12 NASA scientific Moon tests projects: NASA has awarded a $ 2.3 million contract for two years for this project.
L-CIRiS for "Lunar Compact InfraRed Imaging System" - A radiometer, an instrument for measuring the infrared wavelengths of light, will be deployed to study the composition of the Moon's surface, map the temperature distribution of surface and show if the device could be used for future missions to extract in situ resources.
LEXI for "Lunar Heliospheric Environment X-ray Imager" - This experiment will take pictures of the interaction between the Earth's magnetosphere, located between the interplanetary and the upper Earth's atmosphere, with the flow of charged particles - ions and electrons - ejected from the Sun, called solar wind.
LISTER for "Lunar Instrumentation for Subsurface Thermal Exploration with Rapidity" - This is an instrument designed to measure heat flow from inside the moon. The objective would be to drill the regolith at two or three meters deep to take the temperature at different levels.
LuSEE for "Lunar Surface Electromagnetics Experiment" - This project will use material from the Parker Solar (Sun) and MAVEN (Mars) missions to take measurements of electromagnetic events on the surface of the Moon.
The Moon Magnetotelluric Probe - This instrument is intended to provide information on the structure and composition of the Moon's mantle by examining its electric and magnetic fields. Originally, it was designed for NASA's MAVEN probe, currently in orbit around Mars.
MoonRanger - This fast little rover, designed by Astrobotic, the company behind one of the future lunar landers, should be able to explore the terrain within a kilometer of its base and map it in 3D.
"MoonRanger provides a means to accomplish large-scale and important scientific missions, and will demonstrate a proven capability on Moon missions for NASA and the commercial sector." MoonRanger's self-reliance techniques will help new kinds of exploration missions that will mark the beginning of a new era on the moon, "said Carnegie Mello's Red Whittaker, who was responsible for the project in a statement from Astrobotic.
12 NASA scientific Moon tests projects
NASA is funding this project for $ 5.6 million.
NGLR for "Next Generation Lunar Retroreflectors" - Lasers on Earth will target these optical devices to accurately measure the distance between the Earth and the Moon.
Radiation-Resistant Computer - The Moon has a very thin atmosphere and a very weak magnetic field with respect to the Earth. Thus, exposure to cosmic radiation is strong, which damages electronic equipment.
Planetvac - This is a technology to transfer the lunar regolith to other instruments that will analyze it or keep it in containers that will return to Earth.
RAC for "Regolith Adherence Characterization" - This project is expected to determine how the regolith (dust that covers the lunar soil) adheres to materials exposed to the lunar environment at different flight stages.
SAMPLR for "Sample Acquisition, Morphology Filtering, and Probing of Lunar Regolith" - A technology to collect samples from the Moon should be deployed. It includes a robotic arm, which is a replacement model originally designed for the Mars Exploration Rover mission.