oxygen through the ECS Suit Circuit.]
148:13:12 Cernan: Suit Fan Delta-P, Closed.

148:13:13 Schmitt: Closed.

[And, now, they are turning on a sensor which responds to the pressure difference across the fans.]
148:13:14 Cernan: Okay. Master Alarm just came on. Okay. And the Heaters (in the) MESA, Open. You can Open your MESA Heaters (circuit breaker). We're getting a Master Alarm, Houston. I don't know why.

148:13:28 Schmitt: I think that's the...

148:13:29 Cernan: You did get Suit Fan number 2?

148:13:33 Schmitt: ...Suit Fan Delta-P (sensor).

148:13:34 Cernan: Okay. You've got Suit Fan number 2 and Delta-P. Okay ...

148:13:39 Schmitt: MESA (heater) circuit breaker is Open.

148:13:40 Cernan: Okay. That's why it (the alarm) came on; (because the fan isn't up to speed). ECS Caution/Water Sep(arator) component light should go out after that fan comes up. You can doff your glove.

148:13:47 Parker: Roger. We think that's what happened.

148:13:49 Cernan: Okay. (Long Pause)

[Schmitt - "Gene doesn't sound as tired as after the first EVA, but he's eager to get the gloves off. I'm sure I was tired, in part because our last stop, at Camelot, was a little tougher, physically, than some of the others because of walking through the boulders."]
148:14:09 Cernan: Well, I never thought I'd wear my EV cover gloves through two EVAs.
[Cernan - "These were like golf gloves with no fingers. We wore them to protect the suit gloves against abrasion. They really took a beating. They weren't falling apart, but they were pretty well worn."]

[They will take the gloves off during Rover preps on EVA-3. Gene will put his in his thigh pocket and will bring them back to Earth. They are currently in the collection of the Kansas Cosmosphere in Hutchinson, Kansas.]

148:14:12 Schmitt: Oh, I forgot all about them.

148:14:14 Cernan: No, I didn't. I thought about taking them off until I started chipping those boulders. And I'm glad I wore them.

148:14:20 Schmitt: Yeah, I think it's a good idea.

148:14:22 Cernan: As hard as it is on your hands, these cover gloves are just ripped to a nub. Glad it's not my gloves. (Long Pause)

[Schmitt - "I think we had planned to take the cover gloves off after the ALSEP deployment because that was supposedly the major wear. But, it would seem to me that it would have been imprudent to take them off given the way they were wearing. We were pretty active - we were doing lots of stuff - and, every time you gripped something, you were abrading the cover glove with that soil. Gene's wore more quickly than mine because of the brushing and the hammering. Of course, the cover gloves made your hand's bulky. It's just like being out on the snow. The more you put on your fingers, the less mobility you have with them. The fingers are separated and the extra layers cramp you when you try to bend them. The cover gloves probably contributed to our fatigue, and they certainly affected dexterity."]
148:14:42 Schmitt: (You) might consider taking them off tomorrow.

148:14:47 Parker: Roger, 17. You're talking about your cover gloves?

148:14:53 Cernan: Yeah. We're still wearing them, Bob. And, I swore (before the flight that) I'd take them off after the drill, but I used a bit of real-time common sense.

148:15:02 Parker: Okay.

148:15:04 Schmitt: Okay. Gloves are off. LMP's gloves are off. Need some help?

148:15:12 Cernan: Yeah, a bit. (Pause)

148:15:19 Schmitt: I think you just about got it.

148:15:20 Cernan: No, you went the other way.

148:15:22 Schmitt: Did I go the wrong way? Yeah, I did. (Pause) What's wrong with that one?

148:15:33 Cernan: I don't know.

[Schmitt - "It's hard to tell what was going on here, although it may have had to do with lock rings on Gene's gloves. As I recall, you pressed in on the ring and then turned. It was easy to do for yourself - when your hands weren't tired - but then you had to reverse your mind when you were doing it for somebody else, like tying somebody else's necktie."]

[Cernan - "I think there were arrows on the rings. And I do think that that is what we were doing: helping each other because it was cumbersome to unlock your own glove with a gloved hand. Once you got one off, the other one was a piece of cake to get off with your bare hand. By helping the other guy, rather than have him stretch and try to get the ring between his thumb and finger, you could take two hands and push in on the locks with your thumbs and turn the ring."]

148:15:35 Schmitt: Shouldn't have done that.

148:15:37 Cernan: Hey...Let me get this. (Pause) I had them then.

148:15:42 Schmitt: Yeah, I'm sorry.

148:15:45 Cernan: Well, you get that one, and I'll get these two. Get that one. I'll get this one. (Pause) (Garbled). Hold that thing.

148:16:06 Schmitt: Okay. Let me try this one, now. (Long Pause) It wants to go.

148:16:43 Cernan: Let me try that. Yeah, that one (garbled).

148:16:48 Schmitt: Got it?

148:16:49 Cernan: Yeah.

148:16:50 Schmitt: It's usually easier when you do it yourself. The angle's wrong.

[Schmitt - "Boy, this is a classic of a discussion between two people who are looking at what they're doing and not communicating with anybody else. Maybe this was the glove lock rings."]

[In February 1994, I examined an Apollo suit being prepared for public display at the Johnson Space Center in Houston. Operation of the wrist ring requires pushing, simultaneously, a pair of tabs toward the glove fingers and then, while holding the tabs in place, rotating the wrist ring to unlock it. The tabs are separated by about 2 or 3 inches and, at least on an old, worn suit - John Young's Command Module Pilot suit from Apollo 10 - that hadn't been lubricated in a long time, the wrist rings were quite difficult to unlock, even with bare hands. New, well lubricated wrist rings are, according to the dialog, easy for a trained, rested person to operate. However, here, we have two tired astronauts who are also having to contend with equipment that has probably become at least a little fouled with dust.]

148:16:54 Cernan: Oh, boy! (Pause)

148:17:02 Schmitt: (The wrist ring is) starting to get a little stiff.

148:17:03 Cernan: Oh, they came off. Now, they came off. (Relieved to have the gloves off) Oh, ho, ho, ho.

[Cernan - "By the time the mission was all over, my hands were nothing but blisters. The skin on my knuckles was gone. Inside the glove, all the knuckle points were constantly scrapping and, although they hurt, I guess I didn't let it bother me when we were on the surface. You're hands are so vital to everything you do that the gloves were custom fit; but we still ran into these problems. We got down to blue-collar work and you couldn't design everything for the convenience of the astronaut. On the Shuttle, I think, a lot of the equipment they're using in the Payload Bay EVAs are big things that you can hold on to. They don't have Rover breakers to pull, and sample bags to twist, and core caps to put on, and drills to run, and cores to jack out of the ground. If you went through the kind of things we did, your hands would probably get tired even if you didn't have gloves, if you didn't have to work against the pressure of the suit, if your knuckles didn't rub on the inside of the glove, if you didn't have to work with all of the layers covering your hand and your fingers, if you didn't have to work with your fingertips covered with RTV. Even if you took all of that away, if you look at all the work we did during those three EVAs, you would probably end up with your hands fairly tired anyway. How long can you grip a hammer and beat on a core tube and chip rocks even without gloves?"]
148:17:09 Cernan: Okay. Doff helmets, with visors. (Pause) Here; I'll get yours for you. Turn my way, if you can. (Pause)

148:17:26 Schmitt: I know how you feel.

148:17:28 Cernan: I don't know how they're so wet. I don't know whether it's...They're just soaking wet. (Pause) Everything is just twice as hard.

[Gene's hands are probably wet.]
148:17:50 Schmitt: Now comes the old hay fever, again.
[Jack is anticipating having a reaction to lunar dust as he did after EVA-1.]
148:17:54 Cernan: That one (visor) up and that one down. (Pause) "Stow (helmets) in BRA". Let's get mine off, though. (Pause)

148:18:14 Cernan: (Garbled) Velcroed... Well, these things are off. Oh, man. Does that (dust) smell, doesn't it? You sure can pick that up.

[Cernan - "There was a definite smell of spent gunpowder. I'll never forget that."]
148:18:23 Schmitt: Okay. You got yours?

148:18:24 Cernan: I've got mine. (Pause) Okay, Bob. Now, (chuckles) helmets and gloves are off.

148:18:35 Schmitt: (Cabin) pressure looks good, still. (Long Pause)

148:19:02 Cernan: Hello, Houston. Do you read?

148:19:03 Parker: Roger, 17. Read you loud and clear, Challenger.

148:19:10 Cernan: Very good, Robert. The helmets and gloves are off.

148:19:13 Parker: Absolutely outstanding crew, there.

148:19:15 Schmitt: Why don't you go home and get some sleep, Bob?

148:19:16 Parker: Absolutely outstanding. I can't say more than that. And I mean it from the bottom of my heart (pause) or the bottom of my soul or something, my conscience.

148:19:25 Schmitt: Thank you, Bob. Well, it's all (of) ours.

[Schmitt - "I meant that it was the achievement of the whole Apollo team."]
148:19:30 Cernan: Bob, it's all your good training and help...

