Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter will Map the Moon’s Surface for Manned Missions

Set to launch in June, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) and the Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite, or LCROSS, will collect data about the moon in support of future manned missions.

NASA gives an overview of the mission,

Using a suite of seven instruments, LRO will help identify safe landing sites for future human explorers, locate potential resources, characterize the radiation environment and test new technology. LCROSS will seek a definitive answer about the presence of water ice at the lunar poles. LCROSS will use the spent second stage Atlas Centaur rocket in an unprecedented way that will culminate with two spectacular impacts on the moon’s surface.

Below are animations of how the journey to the moon and how the LRO will analyze Luna’s surface.


Here’s another one on how the LRO will orbit the moon and scan the lunar surface. It is amazing how much the orbiter will be able to scan in so little time

More on LRO

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