Surface Vehicle


Martian Terrain
Lunar Rover
Size and Composition
Modular Trailer System 
Communication and Navigation

Safety Measures

Lunar Rover
  The Apollo Lunar Rover weighted 462 pounds and could carry an additional 970 pounds. It had a range of 50 kilometers and could operate at speeds of up to 10-12 km/hr when traversing level ground. It had a 14 inch clearance when fully loaded and a 17 inch clearance when without a load. Batteries provided power. For steering, there was a hand controller located between the two astronauts. Braking was mechanical: a cable attached to the hand controller could be used to deenergize the drive controller and force brake drums onto wheel hubs. The only "suspension" on the rover was a simple spring mount. Navigation was accomplished with the aid of a gyroscope and distances were estimated by counting the number of wheels rotations during travel.  
  For more information:

Apollo Lunar Surface Journal (
  For pages from the actual manual, go to "Introductory Material" and then "Lunar Roving Vehicle Operations handbook."


mitCopyright © 2000 Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Comments and questions to Last updated: 10 December, 2000