NASA reconnects to Cape Stone satellite
WASHINGTON: The US space agency NASA has said that a spacecraft sent to investigate the lunar orbit has reconnected with the agency.
The space agency said on Wednesday that the spacecraft, built at a cost of 27 32.7 million, made a successful and partial connection after it left Earth’s orbit on Monday, after which the connection was lost.
Launched from New Zealand on June 28, the spacecraft has been orbiting the Earth for about a week.
Weighing about 25 kilograms, this microwave oven-like satellite will be the first spacecraft to test an elliptical orbit around the moon. This is the orbit where NASA wants to send its gateway outpost.
The gateway will serve as a place where astronauts will stop before landing on the moon.
In this orbit, the gravity of the earth and the moon is balanced, so a slight movement is required to keep the satellite or space station in constant contact with the earth.