Astronomy pictures of the fortnight, LXIII

Scientists at NASA’s Ames Research Center have resurrected some of the first close-up images of the Moon.  The Lunar Orbiter Image Recovery Project — housed in an old McDonald’s restaurant at Ames and nicknamed “McMoon” — began in 2009 and has so far recovered some 2,000 images from 1,500 analog data tapes.

The images were taken by some of the first unmanned probes sent by NASA to photograph the lunar surface for possible Apollo program landing sites, and represent the first views of the dark side of the moon.  The images were developed onboard the spacecraft and beamed back to Earth, where they were stored on large analog data tapes.

More complete descriptions available after the jump.

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