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Supervisor
Elham AbolFateh
AR
Thursday 27 July 2017

Science & Technology

NASA just found lost spacecraft orbiting Moon

Saturday 11/March/2017 - 07:16 PM
Sada El Balad
Much like George Clooney in Gravity، sometimes، spacecrafts meet unfortunate fates—they get lost in space، and are almost always victims of the final frontier. But over the last few years، NASA has been having some real success locating wayward spacecraft، including its STEREO-B solar observer. The agency has now done it again، locating an Indian spacecraft that lost contact with the Earth nearly eight years ago.

Using a ground-based radar technique، scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena، California were able to locate NASA’s still-active Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO)، which launched in 2009، as well as the Indian Space Research Organization’s Chandrayaan-1، which blasted off Earth in 2008. The latter، which was much more difficult to find due to its small size (about 5 feet on each side)، had been considered lost.

“Finding LRO was relatively easy، as we were working with the mission’s navigators and had precise orbit data where it was located،” Marina Brozovic، a radar scientist at JPL said in a statement. “Finding India’s Chandrayaan-1 required a bit more detective work because the last contact with the spacecraft was in August of 2009.”
Much like George Clooney in Gravity، sometimes، spacecrafts meet unfortunate fates—they get lost in space، and are almost always victims of the final frontier. But over the last few years، NASA has been having some real success locating wayward spacecraft، including its STEREO-B solar observer. The agency has now done it again، locating an Indian spacecraft that lost contact with the Earth nearly eight years ago.

Using a ground-based radar technique، scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena، California were able to locate NASA’s still-active Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO)، which launched in 2009، as well as the Indian Space Research Organization’s Chandrayaan-1، which blasted off Earth in 2008. The latter، which was much more difficult to find due to its small size (about 5 feet on each side)، had been considered lost.

“Finding LRO was relatively easy، as we were working with the mission’s navigators and had precise orbit data where it was located،” Marina Brozovic، a radar scientist at JPL said in a statement. “Finding India’s Chandrayaan-1 required a bit more detective work because the last contact with the spacecraft was in August of 2009.”

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