148:19:34 Parker: 7 (hours) plus 37 (minutes), from 3.5 (psi) to 3.5.

148:19:42 Schmitt: As mission scientist, you're totally responsible.

148:19:45 Parker: And the backup crew (Young and Duke) says that you are even better than outstanding.

148:19:48 Schmitt: Remember, it's in your contract. (Hearing Bob; laughs) Well, thank you. We enjoyed it.

148:19:58 Parker: Hey, I'll turn you over to Little Joe (Allen), here...

148:20:00 Cernan: Ohhh, boy!

148:20:01 Parker: ...while I go talk to some people.

148:20:05 Schmitt: Thanks again, Bob. We...

[Journal Contributor Brian Lawrence notes that, although Joe Allen is not very tall, the nickname "Little Joe" also comes from the character of "Little Joe Cartwright" in the very popular TV Western series "Bonanza".]
148:20:05 Parker: We've got a 9 and 1/2 hour EVA scheduled for you tomorrow. We're planning to spend 2 and 1/2 hours extra over there at Station 4 (at Shorty Crater).

148:20:15 Cernan: (Laughing) I hope those gloves that you've got packed in the back have got something in them (that is, a cold beer). (Laughing) Oh, let's read the checklist. See if we can go to bed on time tonight.

148:20:28 Schmitt: Oh, man.

148:20:29 Parker: Okay. That might be a change.

148:20:30 Schmitt: I feel better than I did last night, as a matter of fact.

148:20:32 Cernan: (To Jack) Turn that light on.

148:20:33 Parker: I'm going to turn you over to Joe.

148:20:35 Cernan: That (light) didn't do very much good.

148:20:36 Parker: See you guys tomorrow.

148:20:38 Cernan: (To himself) Okay. "Verify safety on dump valve." Yes.

148:20:41 Schmitt: Okay, Bob. Get some sleep, huh?

148:20:43 Cernan: (To himself) Yeah, I verified them both.

148:20:44 Schmitt: (To Bob) Sorry to be touchy, occasionally.

[Schmitt - "I was referring to the times when I was annoyed with Parker, such as at Station 3."]
148:20:46 Cernan: (To Jack) "Descent Water Valve, Open."

148:20:51 Schmitt: Okay. (Pause) Water Valve's Open.

148:20:55 Cernan: Okay. Then you can take your purge valve off. (Pause) There's a little dust in that (purge valve fitting) tonight. Little stiffer. Wiped that out again. (Reading) "Remove purge valves, stow in purse. Disconnect OPS hoses."

[They are removing the purge valves for cleaning. With the purge valve removed, the port in the suit is closed.]
148:21:17 Schmitt: Oh, man! That is dusty.

148:21:18 Cernan: Yeah, let me disconnect yours; you disconnect mine. It's easier with the...

148:21:24 Schmitt: I think I can get...What did you say?

148:21:25 Cernan: ...OPS hoses.

148:21:26 Schmitt: Oh, yeah.

148:21:27 Cernan: Or whatever it said.

148:21:28 Schmitt: Yeah.

148:21:29 Cernan: Disconnect OPS hose.

148:21:34 Schmitt: Is that what it said?

148:21:35 Cernan: Yeah. (Pause) Maneuver my fingers in here a little bit better. (Pause)

148:21:48 Cernan: They are all showing a little bit of stickiness.

148:21:51 Schmitt: Glad we're in this (means "doing this") in pairs.

148:21:54 Cernan: (Laughing) Well, just everything's, you know, harder to...

148:22:01 Schmitt: Okay. There, you're disconnected.

148:22:02 Cernan: PGA diverter valve, horizontal.

148:22:04 Schmitt: Okay. Horizontal.

[With the diverter valve in the horizontal position, air is flowing into the suit cavity. During the EVA, they had it in the vertical position and only got flow into the helmet. Flow into the torso helps dry the suit by keeping some flow going despite the fact that they have their helmets and gloves off.]
148:22:09 Schmitt: (Now on Surface 5-2) And Suit Isol(ation Valves), both to Suit Flow.

148:22:12 Cernan: All right...We don't have the LM hoses on. So don't...Put mine to Suit Flow to get some air in here.

148:22:20 Schmitt: Yeah. Start filtering the dust.

[Schmitt - "We were setting up the LM oxygen flow and, even though we weren't connected to the LM hoses, the system would start to filter dust out of the air."]
148:22:27 Cernan: PLSS pump, Off; and fan, Off.

148:22:29 Schmitt: Okay.

148:22:32 Cernan: Man, that's hot. Feel that.

[Gene may be talking about his RCU because that is where the switches for the pump and fan are located. See the discussion at 148:25:00.]
148:22:36 Schmitt: (It was) out in the Sun.

148:22:38 Cernan: Yeah.

148:22:40 Schmitt: Pump's Off. Fan's Off.

148:22:42 Cernan: Okay.

148:22:46 Schmitt: "Disconnect PLSS H2O from PGA." Okay.

[The PGA or "Pressure Garment Assembly" is the combination of suit, PLSS, and visor assembly.]
148:22:49 Cernan: And connect LM water. That's what we want.

148:22:53 Schmitt: (Garbled). The P(ressure) and O(xygen) flags.

148:22:57 Cernan: Yeah. (Garbled) LM water hose, here.

148:23:04 Schmitt: I'm sorry that's so complex, there.

148:23:07 Cernan: Oh, that's perfectly fine.

148:23:08 Schmitt: But it was easier to start.

148:23:10 Cernan: It had to be. (The dust) smells like someone's been firing a carbine in here. (Pause)

148:23:18 Cernan: Why don't you stay there and push in that...

148:23:19 Schmitt: I will

148:23:20 Cernan: ...pump breaker...When you get it. (Pause)

148:23:26 Cernan: Hey, Little Joe? Are you there?

148:23:31 Allen: 17, this is Houston. And...

148:23:33 Cernan: Little Joe, are you there?

148:23:35 Allen: Roger. How do you read Houston? Over.

148:23:40 Cernan: Joe, we're reading you loud and clear. We're on the left-hand column (of the post-EVA card) and we're both going PLSS mode to O, and we'll be off the air for a skosh.

[They are still on the left-hand column of Surface 5-2. "Skosh" means "a little bit".]
148:24:48 Allen: Roger, Geno. I've been following you real close, and you two are mighty smooth. Boy, was that nice today.

148:24:57 Cernan: Thank you.

148:24:59 Schmitt: (To Gene) Feel how hot that is.

148:25:00 Cernan: Yeah, the whole thing.

[Comm Break]

[After turning off the PLSS by going to Mode O, they hook up the LM comm circuit before recharging the PLSS oxygen tanks and then doffing the backpacks. Because of the short interval between Gene's comment about "going PLSS Mode to O" and Jack's remark about a hot piece of equipment, the most likely candidate, again, would seem to be the chest-mounted RCU. An alternate interpretation comes from Apollo 15 when, at 148:39:34, Scott and Irwin noticed that the EVA-2 SRC was hot. For Apollo 17, I think it is far more likely that the "hot" object is an RCU than the SRC because, at the start of the Apollo 17 EVA-2 at 141:19:53, Gene mentioned that SRC-2 was in the shade.]

148:27:42 Schmitt: Okay, Joe. LMP's PLSS is getting O2.

148:27:45 Allen: Thank you.

[Long Comm Break. They are recharging Jack's PLSS for EVA-3 and are on the right-hand column of Surface 5-2.]

[Schmitt - "We were recharging the PLSSs mostly just to get them out of the way. And, if you had a problem, then you'd know it right away. That's always a good philosophy: try to identify your problems early. Then they'd have all night to work it."]

148:31:45 Schmitt: Joe, O2 is off.

148:31:48 Allen: Roger.

[Comm Break. Next, they will recharge Gene's PLSS.]
148:32:57 Cernan: Hey, Joe. This is Gene.

148:33:00 Allen: Go ahead.

148:33:05 Cernan: Hey, Challenger has been holding at about 5.5 (psi) ever since we got in here. Are you all happy with that? (Pause)

148:33:18 Allen: Looks good to us, Geno. We have been watching it and everyone is happy down here.

148:33:26 Cernan: Okay. Well, this morning, when we were getting ready, we saw it at 5.5 and part of that (Gene's concern) is that it's been at 5.0 all of the time. Just so we are not venting anything (into the cabin), that's all. (Long Pause)

MP3 Audio Clip ( 18 min 55 sec )

148:34:00 Allen: Geno, we hear you on that and we'll be watching it. (Long Pause)

[The nominal cabin pressure is 5.0 psi and Gene's question is whether or not there is some valve open that should be closed. Eventually, they will trace the increased pressure to a slow leak in Pressure Regulator A. There will be more discussion of this leak through the evening and into Day 3.]
148:34:13 Schmitt: Joe, we're about 2 minutes into the CDR's (PLSS) O2 charge.

148:34:19 Allen: Thank you.

[Comm Break. Jack does not sound as congested as he did after EVA-1.]
148:35:48 Schmitt: Joe, LMP has 96 percent on his (oxygen) gauge.

