Space & Planetary Science: November 2020 Archives

Keith's note: China has launched its Change'e-5 mission to return samples from the Moon. The launch aboard a Long March 5 rocket went off as planned and the spacecraft is now on its way out of Earth orbit and heading toward the Moon. Change'e-5 will land on 27 November, drill 2 meters into the lunar surface, and collect 2 kg of samples for return to Earth. The landing site is a volcanic feature in the Ocean of Storms. As such these samples could teach us how long the Moon was active after its formation, what its magnetic field was like, and what the interior may be like today. The samples are due to be returned to Earth on 16-17 December. Many nations are participating in the scientific analysis of the samples including U.S. researchers.

I am scheduled to be on Deutsche Welle TV at 4:00 and 6:00 pm and on CGTN at 8:30 Pm today to talk about this mission.


Mars Sample Return Update

NASA-ESA Mars Sample Return Independent Review Board Report

"Mars Sample Return (MSR) is a highly complex and ambitious program of national importance. As noted by the MSR Independent Review Board (IRB), it is one of the most technically difficult and operationally demanding robotic space missions ever undertaken. The MSR IRB's nonconsensus report highlights this complexity and importance in laying out their observations, findings, and recommendations. The IRB recommends that NASA proceed with this important program and their detailed recommendations will inform the decisions we make moving forward to maximize MSR's success."


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This page is an archive of entries in the Space & Planetary Science category from November 2020.

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