NASA to Launch CAPSTONE Mission Monday, June 27

NASA to Launch CAPSTONE Mission Monday, June 27
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Rocket Lab's Electron rocket sits atop the launch pad at Launch Complex 1 in New Zealand for a wet suit rehearsal before the CAPSTONE launch.

A small satellite is preparing to pave the way for something much bigger: a full-blown lunar space station. NASA’s CAPSTONE satellite is scheduled to launch on Monday and then travel to a unique lunar orbit on a pathfinding mission. Artemis programtrying to get humans back to the Moon this decade.

KAPTAŞI New Zealand is hitchhiking on Rocket Lab’s Electron rocket, which will take off from the private Launch Complex 1 company in Mahia. Rocket Lab made headlines in May using a helicopter to catch a falling booster rocket. The CAPSTONE launch is scheduled for June 27 at 6 ET, with the livestream starting an hour earlier. You can catch the action at the agency. Web site horse applicationOr you can watch the live stream below.

NASA Live: Official Broadcast of NASA TV

About a week into the CAPSTONE mission, the probe’s journey will be made available through NASAs. Eyes in the Solar System interactive real-time 3D data visualization.

The Cislunar Autonomous Positioning System Technology Operations and Navigation Experiment (CAPSTONE) mission will send a microwave-sized satellite into near-linear orbit (NRHO) around the Moon. The satellite will be the first to orbit this unique lunar orbit and test it for planned. Moon GateA small space station intended to allow a permanent human presence on the Moon.

NRHO is special in that it is where gravity from the Moon and Earth interact; this orbit would theoretically keep the spacecraft in a “gravity sweet spot” in a near-steady orbit around the Moon, by to NASA. NRHO is therefore ideal as it requires less fuel than conventional orbiters and allows the proposed lunar space station to maintain a stable line of communication with Earth. But before NASA builds the Gateway in this highly elliptical orbit, the space agency will use CAPSTONE, owned and operated by Colorado-based Advanced Space, to test orbital models.

Artist’s understanding of CAPSTONE.
gif: NASA / Daniel Rutter

Six days after launching from Earth, the Electron rocket’s upper stage will unleash the CAPSTONE satellite on its journey to the Moon. The 55-pound (25-pound) cubesat will then travel alone for the remainder of its four-month journey. Once CAPSTONE arrives on the Moon, it will test the orbital dynamics of its orbit for about six months. The satellite will also be used to test spacecraft-to-spacecraft navigation technology and one-way range capabilities that could reduce future spacecraft’s need to communicate with mission controllers on Earth and wait for signals to be transmitted from other spacecraft.

NASA regularly puts together the pieces for the agency’s planned return to the Moon. this The fourth and final wetsuit rehearsal of the space agency’s Space Launch System (SLS) went wellIt paves the way for a possible launch in late August.

sea: This Tiny Moon-bound Satellite Could Be a Pathway to the Lunar Space Station

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