Serious Science Begins For GRAIL Mission | Aero-News Network
Aero-News Network
RSS icon RSS feed
podcast icon MP3 podcast
Subscribe Aero-News e-mail Newsletter Subscribe

Airborne Unlimited -- Recent Daily Episodes

Episode Date

Airborne Unlimited-
Monday

Airborne-Unmanned w/AUVSI-
Tuesday

Airborne Unlimited-
Wednesday

AMA Drone Report-
Thursday

Airborne Unlimited-
Friday

Airborne On ANN

Airborne 02.12.18

Airborne-UnManned 02.13.18

Airborne 02.14.18

AMA Drone Report 02.15.18

Airborne 02.16.18

Airborne-YouTube

Airborne 02.12.18

Airborne-UnManned 02.13.18

Airborne 02.14.18

AMA Drone Report 02.15.18

Airborne 02.16.18

Thu, Mar 08, 2012

Serious Science Begins For GRAIL Mission

Lunar Satellites Will Assemble Hi-Res Map Over The Next 84 Days

NASA's Gravity Recovery And Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) spacecraft orbiting the moon officially have begun their science collection phase. During the next 84 days, scientists will obtain a high-resolution map of the lunar gravitational field to learn about the moon's internal structure and composition in unprecedented detail. The data also will provide a better understanding of how Earth and other rocky planets in the solar system formed and evolved.

"The initiation of science data collection is a time when the team lets out a collective sigh of relief because we are finally doing what we came to do," said Maria Zuber, principal investigator for the GRAIL mission at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge. "But it is also a time where we have to put the coffee pot on, roll up our sleeves and get to work."

The GRAIL mission's twin, washing-machine-sized spacecraft, named Ebb and Flow, entered lunar orbit on New Year's Eve and New Years Day. GRAIL's science phase began Tuesday. During this mission phase, the spacecraft will transmit radio signals precisely defining the distance between them. As they fly over areas of greater and lesser gravity caused by visible features such as mountains, craters and masses hidden beneath the lunar surface, the distance between the two spacecraft will change slightly. Science activities are expected to conclude on May 29, after GRAIL maps the gravity field of the moon three times.

"We are in a near-polar, near-circular orbit with an average altitude of about 34 miles right now," said David Lehman, GRAIL project manager from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, CA. "During the science phase, our spacecraft will orbit the moon as high as 31 miles and as low as 10 miles. They will get as close to each other as 40 miles and as far apart as 140 miles."

FMI: www.nasa.gov/grail

Advertisement

More News

Airborne-Unmanned 02.13.18: FAA UAS Symposium, Airbus Delivers, Manned EHANG 184

Also: UAS Pilot Code, FAA Drone Program, SkyWatch Funding, Quantix Hybrid UAS For Farmers The FAA and AUVSI will co-host the 3rd Annual FAA Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Symposiu>[...]

AMA Drone Report 02.15.18: AMA Expo East, Skydio R1, TSB Canada Report

Also: DJI Knowledge Quiz, GoFly Competition, Drone ID Rules Coming, FAA Unenthusiastic About Prosecuting? The Academy of Model Aeronautics will host the annual AMA Expo East at the>[...]

Airborne 02.14.18: PC-24 Delivered!, Another Icon Sinks, Replica Apollo Computer

Also: LEAP Engine, Gogo AVANCE L3, DC Small Aircraft Detection, 2017 Airline Bumping Rate In a ceremony held at Pilatus Business Aircraft Ltd in Broomfield, CO, the first productio>[...]

Airborne 02.16.18: R66 Wire-Strike Protection, Elk v Helo, Trump Budget

Also: Red Bull Picks Hartzell, SNC Dream Chaser, CH-53K Demo's Vehicle Lift, Emirates Firms Up A380 Orders Robinson has added wire strike protection provisions to its R66 options l>[...]

Airborne 02.16.18: R66 Wire-Strike Protection, Elk v Helo, Trump Budget

Also: Red Bull Picks Hartzell, SNC Dream Chaser, CH-53K Demo's Vehicle Lift, Emirates Firms Up A380 Orders Robinson has added wire strike protection provisions to its R66 options l>[...]

blog comments powered by Disqus



Advertisement

Advertisement

Podcasts

Advertisement

© 2007 - 2018 Web Development & Design by Pauli Systems, LC