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Friday, October 09, 2009

NASA's Moon Bomb a Bust

We first heard about NASA's plan to bomb the moon back in February of 2008. No, there weren't any intelligence reports of hidden WMD. The object of the mission was to slam a probe into a permanently shadowed region of the lunar surface in order to kick up enough dust that could then be analyzed to see if water ice might be present. (Can you think of a better way to spend our tax dollars?)

If that wasn't exciting enough, we were even going to get to see live photos of the event! But that didn't pan out exactly as NASA scientists had hoped.

Here's an update from the AP:
    First a 2.2-ton empty rocket hull smacked the moon's south pole at 7:31 a.m. EDT Friday. Then four minutes later the camera-and-instrument laden space probe made its death plunge.

    The smaller probe had five cameras and four other scientific instruments and NASA had touted live photos on its web site. But those images didn't occur. NASA officials say they are sure the two probes crashed and looking to see what happened to the pictures. Pictures were live until seconds before impact.

Oh, sure. They can land a man on the moon...

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