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Surveyor 7: The Mission to Tycho

7 Jan 2018, 16:48 UTC
Surveyor 7: The Mission to Tycho
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

While NASA struggled to address issues with the Apollo program to land men on the Moon, its automated missions to the Moon during 1966 and 1967 had made spectacular progress. The Lunar Orbiter series had flown five largely successful missions in five attempts. Not only did the program meet its objectives to map potential landing sites for early Apollo missions, it also managed to map almost the entire lunar surface as well as provide high-resolution images of other sites of more scientific interest that could be visited by later missions (see the Lunar Orbiter page for descriptions of these missions). Likewise, the Surveyor landing missions had scored four successes in six attempts during this time providing the Apollo program with ground-truth data on the relatively smooth mare which would host the first manned lunar landings. With its objectives to support Apollo met, the final Surveyor mission, designated “Surveyor G” before launch, was free to pursue more science-oriented goals. Ultimately it was decided to target Surveyor G for a site in the lunar highlands adjacent to the prominent young crater called Tycho.

The Surveyor Spacecraft
Work began on NASA’s Surveyor program in May 1960 under the responsibility of Caltech’s ...

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