LunarA penetrators

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

Payload experiments

Delivery architecture Thermal aspects Power aspects Communications architecture EDL architecture

Landing speed(s) Active operations

(deployments, etc.) Key references

The Moon

Lunar seismology and heat flow measurements



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

• Seismometer

• T & thermal conductivity sensors

• Accelerometry

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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