Ever since humanity first started to become interested in the secrets of the universe, the moon has inspired many theories that challenged us to solve its mysteries. The Apollo missions were the most significant milestone when it comes to lunar surface exploration, but those missions happened decades ago. Who knows what might have changed during this time? Or maybe we have changed.
Maybe now we have more performant equipment that could help us explore the lunar surface and gather even more information that could answer some of our most burning questions about the celestial object, in preparing for the upcoming moon missions.
A few months ago, the Trump administration ordered NASA to gather all needed resources to complete new human-crewed lunar missions by 2024. Before NASA is ready to send humans to the moon again, the space agency needs to establish a more prominent robotic lunar presence first. This essential step can not be omitted.
NASA plans to map the lunar surface to prepare for the upcoming moon missions
Recently, NASA announced that a particular scientific instrument, called the Lunar Compact Infrared Imaging System (L-CIRIS), will soon be sent to the moon as a part of the Commercial Lunar Payload Services program. The instrument is the first of its kind, sporting a camera created with the aid of the CU Boulder and Ball Aerospace.
The camera will be accompanied by three robotic landers that will land on the moon sometime in the next several years. These are essential measures that need to be taken to prepare the space agency to send humans to the moon by 2024.
Paul Hayne, leader of the developer team of L-CIRIS, said that the primary goal of the mission is to collect data that can be used to create better maps of the lunar surface. For this matter, the team will use infrared technology, and it would better prepare the upcoming moon missions.
Chris Mcfadden is the lead editor for Swerd Media. Chris has written for several online publications including the Huffington Post, Vanity Fair and Bleacher Report. Chris is based in Los Angeles and covers issues affecting California. When he’s not busy writing, Chris enjoys traveling and hiking.