Friday, July 03, 2009

LRO first Moon Pictures

LRO or Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter has taken its first pictures of the Moon on June 30. The first pictures were taken on the moon's terminator (line separating light and dark).
"Our first images were taken along the moon's terminator -- the dividing line between day and night -- making us initially unsure of how they would turn out," said LROC Principal Investigator Mark Robinson of Arizona State University in Tempe. "Because of the deep shadowing, subtle topography is exaggerated, suggesting a craggy and inhospitable surface. In reality, the area is similar to the region where the Apollo 16 astronauts safely explored in 1972. While these are magnificent in their own right, the main message is that LROC is nearly ready to begin its mission."

More pictures will come as LRO orbits around the Moon. It is in an elliptical polar orbit around the Moon and by next month its orbit will become circular about 31 miles above the Moons surface.

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