phone interview

phone interview

NASA's moon orbiting robot crashes down - 19 April 2014

2d ago
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Flight controllers confirmed Friday that the orbiting spacecraft crashed into the back side of the moon as planned, just three days after surviving a full lunar eclipse, something it was never designed to do. Researchers believe LADEE likely vaporized upon contact because of its extreme orbiting speed of 3,600 mph, possibly smacking into a mountain or side of a crater. No debris would have been left behind. "It's bound to make a dent," project scientist Rick Elphic predicted Thursday. By Thursday evening, the spacecraft had been skimming the lunar surface at an incredibly low altitude of 300 feet. Its orbit had been lowered on purpose last week to ensure a crash by Monday following an extraordinarily successful science mission. LADEE — short for Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer — was launched in September from Virginia. It completed its primary 100-day science mission last month and was on overtime. The extension had LADEE flying during Tuesday morning's lunar eclipse; its instruments were not designed to endure such prolonged darkness and cold. But the small spacecraft survived — it's about the size of a vending machine — with just a couple pressure sensors acting up. The mood in the control center at NASA's Ames Research Center in Mountain View, Calif., was upbeat late Thursday afternoon, according to project manager Butler Hine. "Having flown through the eclipse and survived, the team is actually feeling very good," Hine told The Associated Press in a phone interview. But he uncertainty of the timing of LADEE's demise had the flight controllers "on edge," he said. "Each orbit could be the last one and you don't know. It's kind of a crapshoot," Hine said. "So I'd say everybody's in good spirits, but there's that uncertainty. Is it going to happen next hour or three hours from now or are we going to make it all the way through Sunday?" TAGS: abc breaking news, bbc, bbc football, bbc iplayer, bbc news, bbc news america, bbc persian, bbc sport, bbc weather, bbc world news, breaking celebrity news, breaking election news, breaking late news, breaking local news, breaking music news, breaking news, breaking news alerts, breaking news canada, breaking news headlines, breaking news in atlanta, breaking news in nigeria, breaking news india, breaking news pensacola florida, breaking news plane crash, breaking news story, breaking sports news, business expensive news home media world, christian world news, cnn, cnn breaking news, cnn money, cnn news, cnn news breaking news, cnn news world, detroit breaking news, global news, headline, headline news, health care technology news, hot latest global news, internet technology news, las vegas breaking news, latest breaking news, latest celebrity news, latest information technology news, latest music news, latest news, latest news headlines, latest news update, latest sports news, live breaking news, local breaking news, local news today, msn breaking news, nbc breaking news, nbc world news, news of the world, news report us world, news today news, news updated daily, solar technology news, sports news today, technology news, the latest news, today news, us news and world, us news and world report, us news and world report magazine, us news and world report web site, us news world report, world news, world news daily, world news headlines,Ukrainian,Ukraine Protest,Ukraine Crisis,Ukraine Ex-Leader,Malaysia Airline Latest News,Malaysia Airlines Searching,Malaysia Airline Searched,Malaysia Airlines Missing,Malaysia Airlines Crashes video,Malaysia Airline Footage,Malaysia Airline Crashed,Crashed,Malaysia Plane Crashed,Malaysia Plane Today News,Malaysia Plane Latest News,Plane News,Today Plane Breaking News,Today Malaysia Airline Latest News,Malaysia Airlines MH370,China In New Debris Clue,Satellite Images Of Malaysia Airlines,Malaysia Airlines Flight 370,Missing Malaysia Airlines,Malaysia Airport. Missing Malaysian Plane Announcement By Malaysian PM Families Told Miss...