Presentation: LCROSS: Searching for Water at the Moon's Poles
Northrop Grumman collaborated with NASA's Ames Research Center to develop the Lunar CRater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS). It's mission is to impact into one of the moon's permanently-shadowed polar regions at nearly 5,600 mph (2.5 kilometers/second). The impact's resulting 20-25 mile high plume will reveal the composition of the lunar subsurface, including the possible existence of hydrated minerals, hydrocarbons, and especially ice crystals. The spacecraft includes a payload consisting of 2 Near-Infra-Red cameras, 2 Medium-Infra-Red cameras, 1 Visible Color camera, 2 Infra-Red Spectrometers, 1 Visible Spectrometer, and 1 Total Luminosity sensor. The spacecraft was launched June 18, 2009 from Cape Canaveral, Florida, and is currently flying in the first of three large Earth orbits in order to fine-tune its targeting trajectory for an October 9th impact with the Moon.
Speaker: Craig Elder, LCROSS Spacecraft Program Manager, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems
Mr. Elder brings 27 years of aerospace hardware expertise to the challenge of designing, building, launching, and "crashing" the LCROSS spacecraft. Craig earned his BSEE from the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana and his MSEE from Cal State Long Beach, with emphasis on power electronics and communication satellites. He has served in roles of increasing responsibility at TRW/Northrop, including Responsible Design Engineer, IR&D Principle Investigator, Department Manager for Power Conversion, Department Manager for Electrical Power Subsystems, and Project Manager for several restricted-access projects. Craig is a private pilot, and enjoys coaching youth sports, church leadership/service, bicycling, and family activities.
"What's Up?" in this month will be presented by Steve Condrey
Pre-meeting Slide Show (~5 MB)
Club Announcements (~1 MB)