148:35:55 Allen: Thank you, Jack. We copy that. (Long Pause)

148:36:52 Allen: Geno, with regard to your observation made to us a few moments ago, I guess we will ask for the Cabin Return (Valve) to the Auto position and your Suit (Gas) Diverter (Valve) to Cabin, please. We are about two-tenths of a psi from Cabin Relief. Over.

[They are resetting the Suit Gas Diverter valve so that oxygen can flow from the suit circuit into the cabin. Frank O'Brien has provdied a photo of the upper part of the forward surface of the ECS ( 628k ) in the LM simulator at the Cradle of Aviation Museum. The suit gas diverter valve is at the upper right in its own recess.]
148:37:14 Cernan: Okay, we're getting that now. (Long Pause)
[If the cabin pressure exceeds 5.83 psi, a relief valve will dump the excess out of the spacecraft. As long as the valve works, there is no danger to the crew or the LM but, obviously, they would rather not waste oxygen.]
148:37:57 Cernan: Joe, CDR is reading 94 percent on the O2 charge.

148:38:03 Allen: Thank you.

[Long Comm Break.]

[Having finished Gene's PLSS recharge, they are disconnecting and removing the RCUs and OPSs and then the PLSSs. These activities are listed on Surface 5-3. Before stowing the OPSs, they will perform OPS checkouts and report the source pressures. The checkout procedures are stenciled on the OPS cover, as can be seen in training photo KSC-72PC-347. The procedures can also be found in Section 4.2.1 in Volume 2 of the A15-17 EMU Handbook.]

148:44:47 Schmitt: Okay, Joe. LMP's OPS pressure is 6300 (psi).

148:44:51 Allen: Thank you.

[Comm Break]
148:47:57 Schmitt: Commander's OPS pressure is 6100.

148:48:01 Allen: Copy, 6100.

[Comm Break. Next they will change the PLSS batteries and LiOH canisters. These activities are listed in the right-hand column of Surface 5-3.]
148:49:02 Schmitt: Say, Joe, our cabin pressure is rising even higher, now. About 5.7.

148:49:08 Allen: We copy that.

148:49:12 Schmitt: Joe, we had the commander's hoses stowed, but in Suit Flow. That might have done it. Is that right?

148:49:20 Allen: Sounds very plausible, Jack. We'll look at it a little more here.

[Long Comm Break. Jack is speculating that oxygen from the Suit Circuit is being added to the cabin through Gene's hose without returning to the Suit Circuit. However, it is normal procedure to have both Suit Isolation Valves ( 628k ) in Suit Flow at this point. The Cabin Gas Return Valve is currently in the Egress position and no oxygen would be flowing from the cabin to the suit circuit through that valve; cabin gas should be flowing back into the suit circuit through the return hoses; and, finally, with pressure regulators A & B both set to Cabin, there shouldn't be any oxygen being added to the suit circuit.]

[The following dialog was accumulated during a change-of-shift press briefing and times are not available.]

148:53:14 Allen: Challenger, this is Houston. Requesting you move your Demand Reg's A and B to Egress, please. (Pause)

148:5x:xx Schmitt: They're (now) Egress.

[Houston wants Jack to turn off oxygen flow from the tanks in the descent stage to the cabin. They are testing the possibility that one or the other of the pressure regulators is adding small amounts of oxygen to the cabin even with the pressure substantially higher than 4.8 psi, the normal cutoff point.]
148:5x:xx Allen: Okay. (Long Pause) 17, Houston. We noted down here that your Suit (Gas) Diverters went to Egress and we want the demand Reg's to the Egress position, please.

148:5x:xx Schmitt: That's right, but the Suit Gas Diverter (Valve) extends when you go to Egress.

148:5x:xx Allen: You're right, again.

[Whenever either of the regulators is set to Egress, a sensor activates a solenoid which puts the diverter valve in Egress as well. The diverter valve has a push/pull control and Egress is the extended ("pull") position.]
148:5x:xx Schmitt: Houston, do you figure we're relieving?

148:5x:xx Allen: Jack, we don't think so. It looks like you're pretty steady at between 5.5 and 5.6. We're watching it very closely, however.

148:5x:xx Schmitt: Okay, you know when we had that problem this morning, I hope the backflow did not hurt something when I had the LMP's hoses stowed and the Isol valve(Suit) Isol(ation) Valve in Suit Flow.

[During the EVA preps, Jack had apparently stowed his hoses in such a way that oxygen could not flow out of them and into the cabin, thereby creating some back pressure.]
148:5x:xx Allen: Jack, just for your information, we saw about the same thing last night. The only difference was the pressure didn't climb quite so high. So, we think that, whatever it is, it really doesn't involve the small problem you had this morning.

148:5x:xx Schmitt: Okay, Joe.

[Comm Break]
148:59:35 Cernan: Okay, Joe. We got the commander's PLSS back in the recharge station. We got a new battery in it - odd numbers - and a new (LiOH) canister in it and we are working on Jack's right now.

148:59:xx Allen: Okay, Gene. Sounds good.

[The recharge station is on the left bulkhead next to Gene's shoulder. However, they aren't doing any recharging at this time but, instead, are just getting Gene's PLSS out of the way.]

[Cernan - "The odd numbered batteries were the Commander's and the even numbers were the LMP's. That way you could keep them straight. When you took a bad battery out, you'd put the new ones in the order 1,3,5 and 2,4,6 and you'd know you had the right battery at the right time."]

[Comm Break]

149:02:44 Allen: 17, Houston.

149:0x:xx Schmitt: Go ahead, Joe.

149:0x:xx Allen: We are still watching your cabin pressure down here. Could you check for us, please, if the PLSS (oxygen) fill valve is securely closed?

149:0x:xx Schmitt: Yes, it was closed.

149:0x:xx Allen: Okay.

[If the PLSS fill valve were open, it could be adding oxygen to the cabin.]
149:0x:xx Schmitt: Joe, do you want me to check out the regulators?

149:0x:xx Allen: Stand by.

149:03:49 Schmitt: Houston, Challenger. Do you want me to check the...(Hearing Allen) Okay. ED Batts are 37.2.

149:0x:xx Allen: Copy that.

149:0x:xx Schmitt: PCM's going High. (Pause) Let me know when you're ready for the battery management.

[Jack still doesn't sound as tired or congested as he did at the end of EVA-1. He remarked on this at 148:20:30.]
149:0x:xx Allen: Roger.
[Comm Break. They are now on Surface 5-4.]
149:05:31 Allen: 17, Houston. Standby on the battery management for a few minutes, please. And, in the meantime, could you check the low pressure PLSS fill valve, Closed, please? Over.

149:0x:xx Schmitt: Joe, I checked that. It's closed.

149:0x:xx Allen: Thank you.

[Comm Break]
149:0x:xx Schmitt: Houston, Challenger.

149:0x:xx Allen: Go ahead.

149:0x:xx Schmitt: Does your telemetry and our gauge come off the same telemetry...(correcting himself) same transducer on that?

149:0x:xx Allen: That's affirm. It does. (Pause) And, Challenger, we've got a communications problem at one of the (terrestrial receiving) sites and are going to ask you to go to panel 12 and turn the Power Amplifier to Primary, please.

149:08:27 Schmitt: Okay, it's Primary.

[Comm Break]
149:xx:xx Allen: And, Challenger, we're ready for battery management, at your convenience.

149:xx:xx Schmitt: Okay, stand by.

[Comm Break. Jack may be just finishing changing batteries and the LiOH canister on his PLSS. Once that is done, he will lay his PLSS on the floor between them. After the battery management, he and Gene will weigh and stow the samples.]
149:12:03 Cernan: Hey, Joe?

149:1x:xx Allen: Go ahead.

149:1x:xx Cernan: Okay, this is Geno. I just dug a rock out of my pocket. No one back there probably remembers, but when we were at Shorty (at 145:39:00), fumbling around, trying to get everything done, I said there was a piece of very shiny, black, glass-like-looking material that reminded me of obsidian. Well, it's not. It looks like a very fine-grained, gray rock. But, it's a fractured piece; and I've picked up fractures of about three or four vesicle faces on it. The vesicle faces are very shiny and that's what reflected and caught my eye. I think the unique part about it is...Jack may want to say something else about it...the unique part about it is that I picked it up (at) Shorty. Undocumented, halfway between the Rover and where we were sampling that orange stuff. And it will be in bag 12 Echo.

149:1x:xx Allen: Okay, Geno. Copy, 12 Echo. And, I was assured by the folks here when I came in...

149:1x:xx Cernan: That'll go in ...

149:1x:xx Allen: ...that you did indeed have a shiny sample of some kind in your pocket and would probably find it later on. So, they called that one. Could you turn off the Power Amplifier...

149:1x:xx Cernan: Okay, we'll put it (meaning the sample) in SCB-8.

149:1x:xx Allen: Okay, go ahead.

149:13:34 Cernan: (Responding to Allen's instruction about the Power Amplifier) Okay, it's off and we will put that rock in that sample bag and put in SCB-8.

