Stainless steel boots took the first steps on the Moon

It has been 43 years since people last walked on the Moon, and one of the things that helped us when we got us there was a pair of trusty stainless steel boots.

Getting to the Moon and exploring it required highly advanced technology, especially for the time, so the team was equipped with cutting edge machinery, tools and clothing in order to collect the lunar samples they needed and return to Earth safely.

The landing

The Apollo 17 mission was the final Apollo mission by NASA and the longest lunar landing, with over 12 days between launch and the team’s return to Earth. A team of three American astronauts (Eugene Cernan, Ronald Evans and Harrison Schmitt) took part in the expedition, landing on the Moon on 11th December 1972 and proceeding to collect many geological samples.

Apollo 17 was the only space mission to make geophysics investigations into the Moon’s electrical properties and gravity field.

The boots

Today, at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, USA, visitors can view the Moon boots worn by astronaut Eugene Cernan, the commander of the Apollo 17 mission. Cernan was the last man to walk on the Moon, and he wore these boots as he stepped back on to the lunar module, shaking off the remaining Moon dust and ending the era of human Moon exploration.

As an essential part of Cernan’s extra-vehicular equipment, the boots contributed to the mission’s success.

Cernan’s spacesuit had boots integrated into it, which included thermal coverings and a pressure bladder, and the extra-vehicular boots were worn over these. The boots included woven stainless steel (Chromel-R) uppers and silicone soles, as well as protection against extreme conditions in the form of extra layers of beta felt and thermal protection.

Steel cutting from the experts

Here at ShapeCUT, we enjoy hearing about steel being used in all sorts of interesting and wonderful applications, so we found the history of these space boots particularly fascinating.

If you need steel cutting services, get in touch with ShapeCUT now on 1800 ShapeCUT. We’re the largest privately owned metal processing firm in Queensland, so you can rest assured we have the knowledge and experience to provide you with top quality profile cutting.