In this week’s Fun Find, we’re looking at technology innovation by Colorado company Advanced Space, designer of the CAPSTONE satellite. CAPSTONE stands for the “Cislunar Autonomous Positioning System Technology Operations and Navigation Experiment.” That’s a long name that hints at some of the fun things about this new technology.
Wondering what’s exciting about the CAPSTONE satellite mission?
The CAPSTONE satellite, only the size of a microwave oven, represents an important milestone toward NASA’s goal of returning humans to the moon.
Why is this mission so important to the Artemis program’s aim of returning to the moon? Rocket Lab founder Peter Beck spoke to the Associated Press about the excitement surrounding the mission, and the low cost seems to be key.
The satellite launched from New Zealand on June 28, and it will take a few months for it to reach the moon. If all goes to plan, a few key things will happen when it reaches the moon:
NASA wants to use the CAPSTONE satellite to test the new near-rectilinear halo orbit for several reasons:
According to the AP report published in the Colorado Sun, “The plan now is for the 25-kilogram (55-pound) satellite to far overshoot the moon before falling back into the new lunar orbit Nov. 13. The satellite will use tiny amounts of fuel to make a few planned trajectory course corrections along the way.”
While Colorado’s Advanced Space company designed and owns the CAPSTONE satellite technology, manufacturing takes place in California at Terran Orbital. See more about CAPSTONE at the Advanced Space company website.
We congratulate Advanced Space, Terran Orbital, and Rocket Lab on a successful mission launch! It’s an exciting moment as the CAPSTONE satellite heads to the Moon! We’ll be watching for the big moment of orbit stabilization in November.
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With over two decades of experience, Parin leads an expert demand-generation agency, StratMg, that helps industrial manufacturing clients achieve unambiguous and quantified organic sales growth across the US, EMEA & APAC.
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