149:1x:xx Schmitt: Joe, this rock looks very much like (Apollo 12 sample) 12008. It's a fine-grained, very coarsely-vesicular gray rock. Probably basaltic.

[Sample 12008 was collected at the end of the first Apollo 12 EVA. It is a fine-grained basalt with a notable ilmenite content.]

[Cernan - "It's amazing - like somebody remembering license plate numbers!"]

[Schmitt - "(Laughing) I had the sample numbers memorized in those days! I had worked very closely with the Apollo 11 samples; and, with two or three other people, I had done an introduction to the Apollo 11 Science Conference. My main contribution was to look at all of the basaltic samples and, particularly, study the minerals that lined the vesicles. And, after Apollo 12 came back, I extended that study. Bob Sutton and I gave a talk at the Apollo 12 conference in 1971 but, unfortunately, that paper has never been finished or published. We did something that had never been done before; and that was to try to relate the positions of the samples to the depth for which they were derived by the various impacts that formed craters in the vicinity of the Apollo 12 landing site. The 12 crew did an excellent job of sampling; they got a good distribution of samples. It was the only place where I think we had a chance to really look at the layering within the upper portion of the mare basalts. I need to finish that paper."]

149:1x:xx Allen: (Amused) Okay, Jack. Real fine. We want Low Bit Rate. Power Amplifier, Off, and Low Bit Rate. And we can maybe label that one 17008. How does that sound?

149:1x:xx Cernan: No, you got to label that Gene's Rock. I was going to tell you those other things, but I thought I'd let Jack.

149:1x:xx Allen: (Laughing) Okay, thank you.

149:1x:xx Schmitt: The vesicles, if I may project the size of them, probably were up to 4 or 5 centimeters in diameter. They're irregular in shape, but they're clearly vesicles and it looks like they are lined with either glass or very fine-grained crystals. They're very shiny.

149:1x:xx Allen: Roger.

[Cernan - (Tongue-in-cheek) "I want to thank Jack for supporting all my geologic observations about Gene's Rock, which looks very much like the Apollo 12 rock 12008."]
149:1x:xx Schmitt: And for our next act...

149:15:48 Allen: Jack, we're going to ask, for your next act, that you check for us both PLSS valves, Off, and both OPS valves, Off. Over. (Long Pause)

149:16:51 Schmitt: Joe, they're both verified Off.

149:xx:xx Allen: Okay, Jack. We understand that all four valves are verified Off.

149:xx:xx Schmitt: That's affirm, Joe.

149:xx:xx Allen: Okay, thank you. I'm sure that you realize that we're still showing that pressure increasing very, very slowly and are pretty well convinced that nothing is leaking in from the outside. So, we are looking around on the inside here.

149:xx:xx Cernan: Joe, is our oxygen consumption abnormal at this point?

149:xx:xx Allen: No, not at all, Geno. Everything looks pretty normal, except this slow creep in the cabin pressure.

149:xx:xx Schmitt: Well, I guess the possibility is a creeping Reg(ulator) or a (faulty) transducer, is that right?

149:xx:xx Allen: Yeah, either that or it maybe we're just watching some of the effects of the thermal shock that your tanks took from the repress itself. We're not worried about it at all, but we are still watching it.

[Comm Break. One possible cause of the pressure increase is the heat load added by the warm suits, PLSSs, samples, and sample containers. Twenty years after the fact, Jack wonders if Allen may have been referring to the LM oxygen tanks, perhaps a temperature increase in the tanks resulting from the sudden outflow during repressurization. This does seem to be Allen's reference, but the speculation doesn't sound very plausible.]
149:xx:xx Schmitt: Joe, you might make a note that my two S-E-P area samples went into bag (SCB) 8 also.

149:xx:xx Allen: Roger, Jack. That's noted.

[Usually, Jack and Gene pronounce the acronym as a single word: "Sep". This may be the only instance where Jack spells the acronym.]
149:xx:xx Cernan: Joe, got some numbers, if you'd like them?

149:xx:xx Allen: Go ahead.

149:xx:xx Cernan: SRC is 41.5. Bag 6 is 24, bag 8 is 35.

149:xx:xx Allen: Copy, 41.5; and 24 in bag 6; 35 for bag 8.

149:xx:xx Cernan: That's it. (Pause)

[These are aggregate weights of the containers and the samples in them, measured in terrestrial pounds. The empty SRC weighs 14.7 pounds, each of the empty SCBs 1.7 pounds, and each of the individual sample bags a negligible 1/50 of a pound. In addition to bagged samples, the SRC also contains the long can - empty weight, one pound - and four core stems which, empty, collectively weigh 2.6 pounds. The Mission Report gives a net weight of about 75 pounds of samples for this EVA, a figure in good agreement with the 78 pounds estimated here. Gene and Jack collected about 31 pounds of samples during the first EVA and will collect about 137 pounds during the final traverse. The weights are being taken so that the flight engineers will have a good reading of the LM weight and, if necessary, can adjust stowage of the rock containers to control the center-of-mass in preparation for lift-off.]

[Schmitt - "They wanted to make sure we didn't get over our margins so that we wouldn't have to use the RCS (Reaction Control System) to complete the rendezvous."]

149:xx:xx Schmitt: Joe, how many samples did we get today?

149:xx:xx Allen: Standby.

149:xx:xx Schmitt: Don't start a big investigation. I'm just curious.

149:xx:xx Allen: (Making a mis-identification) Let me ask around, Gene. We will see in a minute.

149:xx:xx Allen: 17, we think you have 54 samples from this EVA, plus some cores.

149:xx:xx Schmitt: Thank you, Joe. Just curious.

149:xx:xx Allen: That's not half bad.

[Gene and Jack will collect a total of 243 pounds of samples, compared with 210 pounds by the Apollo 16 crew, 170 by Apollo 15 crew, and a combined total of 215 pounds returned by the Apollo 11, 12, and 14 crews.]
149:21:56 Cernan: And, Joe, we're on (page) 5-5 and I am going to start doffing (his suit).
[Prior to removing the suits, they turned on a heater for the urine dump line and, then, emptied the urine collection bags.]
149:xx:xx Allen: Okay, Geno. Copy 5-5, and before you get started there, would you put both Demand Reg's to Closed, please? As we continue to watch this pressure.

149:22:19 Schmitt: Okay, Joe. Demand Reg A, going Closed. (Pause) Demand Reg B going Closed. (Pause)

149:2x:xx Allen: Thank you. And we verify 'em both Closed.

[Schmitt - "By closing the regulators we stopped the flow of make-up oxygen into the cabin. The air in the cabin still circulated and, as you breathed down the oxygen and scrubbed out the carbon dioxide, you had a gradual decrease in pressure."]

[Long Comm Break. They have started to get Gene out of his suit.]

149:27:54 Allen: 17, this is Houston. We'd like the Suit Gas Diverter (Valve) back to Cabin, please?

149:28:16 Schmitt: Cabin.

[They are letting oxygen from the suit circuit flow into the cabin through the diverter valve again. This will tell them if the source of the extra oxygen is in the suit circuit.]
149:28:20 Allen: Okay.
[Comm Break]
149:31:46 Allen: Gene and Jack, you'll be interested to hear that the cabin pres(sure) is dropping down, very slowly now. So, we think we have a tiny leak in one of the (two) cabin demand regulators, and we'll run a check (to see which one is leaking) after you get squared away there a little better. (Pause)

MP3 Audio Clip ( 14 min 52 sec )

149:32:15 Schmitt: Okay, Joe. We'll be at your beck and call.

149:32:26 Allen: I'll only smile at that.

[Very Long Comm Break. Jack's sinuses sound a little clogged. During this period they are probably cleaning the zippers and other fittings on Gene's suit as per checklist page 5-5. Once they are done, they will stow the suit on the engine cover, neck ring aft, and will put the suit legs in jettison bags to try to control the dust. Once that is done, they will reconnect the air hoses to the suit to help dry it out.]
149:47:51 Schmitt: Houston, Challenger.

149:47:54 Allen: Go ahead.

149:47:59 Schmitt: Joe, we're going to air out the suits. We're going to go to Suit Flow on the Commander's (Suit) Isol(ation) Valve now.

149:48:11 Allen: All righty.

149:48:16 Schmitt: Say again.

149:48:21 Allen: That sounds good.

[Schmitt - "When you took it off, the inside of the suit was damp but there wasn't water sloshing around."]

[Long Comm Break. Gene and Jack are two hours behind the nominal timeline. Now they will get Jack out of his suit and, then, clean and stow it.]

149:57:02 Schmitt: Joe, I guess you guys are tired of looking at my heart beat. So, I'm gonna turn the Biomed off as I get out of my suit.

149:57:12 Allen: Okay, Jack. (Long Pause)

149:57:49 Cernan: Hey, Joe. This is Geno. How do you read me (on LM comm)?

149:57:51 Allen: Geno, you're five-by(-five).

