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The NASA probe launched to the Moon. / June 19, 2009 /

From launch at Cape Canaveral launched a probe to explore the Moon Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO), is reported at the American Space Agency (NASA). Run the launcher Atlas V, on board which, in addition to LRO, there is another vehicle for exploration of the Moon — Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS), was made on 19 June at 01:32 Moscow time.

Lunar probe was launched nearly a half hour later than the scheduled time. As told AFP representatives of NASA, the delay was related to adverse weather conditions.

Note that NASA originally planned to launch the probe on June 17, but the start was postponed due to changes in the date of launch shuttle Endeavor. " Notably, the «Endeavor» in that day had not started due to leakage of liquid hydrogen from the external fuel tank. This has been a second unsuccessful attempt at shuttle launch this month — June 13 Launch «Endeavor» was also canceled for the same reason.

As conceived by NASA, machines will explore geology and mineralogy of natural satellite of Earth, a detailed three-dimensional maps of the lunar surface, as well as search of water ice deposits that might exist in lunar polar craters. In addition, LRO will explore the potential impact of space radiation on people and finding suitable sites for future settlement.

LRO and LCROSS for four months will be treated to the lunar orbit, after which a second device, along with stage Atlas V disconnect from LRO and falls on the lunar surface. Remaining in orbit LRO will oversee the process itself and the result of the fall.

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