Apollo Knowledge Transfer: Preserving and Transferring the Apollo Legacy to a New Generation
ABSTRACT A perplexing issue is how to convey knowledge and experience from the Apollo Program in a way that is efficiently helpful to presentday teams planning the return missions to the Moon. Such a transfer of knowhow is hard even when there is a continuity of workforce, but the transfer is exceedingly difficult when an interval of some 40 years must be bridged. Present-day lunar team members and students who will become team members have grown up in the era of computer databases. They are skilled at accessing such information. This suggests that one obvious option is to provide Apollo knowledge and experience in a computer searchable format. The Archives and Special Collections Department in the library at the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) is among many organizations that have recognized and implemented this option. At UAH, the document holdings relevant to lunar exploration include a Saturn V collection, a Lunar Roving Vehicle Collection, an Apollo Missions Collection, and documents from the Apollo Group for Lunar Exploration Planning (GLEP). An online catalog has been produced for these materials and each entry has at least an abstract and sometimes a full online text. Further, many video history interviews have been conducted with original participants in the Apollo Program. These are also accessible online. Other information includes reformatted electronic records from the Apollo era and surveys or reviews of Apollo documentation. Given the scope of the past, present and future lunar operations and recognizing the large number of organizations involved, the Apollo information preservation and transfer task is indeed challenging.