[Cernan - "This is just pilot's talk. 'Five-by-five' just means that you're reading loud and clear."]
149:57:56 Cernan: Okay, we're going to get Jack out of his suit. I'll be monitoring (mostly for comm from Houston).
[Schmitt - "There wasn't much Gene could do but unzip me. So he just stood back out of the way while I wiggled to extract myself. It didn't take very long as long as the inside of the suit was reasonably dry and, because the zipper was on the front, you could get out by yourself if necessary."]
149:58:03 Allen: Roger. (Long Pause) From the way the two of you worked today, I'd think you could just about turn him upside down and pour him out. (Pause)

149:58:30 Cernan: Yeah...If he'd fit through that little hole in the end of his wrist. (Pause)

149:58:41 Schmitt: Joe, the day they can pour me out of anything, they'll call me "Slim". Talk to you later.

149:58:49 Allen: (Laughing) Okay. (Pause) Among other things.

149:58:55 Cernan: Remember those nice white suits? (Pause)

149:59:06 Allen: The Clean Room will never be the same again.

149:59:13 Cernan: You'd never believe it.

[Very Long Comm Break]

[Cernan - "I think you've really got to start out clean. There weren't any special 'clean-room' precautions like you utilize when you're making computer chips or something like that. People wore coveralls and they wore coverings on their shoes so that they wouldn't drag in dirt, but it wasn't burdensome in any way. You went in in your street clothes to suit up. You just wanted to start out with a clean suit, with clean wrist bands and all your seals working. 'Start with a whole airplane. Don't leave town with only part of an airplane, because you may lose another part of it on the way.' We proved that we could put the suits on, take them off, and put them on again - repeatedly and in a very constrained and not very clean environment. We tried to dry them out and we tried to wipe wrist rings off. We tried to make sure that the quick-disconnects on the oxygen hoses were clean. We proved that we could do it because we had no other choice. That's the way it was designed. But I don't know that, the way we were treating them, we could have gone for ten EVAs and not have trouble with them. I'm sure we probably would have had trouble, as a matter of fact. With all that dust, you're going to have seals start leaking. You've already heard us talk about how hard it was to turn the wrist rings because dust was getting in them; and, if you used them a little bit more, they were going to quit working altogether. If you're talking about a lunar base, I'm sure that, after ten outings, the suits are going to have to be put on a rack to be cleaned up and oiled and a few other things. At some point you're going to have to go through a refurbishment cycle and, if you're going out every day, you'll certainly want to have a couple of suits so that, while the technicians are cleaning up one, you've got another to use. We didn't push the hardware to that limit, but I'm sure we would have run into some problems if we had."]

["That was one of our major concerns: care and treatment of the suits. The worst thing in the world would be to be on the lunar surface and not be able to go out because your suit has a leak in it. So we were awfully, awfully careful with those things. There weren't four guys to help you and keep you cleaned and brushed and oiled. Rather than having the suits hanging on a rack, they were laying in a bundle on the engine cover; so you took care of them the best way you could."]

[A composite image (2.5 Mb) made by Ed Hengeveld from photos AS17-134-20522 and 25, giving a wide view from the LMP's station.]

150:18:34 Allen: Challenger, this is Houston.

150:18:39 Cernan: Go ahead, Houston. Challenger here.

150:18:42 Allen: Geno, we're going to start to investigate which of your demand regulators is leaking and we're going to ask you to put Demand Reg Alpha to Cabin now. And, as we watch it, please do not make any urine dumps. Over.

[Although the urine is dumped into a sump in the descent stage, opening the dump valve would influence the cabin pressure at least a little and Houston wants to watch what will probably be small variations in pressure in response to the regulators.]
150:19:03 Cernan: Okay, we will not make any urine dumps and we'll go to Cabin now. (Pause) Okay, Alpha's in Cabin. And we'll be ready for your debriefing here in about 5 minutes.

150:19:21 Allen: Okay, Geno. And, it's going to be a short one.

[Long Comm Break. Having gotten Jack out of his suit, they then got out of their Liquid Cooled Garments and into their Constant Wear Garments or, longjohns. They are now on Surface 5-6.]
150:27:17 Schmitt: Okay, Houston. We're going Down-voice, Backup.

150:27:22 Allen: Standby on that. (Pause)

150:27:29 Cernan: And, okay; we are ready for your EVA-2 debriefing. (Pause)

150:27:48 Allen: Okay, 17. To begin with, we want you to delete that step going to Down-voice, Backup. And I've got a surface block data to read up to you. A few minor changes in your Lunar Surface Checklist. And a couple of very quick questions for the debriefing when you're ready. Over.

150:28:17 Schmitt: Go ahead, in the stated order.

150:28:23 Allen: Roger. Moving right along now to the surface block data. Lift-off times: T-33, 152 plus 30 plus 01; T-34, 154 plus 28 plus 33; T-35, 156 plus 27 plus 05; T-36, 158 plus 25 plus 37; T-37, 160 plus 24 plus 09. Over.

[These are optimum lift-off times for upcoming orbits of the Command Module, beginning with orbit 33.]
150:29:26 Schmitt: Okay, Joe. Starting with 33. 152:30:01, 154:28:33, 156:27:05, 158:25:37, 160:24:09. And what's our present rev?

150:29:51 Allen: Rev 32, Jack. (Pause)

[Ron Evans, in the Command Module America, is roughly over the landing site, about halfway through orbit 32. Orbit 33 will start over the middle of the Farside at about 151:37.]
150:30:06 Cernan: Hey, Joe, for pantry purposes, what day is this? (Pause)

150:30:16 Allen: We've checked around the room here and the consensus is that it's (3:23 a.m. Central Standard Time) Wednesday morning (13 December 1972). Over.

150:30:28 Cernan: Oh, okay. I really wanted to know whether it was irradiated ham or frankfurter morning, and I guess we can work that out. (Pause)

[Schmitt - "The trail-food-like packages of freeze-dried or dehydrated food were connected together and, as you pulled them out of the storage compartment, you were supposedly getting that day's pre-planned meal. Now, that was the case in the Command Module and, in the Lunar Module, it probably wasn't that organized and we just had large packages with the mission day indicated: LMP Day 5 or something like that."]
150:30:52 Allen: Roger, Gene. Apparently, the Surgeon is happy with either of those days. And we want you to turn, right now, to (page) 5-7 in the checklist and perform that one particular step, at 150 hours, which will prevent the computer clock from overflowing. And that's the "Proceed, Verb 37 Enter, 06 Enter, Proceed" step. We'll stand by for that. Give us a mark as you start it. Over.

150:31:34 Schmitt: Okay, we're starting. Proceed (pause), Verb 37 Enter (Pause)

[Jack reads the steps while Gene, who is off comm, enters them into the computer.]

[Journal Contributor Frank O'Brien notes that the steps 'Verb 37 Enter, 06 Enter' will start the computer powerdown program but he is "unclear how this will prevent the computer's clock from overflowing when the computer is powered up again."]

MP3 Audio Clip ( 16 min 08 sec )

150:32:00 Cernan: Okay, Joe. You don't want me to go on the Verb... You're not going to give us an update, huh?

150:32:07 Allen: No update required. That was just to prevent an overflow. And then I'm ready for the quick changes in the Lunar Surface Checklist when you are. (Long Pause)

[Cernan - "I think our computer-based inertial navigation system was the state-of-the art. It ended up in 747's flying across the Pond (usually the Atlantic Ocean). We'd write the software for the different missions and it would take hours and hours in the simulator to wring out all the bugs in it before you would have a level of confidence in it that it could be declared operational. It's obsolete equipment today but, as far as I know, there was nothing comparable at the time in military or commercial aviation."]
150:32:45 Schmitt: Okay, Joe, go ahead.

150:32:50 Allen: Okay. Begin by putting the Demand Reg Bravo to Cabin position and leave the Demand Reg Alpha in the Cabin position where it now is. And I'll continue on with the changes in the checklist here. Page 5-6, left-hand side, where it reads "Configure ETB." The fourth line down that starts out "Four B&W mags," they should read, "Hotel, India, Juliett, and Romeo in LCG compartment." Then going up to the right-hand side under "Stow in ETB," change the line "One B&W mag Romeo" to read "One B&W mag Kilo." Over.

150:34:15 Schmitt: Okay, Joe. I changed the mags in the "Empty" from Kilo to Romeo and the mag in "Stow" from Romeo to Kilo.

150:34:30 Allen: Okay, that sounds like the thing to do. And a note on your demand regulators. We're showing that the demand regulator Alpha has good integrity and we're now in the process of checking demand regulator Bravo. I've got a couple of fairly quick questions here when you're ready for those.

150:34:54 Schmitt: Okay, Joe. Go ahead with your questions; and integrity is certainly what we need around here, right? (Pause)

150:35:11 Allen: Okay. Jack, a question for you to begin with. Is your gold (electroplated) visor sticking halfway down? Apparently, that's based on a discussion earlier. Over. (Pause)

150:35:36 Cernan: Yeah. Apparently his visor is sticking. (Pause) (To Jack) Which one?

