Space: 1999 was a British science-fiction television series that ran for two seasons and originally aired from 1975 to 1977. In the opening episode, set on 13 September 1999, nuclear waste stored on the Moon's far side explodes, knocking the Moon out of orbit and sending it, as well as the 311 inhabitants of Moonbase Alpha, hurtling uncontrollably into space. The series was the last production by the partnership of Gerry and Sylvia Anderson and was the most expensive series produced for British television up to that time. The first season was co-produced by the British television ITC and the Italian television RAI, while the second season was only produced by ITC. Space 1999 information provide by Wikipedia



     SPACE 1999 was produced in two series, each comprising twenty-four episodes. The first series was produced from November 1973 to February 1975; the second series was produced from January 1976 to December 1976.

     The premise of Space: 1999 centers on the plight of the inhabitants of Moonbase Alpha, Earth's Space Research Centre on the Moon, following a scientific cataclysm. 

     Humanity had been storing its nuclear waste in vast disposal sites on the far side of the Moon. Prefaced by wild emissions of an unknown form of electromagnetic radiation, the accumulated waste reaches critical mass and, on 13 September 1999, detonates in a massive thermonuclear explosion. The force of the blast propels the Moon like an enormous booster rocket, hurling it out of Earth orbit and into deep space at colossal speed, thus stranding the 311 personnel stationed on Alpha. 

    The runaway Moon, in effect, becomes the "spacecraft" on which the protagonists travel, searching for a new home. During their interstellar journey, the Alphans encounter an array of alien civilizations, dystopian societies, and mind-bending phenomena previously unseen by humanity. Several episodes of the first series hinted that the Moon's journey was influenced (and perhaps initiated) by a "mysterious unknown force", which was guiding the Alphans toward an ultimate destiny. 

     The second series used more simplified "action-oriented" plots.






     SPACE 1999 CAST 

Actor Role Appearances
Barbara Bain Doctor Helena Russell, head of Medical Section (48 episodes, 197577)
Martin Landau Commander John Koenig, leader of Moonbase Alpha (47 episodes, 197577)
Nick Tate Alan Carter, third in command, chief pilot (45 episodes, 197577)
Zienia Merton Sandra Benes, data analyst (37 episodes, 197577)
Anton Phillips Doctor Bob Mathias, Helena's deputy (24 episodes, 197576)
Barry Morse Professor Victor Bergman, science adviser (Year One only) (24 episodes, 197576)
Catherine Schell Maya, science officer (Year Two only) (24 episodes, 197677)
Prentis Hancock Paul Morrow, base second in command and Main Mission controller (Year One only) (23 episodes, 197576)
Clifton Jones David Kano, computer operations officer (Year One only) (23 episodes, 197576)
Tony Anholt Tony Verdeschi, second in command, head of Security and Command Centre controller (Year Two only) (23 episodes, 197677)
Suzanne Roquette Tanya Alexander, base operations officer (Year One only) (19 episodes, 197576)
John Hug Bill Fraser, Eagle pilot (Year Two only) (9 episodes, 197677)
Jeffery Kissoon Doctor Ben Vincent, deputy medical officer (Year Two only) (7 episodes, 197677)












Production of Space 1999  

Space: 1999 is the last in a long line of science-fiction series that Gerry and Sylvia Anderson produced as a working partnership, beginning with Supercar in the early 1960s and including the famed marionette fantasy series Fireball XL5, Stingray, Thunderbirds, Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons, Joe 90 and The Secret Service, as well as the live-action alien-invasion drama UFO. Space: 1999 owes much of the visual design to pre-production work for the never-made second series of UFO, which would have been set primarily on the Moon and featured a more extensive Moonbase.

Space: 1999 drew a great deal of visual inspiration (and technical expertise) from the Stanley Kubrick film 2001: A Space Odyssey. The programme's special effects director Brian Johnson had previously worked on both Thunderbirds (as Brian Johncock) and 2001.

In 1972, Sir Lew Grade, head of ITC Entertainment, proposed financing a second series of the Century 21 production UFO to show-runners Gerry and Sylvia Anderson. Grade had one stipulation: the new series would be set primarily on the Moon within the environs of an expanded SHADO Moonbase; the ratings indicated the Moon-centric episodes had proved more popular with the viewers. The Andersons and their team would quickly revamp the production, flashing ahead nearly twenty years for UFO: 1999 with Commander Ed Straker and the forces of SHADO fighting their alien foes from a large new Moonbase facility.

However, toward the end of its run, UFO experienced a drop in ratings in both America and the UK; nervous ITC executives in both countries began to question the financial viability of the new series, and support for the project collapsed. In the meantime, Production Designer Keith Wilson and the art department had made considerable progress in envisioning the look and design of the new series. Their work was then shelved for the foreseeable future.

Anderson would not let the project die; he approached Grade's number two in New York, Abe Mandell, with the proposal for taking the research and development done for UFO: 1999 and creating a new science fiction series. Mandell was amenable, but stated he did not want a series set featuring people "having tea in the Midlands" and forbade any Earth-bound settings. Anderson responded that in the series opener, he would "blow up the Earth". Mandell countered that this concept might be off-putting to viewers, to which Anderson replied he would "blow up the Moon".


     The Eagle Transporter is a fictional spacecraft seen in the 1970s British television series Space: 1999. The Eagles serve as the primary spacecraft of Moonbase Alpha, which has a fleet of them, and are often used to explore alien planets, defend Moonbase Alpha from attack, and to transport supplies and other items to and from the Moon. The Eagle was designed by Brian Johnson who had worked with Gerry Anderson on Thunderbirds in the mid-60s and had produced the spacecraft for the 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey. The Eagle spacecraft influenced the spaceship designs of Star Wars and other science fiction films and television series.




