Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera

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Into LROC's Science Operations Center (SOC)

October 12, 2009

Hello.  My name is Shane Thompson and I am a lunatic. I am the Operations Lead for the LROC Operations Team at ASU for the Science Operations Center (SOC). I am an ASU alumni from the geology department and have been involved with lunar research for the last two years and Mars research for the last nine.

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LCROSS Impacts the Moon!

October 10, 2009

The Lunar CRater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) impacted the Moon as planned on 7:31 a.m. (EDT) Oct. 9

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LCROSS will Impact Moon on Friday Oct. 9th

October 8, 2009

LCROSS (Lunar CRater Observation and Sensing Satellite), one of the instruments sent into space along with LRO (Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter), is on schedule to impact the Moon this Friday (October 9th) at 7:30am EDT. Coverage and additional information will be available live from NASA.

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Predicting Imaging Conditions - The Temperature Model

September 28, 2009

Hi, my name is Prasun Mahanti and I am involved with temperature modeling for the LRO Narrow Angle Camera [NAC]. The NAC is a digital camera and uses semiconductor devices to take a picture similar to your own digital camera. As an example, when the NAC is looking at a mountain on the Moon, the image is recorded by a charge coupled device (CCD) instead of film. Semiconductors (here a CCD) are very temperature sensitive, so the noise characteristics of the returned image varies when the temperature goes up and down. Several of us in the LROC Science Operations Center therefore are tasked with forecasting the probable temperature of the NAC CCD a few days in advance. For a given temperature appropriate image acquisition commands can be sent to LRO for different positions around the Moon to insure the best-quality images.

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Producing NAC and WAC Mosaics

September 24, 2009

As a student researcher at LROC, I (Steven Koeber) mosaic images from the Narrow-Angle Cameras (NACs) and the Wide-Angle Camera (WAC). Mosaics are composed of several individual images that are stitched together, permitting an investigator to explore the geophysical and compositional properties of the lunar surface on a global or regional scale. NAC and WAC mosaics are produced using a specialized image-processing package called ISIS, the Integrated System for Imagers and Spectrometers. ISIS has the unique capability for processing data from several NASA spacecraft missions, including the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO).

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Moonwall Exhibit Opens

September 21, 2009

A new exhibit, Moonwall, has recently opened at Adler Planetarium. Moonwall is an interactive flight over the Moon which will feature the latest high resolution data returned from LROC. Continue reading to watch a video demonstration!

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LRO is in Mapping Orbit

September 17, 2009

On September 15th LRO successfully executed its Mission Orbit Insertion (MOI) propulsive maneuver which established the nominal mission orbit. This means the LRO cameras are now in a 50km polar mapping orbit of the Moon, which will result in higher resolution images.

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The Business Side of LROC

September 14, 2009

Hi, I am Carmen Salas, the Business Manager for LROC. My job is to ensure that all the business operation functions are in place. The business functions consist of Human Resource (payroll, hiring, termination, and unresolved issues); financial functions (research, local, and state accounts; report submission for ASU/NASA, reconciliation of accounts); proposal pre/post award submissions; education and public outreach (work with the EPO team on various projects); travel requests; and ensuring that all the students and staff comply with Arizona State policy and procedures.

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A Look into System Administration

September 2, 2009

My name is Zach Gates and I am a Sophomore at ASU in the Computer Science program. I work on the LROC project as a student system administrator, which means I help our sys-admins create and maintain the computer systems our project needs to run. Working here at LROC is a great opportunity for me to learn more about my field through hands-on experience.

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Digital Elevation Models (DEM)

August 25, 2009

My name's Tawny, and I am one of the ASU undergraduate student workers at LROC. One of the many fun tasks I get to do is to produce Digital Elevation Models (DEM) of the lunar surface by using specialized hardware and software to extract elevation data on the Moon from stereo images. A DEM is like a digital version of an old-fashioned contour map and essentially provides the elevation of the surface for each pixel. For a pair of images to be stereo, it must show the same location on the Moon taken with different illumination conditions. Or, to put it another way, the relative angles of the Sun, the lunar surface, and the spacecraft have to be different for each picture while showing the same region.

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