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NASA Grail Moon Probe mission to carry special cameras for kids

NASA are launching a robotic mission to the Moon today and they will be including special cameras to photograph areas of the lunar surface, as requested by students and teachers.

The Grail Moon probe missions is formed around twin spacecraft named Grail A and Grail B. According to website space.com “The cameras are a perk for students following the Grail mission, which is aimed at exploring the interior of the moon and building the most precise lunar gravity maps to date. The twin spacecraft are slated to launch today at 8:37 a.m. EDT (1237 GMT) from Florida’s Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.”

Using a precision formation-flying technique, the twin Grail spacecraft will map the moon's gravity field, as depicted in this artist's rendering. Radio signals traveling between the two spacecraft provide scientists the exact measurements required as well as flow of information not interrupted when the spacecraft are at the lunar farside, not seen from Earth. The result should be the most accurate gravity map of the moon ever made. CREDIT: NASA

They add “Using the context of lunar exploration, using gravitational experiments, MoonKAM will serve as eyes on the moon for students,” Leesa Hubbard, a teacher-in-residence at Sally Ride Science in San Diego, said in a news briefing.

Each Grail spacecraft is equipped with four cameras, one pointed forward at a 60 degree angle, one pointed behind at the same angle, and two that are positioned to look straight down at the moon’s surface, Hubbard explained.

“You never know what the wow factor is going to be for a student, you never know what an image will evoke,” Hubbard said. “It’s difficult for us to measure the impact of inspiration, but NASA does have that inspiration factor and our students certainly need that, and it’s certainly something they can get excited about.”

You can watch a video on this over here.

Kitguru says: We wonder what they will find this time!

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