150:35:36 Cernan: The gold visor? No, he said his sunshade is sticking halfway down, but his gold visor's not.

[Schmitt - "I was working a lot with my gold visor halfway down, just so I could see better. And they got confused when Gene or I made a comment some other place that the sunshade wouldn't come all the way down."]
150:35:45 Allen: Okay, that answers the question. We couldn't tell from the TV whether it was the visor or the sunshade. That's fine. We also heard some discussion about possible wear in the seats of the suits when you were dusting each other off. We want to know if you could see any hint of the aluminum layers showing through in the suits. Over.
[Joe is referring to comments made at 147:55:56 when Gene was dusting Jack's PLSS.]
150:36:13 Cernan: No, Joe. Not to worry. It's just a few scars on the PLSS thermal blanket in back where you probably rub the seat when you get in. Nothing on the suits.

150:36:24 Allen: Okay, Geno. Now two real quick geology questions that will help us do the planning for your EVA tomorrow. The first one has to do with Station 4. And you called out some material on the rim (of) the crater at Station 4 which looked like "bedded spatter". And we're wondering if that resembled things that you'd seen in Hawaii? Over.

150:37:00 Schmitt: Hey, Joe, I think they misheard. I think I may have said "shattered" and you might have thought "spattered". No, I didn't - neither one of us - intended to leave that impression. The big rock we sampled looked like intensely-shattered gabbro, such as we've had around the LM. Probably more significantly, the rocks - one of which Gene picked up - (were) the fine-grained, coarsely-vesicular basalts. And we didn't have any time to really examine the interrelationships of those rock types there, but those were the two fragment types we saw.

[The phrase that Jack used at 145:25:00 to describe the Station 4 boulder was "intensely fractured". A search of the Station 4 dialog reveals nothing resembling "bedded spatter" or, as another possibility, "bedded strata".]

[Schmitt - "If we had seen 'bedded spatter' or some other clearly volcanic-looking material, they would have sent us back to Station 4. If there was any indication at all that it was a volcanic cone, we would have gone back there."]

150:37:44 Allen: Okay, Jack. That's quite clear to us now. Also a question about Station 4...

150:37:51 Schmitt: Joe...Joe.

150:37:53 Allen: Okay, go ahead.

150:38:04 Schmitt: The bottom of that crater, now, had material that was extremely disorganized in its aspect and, really, we didn't have time to examine it in detail in order to decide why it was disorganized. It did not necessarily look (in texture) like the boulder that we sampled at the rim.

[At 145:23:48, Jack described the rocks in the bottom of the crater in the following words: "The central peak, if you will, or central mound, is very blocky and jagged. And the impression I have of the other mounds in the bottom is that they look like slump masses that may have come off the side."]
150:38:34 Allen: Okay, Jack. Understand that. A question about the boulder you sampled at the rim. Would you compare the basalt in this boulder - which you may have called a gabbro, I'm not sure, in any case a basalt - to samples which you collected at Camelot and at ALSEP. Over.

150:39:01 Schmitt: Well, my impression was that they were the same rock types.

[Jack sounds like his sinuses may be a bit clogged.]
150:39:06 Allen: Okay, that's our impression, too. Thank you. That's it for us on the questions. And for information, we're showing your cabin pressure is holding fairly steady even with both those demand regs on.

150:39:26 Cernan: Okay. Keep watching it for us, would you, and let us know. I expect one of them is probably leaking pretty slow.

150:39:33 Allen: Yeah; no worry about that, Gene. We're looking at it real close.

150:39:44 Cernan: How's (Command Module) America looking to you?

150:39:47 Allen: It is just as clean as a whistle.

150:39:58 Cernan: It may not be when we get back there, judging from the looks of us. (Pause) That's good to hear, though. It's a good bird. So is this one. (Pause)

150:40:20 Schmitt: Joe, is there any...You got any more debriefing questions?

150:40:25 Allen: Negative, Jack. And we're interested that you move right along so we can get you turned in there and get some rest.

150:40:37 Schmitt: We're moving. We're eating now, and we feel the same way, I think. (Long Pause)

[Schmitt - "Almost certainly, I was surprised - and I think I recall it now - that they didn't want to ask more questions about EVA-2. More than likely, there were lots of questions; but the Flight Director was saying 'We've got to get them back on the timeline and get them to sleep.' We did a lot of geology debriefing when we got home but, unfortunately, we can't find the tapes or a transcript. I sat with Lee Silver and probably Muhlberger and Swann and others and recorded a lot of extra debrief."]

[A raw transcript of the post-mission geology debriefing were found for us in early 1994 at the Lunar and Planetary Institute in Houston by Carol Albyn.]

150:41:12 Allen: Troops, enjoy your meal there. And at your convenience, you can go ahead with the (PLSS) feedwater recharge. We want you to hold off on the oxygen recharge until we watch these regs for about another 10 minutes. And give us a mark if you do start the water recharge, please. Over.

150:41:36 Cernan: Okay. (Pause)

150:41:46 Allen: And if there are any ways we can cut corners on the time here, it'll be helping us, because we're still looking at being down a couple of hours nearly.

150:42:01 Cernan: Okay, Joe. We're working at it as fast as we can. (Pause) Best place in the world to make it up is tomorrow night.

[Schmitt - "After EVA-3, you were getting ready to go home, you'd done what you'd come to do so why worry about getting your full eight-hour rest period? You don't need eight hours of rest anyway; five was plenty, I think, for both of us. Plus, we were going to spend three days in orbit after rendezvous, so there wasn't going to be any hurry. So I think Gene was just trying to discourage them from even thinking about shortening the EVA."]
150:42:19 Allen: Right, Geno, and, actually, we're going to pick up a good one shortly, because we're coming up to a pad in the timeline. So, as long as we don't waste too much time, we're doing pretty well.
[That is, there is an hour's worth of unallocated time in the schedule. This is the item on Surface 5-7 called "MCC-H Conference"]
150:42:34 Cernan: Okay; be assured we're not. There's just a certain amount of housekeeping we have to do. But, very seriously, day after tomorrow is a very short day, and I think we ought to look at making up any time. I'm a hold-faster on sleep periods but tomorrow('s rest period) is the one that I think is flexible.

150:42:56 Allen: Roger. We hear you.

[Cernan - "We had five and a half hours to get prepared from the time we woke up to the time of lift-off and that was an enormous amount of time. We could have pushed the third night's sleep back and gotten up an hour later. And, if we did shorten the sleep, once we got back in the Command Module we could make it up."]

[As things will turn out, they will have a 7-hour rest period after a full, 7-hour, 15-minute EVA.]

[Cernan - "I've said that I thought sleeping on the Moon was a big waste of time. We needed physical rest, we needed to get out of our suits, but I really wish we'd had more time to absorb what was going on. There's no human being who can consciously take in all of an experience like that while it is occurring. Subconsciously, you do retain things that you weren't aware of at the time and it takes a while for those to come out. You have to be careful that you don't develop a convenient memory and have things come out the way you might like to have them come out or in a way that makes you look like you had all the right answers beforehand. It's a very dangerous trap that you can fall into. So I wish we'd had more time to absorb things. But we had no choice; we had to rest and, as crew commander I had to maintain some discipline in our relationship with the ground. We knew we had some padding in the schedule, we knew we could go out a little longer, we knew we could sleep a little less; but the eight hours was important because, although we really only slept about four hours, we needed to think and talk and rest."]

[Long Comm Break]

150:46:12 Schmitt: Hey, Joe. This is Jack. We're eating here. Won't be too long at it, but if you've got any significant news or anything, why don't you give it to us? (Long Pause)

150:46:46 Allen: Jack, I don't know if it's significant news, but at least I know you'll be interested. Both your demand regs look good now. We show no evidence of a leak there and it may have been that just recycling them reseated them and solved whatever problem we had. You can go ahead with the O2 (top-off) recharge on the PLSS and the water recharge at your convenience. And let me poll the room here for other news items. Over.

[Comm Break]
150:48:21 Schmitt: Okay, Joe, we're starting an O2 charge of the CDR's PLSS; (that is, recharge for) ten minutes.

150:48:26 Allen: Okay.

[Long Comm Break. The PLSS recharge was scheduled to start at 149:30. Evidently, they have decided to do the recharging tasks while they eat. They are now on Surface 5-7.]
150:53:29 Allen: Challenger, this is Houston.

150:53:36 Schmitt: Go ahead, Joe.

150:53:42 Allen: Roger. This is a news report to eat by. I'll combine an orbital science report with a sports report, an unusual combination here. I'll start out with a sports report on Monday Night Football, which you may not have heard yet. Joe Namath tried mightily to lead the New York Jets into the American Football League playoffs, but the Oakland Raiders grounded the Jets in a fourth quarter 24 to 16 blitz. Namath passed for more than 400 yards but, in spite of it, New York scored only one touchdown.

