This image shows the final flight path for NASA's twin Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) mission spacecraft, which will impact the moon on Dec. 17, 2012, around 2:28 p.m. PST.
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Last Flight for GRAIL's Twin Spacecraft

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This still image and animation show the final flight path for NASA's twin Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) mission spacecraft, which will impact the moon on Dec. 17, 2012, around 2:28 p.m. PST. Their successful prime and extended science missions now completed, the twin GRAIL spacecraft Ebb and Flow are being sent purposefully into the moon because their low orbit and fuel state precludes further scientific operations.

The animations were created from data obtained by NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter.

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., manages the GRAIL mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, is home to the mission's principal investigator, Maria Zuber. GRAIL is part of the Discovery Program managed at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. Lockheed Martin Space Systems in Denver built the spacecraft. The California Institute of Technology in Pasadena manages JPL for NASA.

For more information about GRAIL, please visit http://grail.nasa.gov.

Image details

ID#:
PIA16492

Date added:
2012-12-13

Target:
Moon

Mission:
Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL), Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO)

Spacecraft:
GRAIL, Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter

Rating:



Views:
2,674

Full-Res TIFF:
PIA16492.tif (0.92 MB)

Full-Res JPG:
PIA16492.jpg (0.12 MB)

Image credit:
NASA/JPL-Caltech/GSFC/ASU