Tag Archives: Moon

NASA Reveals Wild Project For Turning a Moon Crater Into a Radio Telescope

by David Nield, ScienceAlert

NASA just gave out a new round of grants for its favourite up and coming innovative space projects – one of which is a plan to fit a 1 kilometre (3,281 foot) radio telescope inside a crater on the far side of the Moon.

The Lunar Crater Radio Telescope (LCRT) would be able to measure wavelengths and frequencies that can’t be detected from Earth, working unobstructed by the ionosphere or the various other bits of radio noise surrounding our planet.

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Earth’s Mini-Moon Has Stopped Orbiting And Started Chasing Our Planet Instead

by Eric Mack, Forbes

For a short time, our planet was orbited by a second, tiny natural satellite. But now one veteran observer says that Asteroid 2020 CD3 has been “tossed back into orbit around the sun” and is tailing us on our annual journey around our star.

The small asteroid is probably only about the size of a large appliance or a compact car and it was first spotted in February, but astronomers think it was probably stuck in orbit around Earth for at least a year, if not longer.

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These two tiny spacecraft will help pave the way for astronauts to return to the moon

by Elizabeth Howell, Space.com

If NASA astronauts land on the moon as planned in 2024, they’ll have an advantage their Apollo predecessors lacked: insights gathered by tiny robotic spacecraft that visit the moon before them.

NASA has announced the first two such projects selected to fly as part of the Artemis program to land astronauts on the moon: Lunar Flashlight and the Cislunar Autonomous Positioning System Technology Operations and Navigation Experiment (CAPSTONE). The missions represent the next step for the small spacecraft, known as cubesats, which became available for Earth orbit in the 1990s as electronics and sensors shrank to allow bread-box-sized (or slightly larger) satellites to perform scientific work. Since then, cubesats have become so powerful that they are used regularly for Earth observations. And the first interplanetary cubesats successfully flew to Mars in 2018 with the NASA InSight mission, so the spacecraft are becoming hardy enough for deep-space missions.

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How the moon formed – new research

by Christian Schroeder, The Conversation

How the Earth got its moon is a long debated question. The giant impact theory – which states that the Moon formed from the a collision between the early Earth and a rocky body called Theia – has become the front runner among the explanations. But the details around how this happened are blurry and there are many observations that scientists are still struggling to explain.

Now a new study, published in Nature Geoscience, has shed light on what actually happened by solving one of the biggest mysteries surrounding the crash – why the Moon ended up being nearly identical to Earth, rather than Theia, assuming she existed.

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Pentagon Preps Nuclear Moon Rocket

by David Axe, Daily Beast

The U.S. government is working on an atomic rocket to send satellites into the vast space between Earth and the moon—before Beijing gets there with its own spacecraft.

The Pentagon wants to extend the reach of its satellites tens of thousands miles toward the moon. And it’s working on a high-tech, atomic-powered “nuclear thermal propulsion” engine to make it possible.

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