Now in orbit around the moon, NASA's newest lunar mission has completed the commissioning phase, and its science instruments have passed their preliminary checks.
"This is very promising for LADEE's science phase - we are already seeing the shape of things to come," said Rick Elphic, LADEE project scientist at NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., the center that is managing the mission.
The mission's commissioning phase lasted roughly one month, a period in which the spacecraft remained in a high-altitude preliminary orbit and the instruments were turned on, checked and calibrated.
All three science instruments are in good health, according to the mission's payloads manager, Robert Caffrey at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. "The sensitivity of the instruments is very high, and we are looking forward to an exciting science phase!"
A team of UMass Lowell robotics undergraduate and graduate students, called the "Rover Hawks," beat seven other teams from nine universities from across the country to take home the top prize in an engineering contest sponsored by NASA and organized by the National Institute of Aerospace.
As you may have noticed there is now a Twitter feed on the right side of the Robotic Alliance Project's webpage! We would like to invite everyone to follow us on twitter and help spread the word about the Robotics Alliance Project and NASA! We plan on using Twitter to post about announcements, new features, and much more!