150:54:20 Allen: Moving along to the successes of Captain America, I'll run down different items in the SIM bay here, beginning with the UV spectrometer. In general, the data has been excellent. We're getting indications that the hydrogen atmosphere of the Moon is much less than expected. In fact, I don't think we're detecting any, but rather setting a limit on the amount of hydrogen around the Moon. There was an Aerobee launch...(correcting himself) or, an attempt at an Aerobee launch from White Sands on Monday to calibrate solar UV radiation, but this launch failed because an instrument viewing port in the rocket failed to open. A second launch - let's see - was scheduled, I think, for today, and I don't know whether that was successful or not. (Pause) I guess it'll be launched later today. The infrared scanning radiometer is performing beautifully. Indications are that subsolar-point surface temperatures are higher than we've detected from our Earth-based observations before. We're seeing many thermal anomalies, particularly in (Mare) Procellarum - in the Procellarum area west of Copernicus. And we're seeing also a few unusual cold spots, which apparently are indicating areas of very fine soil with a few or no blocks in and on the soil. The lunar sounder data is beautiful, and the power monitor signals we find correlate with the surface features. And the HF (high-frequency radio) data indicates to us that we are detecting a variety of layers in the mare areas. (Long Pause)

MP3 Audio Clip ( 12 min 24 sec )

150:56:52 Schmitt: Joe, this is Jack. Do you know where specifically they're seeing the hot spots west of Copernicus?

150:57:02 Allen: Jack, I don't have it on the page in front of me here. We're going to check into it and I'll get back to you in a second.

[Comm Break]
150:58:42 Allen: Jack, this is Houston. With regard to your questions on the hot spots, apparently they've not yet indexed these warmer sources that they're detecting to the CSM ephemeris, and so they don't know exactly what they correspond to as far as the surface features themselves go. So I can't help you on that right now.
[Houston knows the times at which the hot spots were seen from the Command Module instruments; but geographical identification will require knowing exactly where the spacecraft was in its orbit at each of the observation times.]
150:59:14 Schmitt: Okay, Joe. Just curious.
[Comm Break]
151:01:04 Allen: Gene and Jack, TELMU handed me some numbers which I think you will be interested in. From the EVA-2 EMU summary, the elapsed EVA time was 7 hours plus 37 minutes plus 22 seconds for a new outdoor record under international rules. The rest of the sheet looks free from problems in a comforting way. Let's see, average metabolic rates: for you, Geno, 855 (BTU per hour); and, Jack, you're running at around 920. And that's relative to pre-mission (estimated) averages of around 850. And you have a grand total EVA time now of 14 hours 49 minutes and 35 seconds.
[The previous single EVA records had been 7:12 and 7:23 set during the second EVAs on Apollos 15 and 16, respectively.]
151:02:19 Cernan: Very interesting numbers, Joe. Do you have any idea how the metabolic rate compared to yesterday?

151:02:25 Allen: Good question. Let me ask on that one. (Pause) Yesterday you were running at 1045 and 1090. So you're down considerably from your work rates of yesterday, which is good news. Maybe you're learning how to do it more easily or something like that.

[Schmitt - "Because we spent at least a couple of hours on the Rover on this second EVA, clearly we didn't stress ourselves as much as during the first day. And we were more familiarized, so there was less emotional stress than on the first EVA, if there had been any at all. And I'll tell you, I never remember feeling anxious about anything except about the timeline and being able to get things done."]
151:02:57 Cernan: Yeah, but we spent a lot of time riding today and a lot of time working yesterday.

151:03:03 Allen: That's true. I guess that's not taken into consideration of the average here. It's certainly true. We can ask for the metabolic rate of the Rover. I bet that is pretty impressive for today.

[Schmitt - "Joe was joking here. He was going to ask how hard the Rover worked. That's the way Joe thinks."]

[The energy saved by riding the Rover is shown dramatically by the following table of activity averages. The table is derived from the Apollo 17 Mission Report.]


Average Metabolic Rate (BTU/hr)


Gene's Average

Jack's Average


479 447

Geology Stations

1036 1189

ALSEP Deployment

1129 1104

Rover Deployment
and other Overhead

1200 1130

All Activities

946 950


[Jack notes that, even though he spent a lot of time leveling equipment versus Gene's efforts with the drill, he also spent time laying out the geophone lines. He offers his relatively low ALSEP average in support of his contention that running with the cross-country stride didn't consume much energy.]

[Cernan - "Our rates weren't all that different. (Laughing) Of course, I had to expend a lot of my energy getting Jack all squared away, so you'd probably want to take about ten percent off of my average and add it to his. I had to get his valves turned off, shove him in the hatch, help him on the Rover, pick him up when he fell. So, realistically, we've got to take that into account. (Somewhat more seriously) My rate while we were driving was about ten percent higher than Jack's and maybe that had to do with the fact that you're not a casual driver on the Rover - you're involved all the time. And I've got to believe that that shows up as an expenditure of BTU's."]

151:03:18 Cernan: Well, don't get me wrong. Driving that Rover is soft; but, I'll tell you, it keeps your attention.

151:03:29 Allen: I'm sure it does.

151:03:31 Schmitt: It keeps the passenger's attention, too!

151:03:32 Allen: I'm sure it does. We noted some comments when you were rolling along today; and reading between the lines from time to time. (Pause)

151:03:59 Cernan: Actually, Joe, for good long spans of the run up to Station 2, except when we had to pick our way up the Hole-in-the-Wall, I was running full bore at anywhere from, I guess, what'd I say, 10 to 12 to 15 clicks. I didn't hit 15 going up (to Station 2) very much. Coming down I did, but it's really a "standby for a turn and watch where you're going" type of run. Because the small craters, of course, are the ones that can really jolt you. But the trouble is, you can never see what's just over the next ridge, and the next ridge may be 20 meters away and you just can't see it until you're there, and you don't know whether its a dish crater or whether it's a pit crater.

151:04:56 Allen: Roger, Gene. We copy that.

[At 10 kilometers per hour, they would cover 20 meters in 7 seconds. Note Gene's statement of 15 kph versus his claim of 17 1/2 or 18 kph at 144:21:31.]
151:04:58 Schmitt: Joe, that des...

151:05:00 Allen: Go ahead.

151:05:03 Schmitt: That description fits the geology up in there (on the Scarp), because we weren't seeing blocky rimmed craters and otherwise you would have been able to tell more easily about the old versus new craters, which would be the ones you could either go through or not go through, respectively.

151:05:22 Allen: Roger. (Pause)

[The avalanche that produced the light mantle had covered the Scarp to considerable depth with fine material and, unlike out on the valley floor, there were very few blocks of any size near the rims of even the freshest craters. Therefore, when they were approaching a crater, unless they could actually see the interior, there was no ready way to distinguish the deep, fresh craters - which they wanted to drive around - from the shallow, aged craters they could usually drive through.]
151:05:33 Cernan: That's a super machine to drive though, Joe, I'll tell you. If you had enough time you could really learn to take it all the way. But you don't really do that, just the second time around.

151:05:51 Allen: Geno, was it spraying dirt at you today? Could you notice that you still missed the real fender and that the patched fender wasn't quite doing what maybe it could?

151:06:08 Cernan: No, sir, I don't think we missed it at all.

151:06:15 Schmitt: Fact is, we're recommending a design change, Joe.

151:06:25 Allen: That'll be for next year's models.

151:06:32 Schmitt: That's right.

[Long Comm Break as they finish eating, get the debris out of the way, and refill their in-suit drink bags.]
151:10:20 Schmitt: Hey, Joe. Is it all right to use the waste management system (to make a urine dump)?

151:10:28 Allen: Rog. We're happy with those demand regs now. And you can proceed on with that (urine dump) and including all the PLSS recharges that you'll need to do as well.

[Comm Break]
151:13:23 Cernan: Joe, we're filling my PLSS with water now. You might check on the (change in the) water quantity (in the descent stage tanks during the fill).

151:13:29 Allen: Roger. Thank you.

[Long Comm Break]
151:23:11 Cernan: Joe, that should take care of my PLSS for tonight.
[Next, they will recharge Jack's PLSS.]
151:23:17 Allen: Okay, Gene. Thank you. Out of curiosity, have you packed, or are you packing, the ETB now (for EVA-3)?

151:23:27 Cernan: Yeah. Jack's doing it right now.

151:23:29 Allen: Okay; we've got a last minute change. We show that your mag Bravo is at about 77 frames, and we'd like for you to leave it in the ETB - it is already in the ETB - and take it out with you tomorrow. We can shoot up the remaining frames if we run out of film otherwise.

151:23:55 Cernan: Okay; fine. That goes along with our thinking. (Long Pause)

[Magazine Bravo - number 134 the overall Apollo catalog - is the one Gene used during the first EVA.]

[At some point prior to the start of EVA-3, Jack takes a series of photographs out his window. He uses magazine 140, also known as Echo. Because that magazine was on Jack's camera at the start of EVA-3, he probably took the window pictures (assembled by Dave Bryne) after putting the magazine on the camera but before stowing it in the ETB. He is currently packing the ETB for EVA-3, so this is probably about the time he takes AS17-140- 21352 to 21358.]

