Friday, August 28, 2009

NASA's Lunar Impactor Loses Most of Its Fuel


NASA's moon-colliding probe LCROSS lost more than half its propellant late last week after a glitch caused it to repeatedly fire its thrusters to try to orient itself. But the spacecraft is still on track to complete its mission to slam into the moon's south pole in October.

The Lunar CRater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) took off on 18 June and has been orbiting the Earth at about the moon's distance in preparation for a lunar collision on 9 October. NASA hopes the impact will excavate material from one of the moon's permanently shadowed craters, which could be rich in water that could supply future lunar outposts.

Click the image to read the rest of this story as it appears on the NewScientist website.

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