As the LRO mission celebrates 13 years orbiting the Moon, we look to what tasks it will take on in its extended mission phase (ESM5).
Music provided by Universal Production Music: "We're Getting Started" - Frederick Kron; "Whoop It Up" - Paul Joseph Smith.
This year, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) celebrates its 13th anniversary orbiting the Moon. This mission has given scientists the largest volume of data ever collected by a planetary science mission at NASA. Considering that success and the continuing functionality of the spacecraft and its instruments, NASA has awarded the mission an extended mission phase to continue operations. This is LRO's 5th extended science mission (ESM5), and during this time there will be 4 major areas of focus: 1) The study of volatiles; 2) Studying the Moon's interior, volcanic features, and the tectonics of the surface; 3) Studying the Moon's regolith and impact craters; and 4) Support for future missions. This video goes into detail about these focus areas and shows how LRO continues to be one of NASA's most valuable tools for advancing lunar science.