     The Eagles are constructed by the engineering and technical section of Moonbase Alpha using materials and components either shipped from Earth or manufactured on the Moon. The latter is usually proposed as a rationale for the perceived seemingly endless supply of Eagles despite their frequent losses. At the time of the episode "The Last Sunset", dialogue indicated that there were twenty- eight serviceable Eagles on the roster.  


     The Eagles are completely modular, they are divided into three basic sections: the command module, passenger module/service pod, and the superstructure (containing the landing gear, access corridor/galley, aft compartment, fuel tanks and main propulsion system). 

     The command module also has an escape hatch as revealed in the episode "Devil's Planet", although it is unknown whether this is an original design feature or an adaptation that was designed by Moonbase Alpha. The Eagle's command module is also able to detach from the main body as seen in the episode "Dragon's Domain" enabling it to dock with another compatible craft or for use as an emergency escape capsule. All Eagles are equipped with artificial gravity.




    The Eagles are powered by four nuclear fusion rockets and carry fuel reserves for 48 hours (2 days) of flight. Artificial gravity force fields built into the Eagle enable it to accelerate up to 15% of the speed of light, giving it a maximum range (with extra fuel reserves) of several light days. (At 15% of the speed of light, an Eagle would need nearly 7 days to traverse a distance of one light day.) Should there be a need for higher- than- normal velocities, a set of two booster rockets can be fitted to the superstructure to augment the main propulsion system. Under ideal conditions, re-fuelling is carried out in the maintenance hangar at Moonbase; under extraordinary circumstances, provisions for in-flight fuelling are possible.

     The Eagle also has the capability to enter the atmosphere of a normal-gravity planetary body, land using its chemically fuelled landing rockets, and take off and return to Moonbase Alpha. The Eagle maintains sufficient fuel for multiple take-offs and landings. Should the craft be required to operate within meta-gravity conditions (take-offs and landings from a high-gravity spatial body), the craft can be equipped with four downward-pointing booster rockets to augment the normal vertical rockets on the craft's undercarriage.

     The on-board computer system can handle guidance, astro-navigation, and interpretation of sensor data; for comprehensive data analysis, telemetry is transmitted to Moonbase Main Computer. The craft can also be flown by remote control from Moonbase Alpha.










     Although the Eagle was not designed for use as a military vessel, some Eagles on Moonbase Alpha are fitted with a laser emitter as standard equipment and an arsenal of space-to-space missiles. The episode "War Games" suggests that only seven of Alpha's many Eagles are armed at that time. It is demonstrated in the series that Eagles were primarily designed for transport, reconnaissance and scientific surveys. In "War Games" the Eagles are badly outmatched by the Mark IX Hawk, which were designed specifically for combat. The Hawks were faster, more maneuverable, and better-armed than the Eagles, although a skilled Eagle pilot such as Alan Carter was still able to destroy several Hawks in the battle to defend Moonbase Alpha.

     In addition to the primary weapons mounted on the underside of the Eagle superstructure frame (directly behind the command module) intended for combat or defense when in flight, a retractable laser gun was revealed in Year Two for use when the craft is grounded.[9] This mid-size weapon was mounted on the dorsal surface of the space-frame and emerged from the girders of the ship's 'backbone'. It can be adjusted to fire in 360 degrees and at numerous angles of elevation. Various pods also carry small arms; a rack of stun-guns and a single laser rifle for the use of crew is mounted by one of the two main hatches.





     Primarily a scientific research station, at the start of the series, Moonbase Alpha houses 311 personnel including scientists, astronauts, medical personnel, and security officers. It is under the command of John Koenig. Four kilometers wide and up to one kilometer deep, it is a totally self-sustaining facility, with the different areas connected by a series of high speed "travel tubes". Alpha also has a fleet of Eagle Transporter spaceships, used for a variety of purposes throughout the series, which are housed in underground bunkers and then raised on launch pads for take-off.

     Located in the Moon crater Plato and constructed out of quarried rock and ores, Moonbase Alpha is four kilometres in diameter and extends up to one kilometre in areas below the lunar surface.[2] The complex extends outward from the central Main Mission tower in a series of concentrically arranged curved structures connected by travel-tube transit tunnels. (The look is more than reminiscent of Clavius Base in the film 2001: A Space Odyssey.) Apart from the central tower, the surface buildings are two to three storeys in height.

      Originally, the base was designed to serve as both Earth's primary space research and exploration centre and a monitoring station coordinating the nuclear waste disposal areas on the Moon's far side. Construction began on 3 February 1983, but was briefly halted during the 1987 world war. Construction commenced afterwards under the auspices of the new World Space Commission. Though operational and occupied for years, final completion of the Alpha construction project occurred in 1997.

     Moonbase Alpha is totally self-sustaining. Power is generated by four nuclear reactors and the accumulation of solar energy. Earth-normal artificial gravity is generated by eight towers surrounding the complex. Water is obtained from ice deposits under the lunar surface, recycled and purified. Nutritional requirements are met by a variety of familiar-appearing foodstuffs produced biochemically on Alpha  This diet was supplemented by frozen-food products imported from Earth  before all contact with home was severed in September 1999. (At the time of "Breakaway", about eighty percent of food and water products were produced chemically on Moonbase.)





















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