[Frame 21354 shows the Rover and the replacement fender. In frame 21355, note the darkened Rover tracks near the ALSEP and how the tracks disappear into the swale.]

151:24:28 Allen: You know, apparently you made some comment earlier in the day about being bothered by comm noise during your egress from Challenger. Did that go away right away, or did it just cease to bother you? What was the story on that?

151:24:49 Cernan: I don't remember. So, it must have gone away, because the comm was great.

151:24:56 Allen: Okay; that's what we kind of assumed. (Long Pause)

151:25:24 Cernan: Okay; we're charging Jack's PLSS with oxygen. (Pause)

151:25:33 Allen: Sounds good.

[Very Long Comm Break]
151:39:44 Cernan: (Sounding tired) Houston, Challenger. The O2 fill is complete on the LMP's PLSS, and we're working on the water.

151:39:56 Allen: Roger.

[Comm Break]
151:42:19 Allen: Challenger, for your information, we're coming up on (a) comm handover in about a minute and a half.

151:42:33 Cernan: Okay.

[The current time on Earth is 1036 GMT on 13 December 1972. Joe has mis-spoken. The Moon will not rise at Madrid for about an hour. He probably meant 'an hour and a half'.]

[Long Comm Break]

[Cernan - "I sound a little tired. It was the end of a long day. During these long periods of silence we were probably eating something, packing things away, and cleaning up a little bit. Sort of relaxing a little bit and doing our own thing; letting them know, every once in a while, where we were. And they were leaving us alone to get things prepared for our rest period. It was good. You need that kind of time."]

151:47:33 Cernan: Hello, Houston; Challenger. The LMP's PLSS is charged.

151:47:36 Allen: We copy it. (Long Pause)

[They are at about 150 hours in the timeline and have gained, at most, about ten minutes.]
151:47:52 Cernan: Joe, how's the weather gotten down there? Any better?

151:47:55 Allen: Geno, the weather is better. We were really socked in yesterday. That front's moved on through the Houston area, and it is cold and clear tonight, I suspect. It's been a while since we've been out, but they are calling for it to go down right near freezing.

151:48:21 Cernan: Okay. Thank you.

[Very Long Comm Break]

[Schmitt - "This was one of the few chances you had to reflect a little bit. This was just a gradual wind-down from the long day. While we were filling the PLSSs and doing the other things, Gene and I chatted, mostly about what'd we'd done rather than what we'd seen. And often, I think, we were speculating about the kind of things the ground might recommend. I wish we'd talked more with the ground about the geology, but I also understand the Flight Director's position."]

MP3 Audio Clip ( 8 min 18 sec )

152:16:12 Schmitt: (Sounding quite stuffy) Hey, Joe; Challenger.

152:16:17 Allen: Go ahead.

152:16:22 Schmitt: (Have) they succeeded in leveling the gravimeter (the LSG), yet? (Pause)

152:16:33 Allen: Jack, we'll check it, update our information on that. My understanding at the moment is that they've not; but they're thinking that the unit's just too cold and they're in the process of warming it up by dumping heat into it by running some of the equipment around it and in it, and they've by no means given up hope for that unit.

152:17:02 Schmitt: I figure that means that my fooling around with it didn't help 'em.

152:17:07 Allen: Apparently, it didn't do too much for them, but what it did do was convince them that it's probably somehow locked up because its temperature's not right yet. And they're not worrying about whether it's level or not level now. They're confident that it's been set up okay, and now they're just biding their time to bring that temperature up. We'll get some more words to you sometime tomorrow on it as you make your traditional visit to the ALSEP site again, probably. How are you coming along with your sleep prep?

152:17:44 Schmitt: We're just about there, Joe. We picked up some time somewhere in here. Couldn't be much more than an hour behind.

152:17:56 Allen: No, that's just about right. You're looking pretty good on that.

[Deke Slayton joins the conversation.]
152:18:02 Slayton: If you get to sleep in the next 5 minutes, you're one hour behind.

152:18:08 Cernan: Yes, sir; I'm putting my hammock up now, as a matter of fact.

[They are now on Surface 5-8. The rest period was scheduled to start at 151:25.]

[Schmitt - "Gene got his hammock up first and got in it, then I put mine up and got in it. There wasn't much spare space. The suits were on the engine cover under Gene's hammock and, as I recall, the helmets and visor assemblies were way at the back, sort of under the suits."]

152:18:16 Schmitt: What's he (Slayton) doing up so late?

152:18:22 Slayton: Well, somebody's got to sit up and keep you guys honest. (Pause) I think we're getting more sleep down here than you are. (Pause)

152:18:44 Schmitt: (Garbled).

152:18:47 Allen: I might add that not only do we have to stay up late, we have to get up mighty early to keep you honest, too.

152:18:58 Schmitt: Okay; you going to let us sleep 8 hours or what?

152:19:03 Allen: That's affirm, Jack. We're looking good on the time, and not only will you get, we hope, 8 hours of good sleep, but you'll have a full EVA tomorrow. So, it's not costing us anything there.

152:19:21 Cernan: Sounds great, Joe. I fully expect it won't be much longer now. (Long Pause)

152:19:48 Allen: And, Gene, just for rough planning purposes, we'll start to figure your sleep period starting around 152:30. And we'll be looking at your getting up around 8 hours from that time.

152:19:11 Cernan: Okay, Joe; I'll buy that. (Pause)

152:19:21 Allen: Might add, also, that there are a lot of us looking forward to that third EVA tomorrow. It's going to be the last one on the lunar surface for some time.

152:19:37 Cernan: I tell you, if it's anywhere near what the first two were like, we're looking forward to it, also. (Long Pause)

152:20:00 Allen: Gene and Jack, we're still marveling at the beautiful television pictures that we're getting from your TV camera there. It's fun, in fact, to watch the tracks that you're leaving behind in the lunar soil, both footprints and Rover tracks. And some of us are down here now reflecting on what sort of mark or track will - someday - disturb the tracks that you leave behind there tomorrow.

152:20:39 Cernan: That's an interesting thought, Joe, but I think we all know that somewhere, someday, someone will be here to disturb those tracks.

152:20:53 Allen: No doubt about it, Geno.

152:20:55 Schmitt: Don't be too pessimistic, Joe. I think it's going to happen.

152:21:00 Allen: Oh, there's no doubt about that. But it's fun to think about what sort of device will ultimately disturb your tracks.

152:21:13 Schmitt: Well, that device may look something like your little boy.

152:21:19 Allen: Ah; he'd make short work of them. (Long Pause)

[Joe's son, David Christopher Allen, was a very active four year old at the time of the mission.]
152:21:32 Cernan: Joe, I'll tell you it's also a pretty philosophical thought to think that you're riding around out here on what is really undisturbed everything, you know. If there was someone here, way back when sometime, they didn't leave much sign of their whereabouts, but that's an interesting thought, too, as you drive around and all of a sudden cross your own Rover tracks and figure out those are the only ones that have maybe have ever been here.

152:22:06 Allen: Very true.

152:22:09 Cernan: And with that, I'm rolling out my hammock. (Long Pause)

152:23:11 Cernan: Okay, Joe. I'm waving goodnight to you. I'm rolling up my overhead (Rendezvous) window cover. (Pause)

152:23:24 Allen: Okay, Gene and Jack. We'll say good night to you from down here, unless there's some other way we can help you.

152:23:38 Cernan: No, sir. If there is, we'll give you a call, though. (Long Pause)

152:23:51 Allen: Just want to end by saying what a terrific job you did today, and we're really looking forward to tomorrow. Have a good 8-hours rest.

152:24:05 Cernan: Thank you, Joe.

152:24:09 Schmitt: Tomorrow we answer all the unanswered questions. Right?

152:24:15 Allen: If not more.

[Cernan - "It was easy to get philosophical. I've said before that I've always felt that sleep was one of the greatest wastes of the short time we had on the Moon. You're only there for 75 hours and you sure don't want to waste twenty four of it sleeping or resting. You'd like to be doing something that would allow you to go further in learning and exploring. And, yet, you had to rest if you were going to take advantage of your physical and mental capabilities the next day. Each EVA you became more tired and you began to sleep. When I slept, I slept pretty good. I don't know, maybe I got three or four good hours of sleep. So a lot of the time you'd just lay there and think. Just before you'd gone to bed, you'd look out the window and see the flag and the Massif and the Earth. There you were, a quarter of a million miles from Earth, laying in a hammock in a little tin can. 'Here I am; I'm really on the Moon. What should I be doing that I'm not doing? How can I take advantage of this? Is it real? Is it a dream?' I've always said that looking back at Earth was a link with reality from a place that was almost like a dream. During the rest of the mission you get caught up with all the things that you've got to do: checking out the PLSS, checking out the LM, doing the geology, driving. You get so caught up with what you're doing that you could be almost anywhere. So you've got to take time out sometime during the mission to think about where you are and what you're doing. You could do a little of that during the EVAs themselves. While Jack was dusting me off I could take a look around at the Massifs and the flag and the Rover and it was a pretty big chunk to swallow. So it was easy to get philosophical."]

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