Divergent ShadowsThere's a sub-community of conspiracy theorists who believe that the moon landings were faked, and they've come up with all kinds of evidence to support this theory. Most of this evidence comes in the form of analysis of photographs and video from the landings; they believe that this evidence proves that the entire thing was filmed on a hollywood soundstage.
One of the examples of this that is often cited is the appearance of "divergent shadows" in some of the pictures. On the moon, the only source of light is the sun; because this light comes from a distant source it's rays are essentially parallel. With a single, parallel light source all of the shadows cast should be parallel as well...but in several of the photographs the shadows appear to go in slightly different directions.
These divergent shadows are cited as evidence that there were multiple spotlights (as one would expect on a soundstage) and thus the photos are faked. However, this interpretation is the result of a lack of understanding of basic principles of optics. Camera lenses (especially wide angle lenses as used in the moon landings) distort an image before it is recorded on film. The divergent shadows on the moon are easily replicated with any consumer camera outdoors on a bright sunny day.
Divergent shadows are just one of the many similar pieces of evidence cited as evidence of the haox...for example:
- Why aren't there any stars visible in the black sky of the photographs...because it's a sound stage! Or, because the brightness of the sun reflecting off the moon's surface is so much brighter than the stars that there is no way the film in the cameras could be exposed properly for the moon surface while also recording the stars.
- When the sun is behind the astronauts, and their shadows are pitch black, how is the front of the astronaut lit up? Must be another light! Or, maybe it's the big reflector right in front of the astronaut - the moon's surface.
So, when putting together a site focused on teaching people about video technology, it seemed like a good name - I'm hoping the materials I'm posting here will help educate people so that they don't have to speculate and invent wild theories about things which are reasonably simple when you have a little knowledge of their workings.