Articles for "Moon"

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Space | 28. February 2024 | posted by Matthias Grott

German instrument to study Moon's eternal shadows with private mission

Aufnahme der Landestelle des Landers der IM-1-Mission
Credit: NASA/Goddard/Arizona State University
The landing site of the IM-1 lunar lander, between craters Malapert A and Malapert C. The image was acquired by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC) on board the NASA mission of the same name and covers an area of just under one square kilometre.

On 22 February 2024, the US 'New Space' company Intuitive Machines became the first private company to land on the Moon with its IM-1 Odysseus mission. The landing site is located around 800 kilometres north of the lunar South Pole, east of the Malapert A crater. According to Intuitive Machines, the landing took place just 1500 metres from the intended landing site, meaning that Odysseus is located in the south of the South Pole-Aitken impact basin which measures over 2000 kilometres in diameter. The exact landing coordinates are 80.13 degrees South and 1.44 degrees East. The lander is on a surface at an incline of 12 degrees and topographical height of 2579 metres above the reference 'selenoid' – a modelled 'lunar surface' with identical gravitational pull. read more

Space | 03. December 2020 | posted by Ulrich Köhler

Sample return - first class spaceflight

Credit: DLR (CC-BY 3.0)
Separation of the sample capsule on 5 December 2020, during the return to Earth of the Japanese spacecraft Hayabusa2 (artist's impression).

If there is one industry or scientific discipline in 2020 in which the infamous coronavirus pandemic has left relatively few traces, it is space exploration. Everything rises and falls; Newton and Kepler send their regards. There is simply no way around it. When expensive metal boxes are in orbit around Earth or out in the depths of the Solar System, with or without valuable human passengers, someone on the ground has to make sure that the mission continues. For obvious reasons, control of it must not simply be given up, as in most cases this would lead to the total loss of the very valuable spacecraft. read more

Space | 08. March 2012 | posted by Rolf Hempel

Looking for tracks on the Moon

As a lunar observer, I am repeatedly asked whether the tracks of the six Apollo missions can be seen through a telescope. After all, the descent stages of the lunar modules, three lunar rovers and a lot of scientific equipment were left behind there. Unfortunately, this is impossible even with the largest ground-based telescopes. But on the Internet, it is possible for everyone to go out and explore. read more

Space | 28. April 2011 | posted by Rolf Hempel

Is the Moon unchanging?

Mond TLP

Ever since the discovery of the telescope, man has been fascinated by the observation of the surface of the Moon. The constantly changing light coming from the Sun causes craters, mountains, valleys and plains to take on continuously varying appearances. Yet, as we look at this atmosphereless natural satellite, we get the impression that the Moon has not changed, even over the span of a human lifetime. But is this really the case? read more

Space | 25. March 2011 | posted by Rolf Hempel

Biggest full Moon in over 18 years

On 19 March 2011 everything came together perfectly – in a completely clear sky there was a full Moon and, what is more, at almost the exact time, the Moon passed through the point of closest approach to Earth on its elliptical orbit. This meant we were able to admire an unusually large and bright full Moon. Not wanting to let this opportunity pass, I photographed the Moon through my telescope. read more

Space | 26. August 2010 | posted by Rolf Hempel

Walking on the Moon – by telescope

We have all seen the images of the first manned Moon landing in 1969 often enough on the TV and remember the pictures of the lunar surface taken from orbit or from the landing site itself. But how much of all this can be seen with a telescope? And just where is the landing site? Here is a travel guide with a very special destination. read more

Space | 26. March 2010 | posted by Jan Wörner

The fourth man on the Moon — an experience that lasts forever

Alan Bean, Gasometer Oberhausen

On 24 March 2010, Alan Bean, the fourth man to walk on the Moon as part of the Apollo programme, visited the Gasometer in Oberhausen. Apart from the personal encounter (it was my third meeting with an Apollo astronaut, and they have always impressed me), I had the chance to be in the presence of an enthusiastic and motivating witness to an incredible pioneering feat, someone whose lecture revealed far more than a just report of an extraordinary mission. read more