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08/11/2022 – Ephemeris – Another lunar mission in support of Artemis

August 11, 2022 Comments off

This is Ephemeris for Thursday, August 11th. Today the Sun will be up for 14 hours and 14 minutes, setting at 8:54, and it will rise tomorrow at 6:41. The Moon, at full today, the full Sturgeon Moon, and a supermoon to boot, will rise at 9:18 this evening.

As we await the opening of the Artemis 1 launch window in two and a half weeks, and a successful mission, Artemis 2 may launch as early as May of next year with a crew of four for a loop around the Moon on a free return trajectory back to the Earth. They will not stay in orbit of the Moon. South Korea’s Pathfinder Lunar Orbiter was launched a week ago on a long trajectory to reach the Moon in December. Among other things, it has a NASA supplied camera to photograph the floors of the permanently shadowed craters at the Moon’s South Pole, a prime target for the Artemis missions. The pace of lunar missions by NASA’s partners is increasing, looking to a crewed landing, possibly as early as 2025 or 2026.

The astronomical event times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan (EDT, UT – 4 hours). They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Korea Pathfinder Lunar Orbit "Danuri"

Artist’s vision of the Korea Pathfinder Lunar Orbiter “Danuri” communicating from the Moon. It has instruments to photograph the Moon, and otherwise detect resources. It also contains a NASA supplied ShadowCam. Credit: KARI, Korea Aerospace Research Institute.


ShadowCam operation

ShadowCam operation imaging the floors of permanently shadowed craters. The camera is 800 times more sensitive than those on the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. Credit NASA.