Flown Space Treaty Carried on Apollo 12, Signed by Alan Bean

Whole Object Name

Flown Space Treaty Carried on Apollo 12, Signed by Alan Bean

Collection

Apollo

Description

This treaty entitled, 'Agreement on the Rescue of Astronauts, the Return of Astronauts and the Return of Objects Launched into Outer Space', was carried to the Moon aboard the Apollo 12 Command Module, Yankee Clipper, in November 1969. It is signed by Lunar Module Pilot Alan Bean, who took it with him to the Moon, just in case the crew needed it upon their return to Earth.

The treaty, known simply as the 'Rescue Agreement', states that if a country becomes aware of a spacecraft landing within its territory due to an accident, distress, or emergency, they must provide all possible assistance to rescue any personnel of the spacecraft. They are also obliged to notify the country that launched the spacecraft and the Secretary-General of the United Nations.

The Rescue Agreement was created in 1967 by the United Nation’s Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS) and came into operation in January 1968. Both the USA and the Soviet Union, wanted an agreement that safeguarded their space travellers in the event of an unexpected landing in unfriendly territory. It was a follow up to the ‘Outer Space Treaty’ that was signed into law in October 1967 - elaborating on the rescue provisions in Article V of the 'Outer Space Treaty'. The agreement promoted international cooperation and has since been ratified by over 90 countries.

Object number

2016-41
  • image Flown Space Treaty Carried on Apollo 12, signed by Alan Bean
  • image Apollo 12 crew from left to right; Pete Conrad, Richard Gordon, Alan Bean - Credit: NASA
  • image Flown Space Treaty Carried on Apollo 12, signed by Alan Bean
  • image Apollo 12 crew from left to right; Pete Conrad, Richard Gordon, Alan Bean - Credit: NASA

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