Show Details

Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter

July 20, 2009

NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter will send back unprecedented information about our closest cosmic neighbor.

Transcript

BOB HIRSHON (host):
Exploring the moon. I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

Forty years after Apollo 11 first landed on the moon, NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter promises to usher in a new generation of lunar science and exploration. Noah Petro is a lunar geologist at NASA’s Goddard Spaceflight Center. He says the orbiter’s precision lasers will map the topography of the moon. High-resolution cameras will take extremely detailed photographs, and other instruments will measure the chemical abundance of various elements.

NOAH PETRO (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center):
One of the most important elements that we’re looking for is hydrogen, in hopes of finding water at the poles of the moon. For a long time, it was thought that the moon was bone dry. Well, it turns out, there may be more water than we had ever anticipated.

HIRSHON:
He says finding water on the moon would make it much easier to one day sustain research stations on the moon. I’m Bob Hirshon, for AAAS, the science society.