LADEE's Planned Impact: Frequently Asked Questions
10:59 p.m. PDT Thursday, April 17, 2014
Ground controllers at NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., have confirmed that the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) spacecraft has impacted the surface of the moon, as planned.
LADEE News and Features
What was LADEE?
NASA's Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) - pronounced "laddie" - was a robotic mission that orbited the moon to gather detailed information about the structure and composition of the thin lunar atmosphere, and determine whether dust is lofted into the lunar sky. A thorough understanding of these characteristics of our nearest celestial neighbor will help researchers understand other bodies in the solar system, such as large asteroids, Mercury, and the moons of outer planets.
The LADEE spacecraft's modular common spacecraft bus, or body, innovated away from custom designs and transitioned toward multi-use designs and assembly-line production, which could drastically reduce the cost of spacecraft development, just as the Ford Model T did for automobiles. NASA's Ames Research Center designed, developed, built, and tested the spacecraft and managed mission operations.