Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Those Moon Rocks Gonna Get Blowed Up Good. Yeah, Get Blowed Up Real Good

The new mission has two components: An impactor will slam into the moon’s South Pole, sending up a massive plume of lunar dust almost 40 miles high. Meanwhile, an orbiting satellite will fly through the plume, sampling the ejected debris for water vapor, a sign of ice. Then the satellite will itself impact the lunar surface in a separate area, sending up another plume for analysis by the LRO and Earth based observatories. “This mission will generate a huge amount of data,” said Scott Horowitz, assistant administrator for NASA’s Exploration Directorate. “It’ll generate quite a few PhD theses."

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