Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

NASA Prepares For Performing New Science On The Moon

Date:
June 28, 2007
Source:
NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Summary:
NASA has selected proposals, including two from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., for future lunar science activities. In addition, the agency has established two new programs that will enhance research made possible by the Vision for Space Exploration. The proposals and programs are part of an effort by NASA to develop new opportunities to conduct important science investigations during the planned renewal of human exploration of the moon.

The moon, imaged by the Galileo spacecraft during its journey to Jupiter.
Credit: USGS

NASA has selected proposals, including two from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., for future lunar science activities. In addition, the agency has established two new programs that will enhance research made possible by the Vision for Space Exploration.

The proposals and programs are part of an effort by NASA to develop new opportunities to conduct important science investigations during the planned renewal of human exploration of the moon.

In a highly competitive selection, NASA chose seven proposals from more than 70 submissions under the Lunar Sortie Science Opportunities Program. These newly funded efforts in the space science community will complement two new programs established in the Science Mission Directorate's Planetary Sciences Division at NASA Headquarters in Washington: the Lunar Advanced Science and Exploration Research Program and the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Participating Scientist Program.

The seven selected proposals will result in advanced development for simple, autonomous instrument packages deployed on the lunar surface by astronauts. Such "suitcase science" packages could open up a wide variety of research applications regarding the moon and the lunar environment.

Some of the funded efforts will help scientists better understand the lunar dust that creates problems for astronauts on the moon. Other studies will provide a better understanding of the moon's interior, look for natural resources on the lunar surface and use lasers to provide precise information about the position of the moon and its features.

"The proposals we received show that the scientific community is excited about the opportunity to capitalize on the nation's planned lunar outpost. The moon has much to teach us about itself, the history of our solar system, and even the history of the sun. In the future, more and more scientists will be able to participate in lunar research as we focus attention on Earth's fascinating satellite," said Alan Stern, associate administrator for NASA's Science Mission Directorate.

The two selected proposals from JPL are:

  • "Autonomous Lunar Geophysical Experiment Package"--William Banerdt, principal investigator
  • "Lunar Laser Transponder and Retroreflector Science"--Slava Turyshev, principal investigator

The other selected proposals are:

  • Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md., "Volatile Analysis by Pyrolysis of Regolith on the Moon using Mass Spectrometry"-- Daniel Glavin, principal investigator
  • Goddard Space Flight Center, "Seismology and Heat flow instrument package for Lunar Science and Hazards"-- Patrick Taylor, principal investigator
  • Southwest Research Institute, Boulder, Colo., "Lunar Radiation Environment and Regolith Shielding Experiment"-- Donald Hassler, principal investigator
  • U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center, Fort Wainwright, Alaska, "Lunar Suitcase Science: A Lunar Regolith Characterization Kit" --Jerome Johnson, principal investigator
  • Ball Aerospace and Technologies Corp., Boulder, Colo., "Autonomous Lunar Dust Observer" -- Christian Grund, principal investigator

Under the planned Lunar Advanced Science and Exploration Research program, proposals will be solicited for investigations to increase knowledge of the moon while also providing necessary information for humans to live and work there. Studies may include simulations and laboratory work to better understand the lunar environment and its hazards, such as dust and radiation. The program also will support analysis of existing lunar data, including the Apollo and robotic mission data archives, and work to understand the origin and evolution of the moon.

In the upcoming Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Participating Scientist Program, NASA will select researchers to perform detailed investigations using instruments aboard the spacecraft during its first years in lunar orbit. Proposals for both programs are due Sept. 7, 2007.

Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter is NASA's next orbital mission to the moon. Launch is planned in late 2008. It will orbit the moon for at least one year, providing data to accelerate opportunities for future science missions and human exploration.

Details on NASA's lunar research programs are available at: http://www.nasa.gov/exploration


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. "NASA Prepares For Performing New Science On The Moon." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 June 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070627100902.htm>.
NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. (2007, June 28). NASA Prepares For Performing New Science On The Moon. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070627100902.htm
NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. "NASA Prepares For Performing New Science On The Moon." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070627100902.htm (accessed October 22, 2014).

Share This



More Space & Time News

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Comet Siding Spring Grazes Mars' Atmosphere

Comet Siding Spring Grazes Mars' Atmosphere

Newsy (Oct. 19, 2014) A comet from the farthest reaches of the solar system passed extremely close to Mars this weekend, giving astronomers a rare opportunity to study it. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Latin America Launches Communications Satellite

Latin America Launches Communications Satellite

AFP (Oct. 17, 2014) Argentina launches a home-built satellite, a first for Latin America. It will ride a French-made Ariane 5 rocket into orbit, and will provide cell phone, digital TV, Internet and data services to the lower half of South America. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
This Week @ NASA, October 17, 2014

This Week @ NASA, October 17, 2014

NASA (Oct. 17, 2014) Power spacewalk, MAVEN’s “First Light”, Hubble finds extremely distant galaxy and more... Video provided by NASA
Powered by NewsLook.com
Saturn's 'Death Star' Moon Might Have A Hidden Ocean

Saturn's 'Death Star' Moon Might Have A Hidden Ocean

Newsy (Oct. 17, 2014) The smallest of Saturn's main moons, Mimas, wobbles as it orbits. Research reveals it might be due to a global ocean underneath its icy surface. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins