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GRAIL

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NASA's Grail Mission Solves Mystery of Moon's Surface Gravity

Variations in the lunar gravity field as measured by GRAIL. Credits: NASA

[NASA Press Release - 30.05.2013]
NASA's Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) mission has uncovered the origin of massive invisible regions that make the moon's gravity uneven, a phenomenon that affects the operations of lunar-orbiting spacecraft.

Because of GRAIL's findings, spacecraft on missions to other celestial bodies can navigate with greater precision in the future.

NASA's GRAIL Lunar Impact Site Named for Astronaut Sally Ride

Grail impact trajectory. Credits: NASA

[NASA Press Release - 17.12.2012]
NASA has named the site where twin agency spacecraft impacted the moon Monday in honor of the late astronaut Sally K. Ride, who was America's first woman in space and a member of the probes' mission team.

NASA to Provide Dec. 17 Commentary as Twin Probes End Lunar Mission

Grail impact trajectory. Credits: NASA

[NASA Press Release - 14.12.2012]
NASA will provide live commentary of the scheduled lunar surface impacts of its twin Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) spacecraft beginning at 2 p.m. PST (5 p.m. EST) Monday, Dec. 17. The event will be broadcast on NASA Television and streamed on the agency's website.

Twin NASA Probes Prepare for Dec. 17 Mission-Ending Moon Impact

First image of the lunar surface by LRO. Credits: NASA

[NASA Press Release - 13.12.2012]
Twin lunar-orbiting NASA spacecraft that have allowed scientists to learn more about the internal structure and composition of the moon are being prepared for their controlled descent and impact on a mountain near the moon's north pole at about
2:28 p.m. PST (5:28 p.m. EST) Monday, Dec. 17.

NASA to Host Dec.13 Teleconference on Twin Probes Mission Ending Moon Impact

An artist’s depiction of the twin spacecraft (Ebb and Flow) that comprise NASA’s GRAIL mission. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MIT

[NASA Press Release - 10.12.2012]
NASA will host a media teleconference at 10:30 a.m. PST (1:30 p.m. EST) Thursday, Dec. 13, to provide an overview of events leading up to twin spacecraft being commanded to impact the moon's surface on Dec. 17 at approximately 2:28 p.m.

NASA Twin Spacecraft Create Most Accurate Gravity Map of Moon

Variations in the lunar gravity field as measured by GRAIL. Credits: NASA

[NASA Press Release - 12.05.2012]
Twin NASA probes orbiting the moon have generated the highest resolution gravity field map of any celestial body.

The new map, created by the Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory

NASA Lunar Spacecraft Complete Prime Mission Ahead of Schedule

An artist’s depiction of the twin spacecraft (Ebb and Flow) that comprise NASA’s GRAIL mission. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MIT

[NASA Press Release - 29.05.2012]A NASA mission to study the moon from crust to core has completed its prime mission earlier than expected. The mission team of NASA's Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) mission, with twin probes named Ebb and Flow, is now preparing for extended science operations starting Aug. 30 and continuing through Dec. 3, 2012.

NASA Invites 150 Lucky Twitter Followers to Launch of Lunar Spacecraft

Grail launch tweetup logo. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech

[NASA Press Release - 01.09.2011]
NASA has invited 150 followers of the agency's Twitter account to a two-day launch Tweetup Sept. 7-8. The Tweetup is expected to culminate in the launch of the twin lunar-bound GRAIL spacecraft aboard a Delta II rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

Who's Orbiting the Moon?

Earth-rise seen from Kaguya. Credits: JAXA/NHK

[NASA Press Release - 22.02.2008]
The space around Earth is a busy place, as teeming with traffic as a roundabout. More than 500 active satellites are bustling about up there right now. Some are transmitting radio, television, and telephone signals; others are gathering information about Earth's atmosphere and weather; still others are helping people navigate down here; and the rest are conducting space research.

New NASA Mission to Reveal Moon's Internal Structure and Evolution

[NASA Press Release - 11.12.07]At a Monday meeting of the American Geophysical Union, NASA's Associate Administrator for Science Alan Stern announced the selection of a new mission that will peer deep inside the moon to reveal its anatomy and history.

The Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory, or GRAIL, mission is a part of NASA's Discovery Program. It will cost $375 million and is scheduled to launch in 2011. GRAIL will fly twin spacecraft in tandem orbits around the moon for several months to measure its gravity field in unprecedented detail. The mission also will answer longstanding questions about Earth's moon and provide scientists a better understanding of how Earth and other rocky planets in the solar system formed.

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