Apollo 15 hand controller will headline space memorabilia auction

A hand controller used by the Apollo 15 crew to land on the Moon's surface is coming to auction in May.

Commander David Scott employed the rotational hand controller to bring Lunar Module Falcon safely down on the Moon's surface in 1971.

Apollo 15 hand controller
David Scott guided Lunar Module Falcon down to the lunar surface using this controller

The item has a $10,000 starting bid ahead of RR Auction's May 22-ending space sale, a figure it should smash considering past performances of Apollo 15 space flown memorabilia.

A hand controller from Apollo 15's command module made $72,556 last year. The fact that the present lot has the added attraction of contact with the Moon should see that figure surpassed.

The auction will also feature a Crewman Optical Alignment Sight (COAS), also operated by Scott on board Falcon. It has a $2,500 starting bid.

Richard Jurek, the co-author of Marketing the Moon: The Selling of the Apollo Lunar Program, explains why Moon mission artefacts fare so well on the collectibles market.

"Demand far outstrips supply for truly rare, and unique, lunar surface artifacts from the Apollo lunar landing missions, and these items represent the pinnacle of Apollo-era flown material," says Jurek.

Looking for Apollo 15 memorabilia at a more modest price? View this fine autograph from mission commander David Scott.

The 600-lot auction also features a glove worn on the Moon by Apollo 11's Buzz Aldrin and an Apollo 11 mission-flown Declaration of Independence. Both have $1,000 starting bids.

The auction opens for bids on May 15.

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