Astronaut drops hammer and feather on the moon

Some of you may recall the fun experiment that was done by the astronaut David Scott on the Moon during the Apollo 15 mission when he tested Galileo’s idea that in the absence of air resistance, a hammer and a feather would fall to the ground at the same rate.

The real question is how Stanley Kubrick faked the above Moon experiment footage, because we all know that based on his spectacular special effects work in making 2001: A Space Odyssey, he was hired by the US government to help perpetuate the hoax that humans actually went to the Moon, when nothing of the sort happened.

I can reveal how he probably did it. He must have used the NASA facility near Cleveland that has what is the world’s biggest vacuum chamber. Here we see a similar experiment done inside it with a bowling ball and feathers.

It would have been easy for Kubrick and his special effects crew to film the hammer and feather drop in that chamber and then make the image fuzzy and add moon background, the tricky rascal.


  1. Matt G says

    If you look very carefully at the background of the Dave Scoot footage you can see Hillary’s emails.

  2. says

    That is the easiest special effect: shoot it on a soundstage with the hammer and feather suspended on black wire. When he lets go, raise the stage.

  3. Jean says

    I had seen the Brian Cox video before and I still have the same reaction: it is extremely frustrating that they never show the full drop at full speed. And from the comments, I’m not the only one.

    The experiment and the slow motion are great to see that there is no difference between the feathers and the bowling ball but it is dumb not to show the complete fall at the real speed.

  4. OverlappingMagisteria says

    “…it is extremely frustrating that they never show the full drop at full speed”

    Agreed! Ad I’m sure that there are some people who see that video might not realize that it is slow motion and think that things fall slower with no air. After all, don’t things float in space? And there’s no air in space! So it makes a certain bit of quasi-sense if, like many people, you don’t think about it much.

  5. DonDueed says

    I’ve read that Scott was a little nervous about doing the demonstration. He was worried that the feather would stick to his glove due to static electricity. That was not an unfounded fear, as the lunar astronauts had lots of trouble with dust sticking to the EVA suits that way.

    Mano, I know you have your tongue firmly in cheek, but I do worry a bit that you’ve given more fodder to the Moon Hoax bozos… and yes, they’re still around.

  6. Mano Singham says


    Yes, there is always that risk. The people who believe such things tend to be humor-impaired.

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