The Soviet Lunokhod (“Moonwalker”) Moon rover is under discussion in the comments on the “Congratulations, Opportunity” post. As I was looking at the photos of Lunokhod on the Wikipedia here, I was struck by how familiar it looked. It’s been bothering me all day. Then this afternoon I remembered this little toy, standing among all the other weird little objects surrounding our big TV:It’s Lunokhod: our very own tiny (about 2 inches long) model of the Russian rover that was wandering the Moon at the same time as the Apollo program! Lunokhod is nuclear powered, it looks like one of those tubs you put apples in at apple picking time, and its technology was resurrected to aid in the clean up after the Chernobyl disaster. Plus it’s been hiding in plain sight on my entertainment center.
(That Canon of mine, while deficient in speed in autofocus and writing to memory, takes a pretty nice macro photo. Image by Pam Bliss. The model Lunokhod is a capsule toy from Japan, and appears courtesy of Wolfie.)