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NASA camera sells for over half a million Euros

A camera that was the only one of fourteen to return from NASA missions to the moon has sold for 660,000 EUR in an auction that took place in Vienna on Saturday.

The camera was only one of the 14 hand-held devices that was used on the Apollo 15 mission in 1971 and had been estimated by the Westlicht Gallery to fetch between 150,000 and 200,000 Euros.

The one-off device was bought by the founder of the Japanese electronics chain Yodobashi Camera, Terukazu Fujisawa, after an exciting bidding war at the gallery on Saturday evening.

Astronaut James B. Irwin took 229 photos on the Hasselblad "Lunar Module Pilot" which was being sold by an Italian collector.

Of the fourteen cameras that were taken to the moon on the Apollo 15 mission, thirteen were left up there for the simple reason that it was essential to be as light as possible when heading back to earth. Any non essential items were simply dumped, and only the film magazines were brought back.

This camera was the exception, as engineers wanted to see how it's use in outer space had changed the camera.

The Hasselblad 500 'EL DATA CAMERA HEDC' was from the first generation of NASA motor-driven cameras designed for the Lunar missions.

It was silver painted, with raeseau plate and matching body number '38' that was then imprint on any images.

The control tabs were designed for use with space gloves and the body is engraved: NASA no.P/N SEB 33100040- S/N 1038.

Hasselblad cameras have played an integral part in the Space program, with a range of special modifications and improvements required to meet the demands of space travel.

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