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Lunar Test Article 8 (LTA-8) Gallery


Detail of one of the deployment and downlock mechanisms on the front leg of the LM.

As described by the Lunar Module News Reference,

At earth launch, the landing gear is retracted to reduce the overall size. It remains retracted until the docked CSM and LM attain lunar orbit and the astronauts have transferred to the LM. Before the LM is separated from the CSM, the Commander in the LM operates the landing gear deployment switch to extend the gear. At this time landing gear uplocks are explosively released, allowing springs in deployment mechanisms to extend the gear. Once extended, the landing gear is locked in place by downlock mechanisms.

The deployment portion of the deployment and downlock mechanism consists of a truss assembly, two clock-type deployment springs, and connecting linkage. The truss, connecting the secondary struts and descent stage structure, comprises two side frame assemblies separated by a crossmember. The deployment springs are attached, indirectly, to the side frame assemblies through connecting linkage. The downlock portion of the mechanism consists of a spring-loaded lock and a cam follower. The follower rides on a cam attached to the deployment portion of the mechanism. When the fixed link of the uplock assembly is severed, the deployment springs pull the connecting linkage and, indirectly, the deployment truss. This action drives the landing gear from the stowed to the fully deployed position. At full gear deployment, the cam follower reaches a point that permits the spring-loaded lock to snap over a roller on the truss assembly. The lock cannot be opened. A landing gear deployment talkback advises the astronauts that the landing gear is fully deployed.

Time picture taken Mon Aug 4 09:39:28 2008
Location picture taken Outside Starship Gallery
Space Center Houston
Houston, TX
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