The Lunar-A project was originally intended for launch in the late 1990s, carrying two (originally three) penetrators for lunar seismology. However, the mission has been subject to multiple delays; at the time of writing no new launch date has been set (Figure 19.3).
Target Objectives Prime contractor Launch site, vehicle Launch date Arrival date Landing site co-ordinates
Delivery architecture Thermal aspects Power aspects Communications architecture EDL architecture
Landing speed(s) Active operations
(deployments, etc.) Key references
Lunar seismology and heat flow measurements
ISAS/JAXA + NTS
Undetermined year after launch One penetrator will be targeted in the vicinity of the Apollo 12 and 14 landing sites on the lunar near-side, with the other aimed close to the antipodal point on the far side Each penetrator has a battery life of approximately 1 year Each penetrator has a mass of 14 kg, plus ^31kg for deorbit and attitude control
• T & thermal conductivity sensors
The Project Scientist is Hitoshi Mizutani (retired) Separation from Lunar-A orbiter after orbit insertion. Deorbit Passive thermal control (protected underground by regolith) LiSOCl2 primary batteries Two-way relay via Lunar-A orbiter
Rhumb-line manoeuvre; separation of de-orbit motor/attitude control stage; impact penetration 285 ms— 1 (planned) None
Mizutani et al, 2001, 2003
Figure 19.3 Lunar-A Penetrators.
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