NASA probe on its way to the Moon

Engineers have resolved a minor glitch with a new NASA robotic lunar probe, which blasted off last week for the first leg of a 30-day trip to the moon. Shortly after the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer, or LADEE, spacecraft separated from its Minotaur 5 launch vehicle, its positioning system shut down due to what appeared to be a high electrical current. Engineers quickly determined there was no problem with the reaction wheels, which are needed to steer and stabilise the spacecraft. Rather, the glitch involved a fault protection system designed to safeguard the wheels. "The limits that caused the powering off of the wheels soon after activation were disabled, and reaction wheel fault protection has been selectively re-enabled," according to a NASA press release. Engineers will assess how to manage the fault protection system, adds project manager Butler Hine, with NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California.Read More


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