Lunar Science Institute

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The NLSI brings together leading lunar scientists from around the world to further NASA lunar science and exploration.

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Lunar Advanced Science and Exploration Research (LASER)

    The Lunar Advanced Science and Exploration Research (LASER) program funds basic and applied lunar science. The goal of the program is to support and enhance lunar basic science and lunar exploration science.

    It is the objective of the LASER program to conduct a portfolio of lunar science investigations spanning the continuum from basic science to applied exploration science.

    The LASER program supports the broad spectrum of fundamental lunar science encompassing investigations of the lunar surface, interior, exosphere, and the Moon’s near-space environment. Investigations of Earth-Moon system processes and selenogenesis are equally welcome. Supported investigations include, but are not limited to, theoretical investigations, numerical modeling of physical/chemical processes, experimental/laboratory investigations, and field analog studies. Proposed investigations may involve a combination of these activities. The spectrum of lunar science funded by LASER includes the following fields of lunar science: geology, geochemistry, geophysics, exospheric science, solar wind environment history/physics, and radiation environment physics. Topical study areas that will be supported by LASER include, but are not limited to, the following:
    • Genesis and dynamical evolution of the Earth-moon system;
    • Lunar evolution (crust, interior, radiation environment, etc.);
    • Physics and chemistry of the lunar interior (e.g., composition, structure, heat flow etc.);
    • Geomorphological analysis of the lunar surface;
    • Lunar cratering processes;
    • Petrogenesis of lunar materials;
    • Lunar volcanological history and processes;
    • Evolution of the lunar radiation environment;
    • Growth and development of the lunar regolith; and
    • Development, composition, and physics of the moon's exosphere.

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