The moon, Earth’s closest celestial neighbor, has been an object of marvel and thriller since time immemorial.
Scientific missions over the centuries have peeled away layers of that thriller, however the moon continues to harbor many secrets and techniques. This timeline of humanity’s exploration of the moon, supplied by NASA, shouldn’t be by any means complete however does spotlight among the main milestones courting again 4 centuries:
1609: Hans Lippershey invented the telescope.
1610: Italian astronomer Galileo Galilei made the primary telescopic statement of the moon.
1610: Thomas Harriot and Galileo Galilei drew the primary telescopic illustration of the moon.
1645: Michael Florent van Langren made the primary map of the moon.
1647: Johannes Hevelius printed the primary treatise dedicated to the moon.
1651: Giovanni Battista Riccioli named craters after philosophers and astronomers.
1753: Roger Joseph Boscovich proved the moon has no ambiance.
1824: Franz von Gruithuisen thought craters had been fashioned by meteor strikes.
1920: Robert Goddard advised sending rockets to the moon.
1959: Soviet spacecraft Luna 2 reached the moon, impacting close to the crater Autolycus.
1961: President John F. Kennedy proposed a manned lunar program.
1964: NASA’s Ranger 7 produced the primary close-up TV footage of the lunar floor.
1966: Soviet spacecraft Luna 9 made the primary mushy touchdown on the moon.
1967: NASA’s Lunar Orbiter missions accomplished photographic mapping of the moon.
1968: NASA’s Apollo 8 made the primary crewed flight to the moon, circling it 10 instances earlier than returning to Earth.
1969: Apollo 12 made first precision touchdown on the the moon.
1972: Apollo 17 made the final crewed touchdown of the Apollo Program.
1976: Soviet Luna 24 returned the final pattern to be returned from the moon for many years to come back.
1990: NASA’s Galileo spacecraft, on its strategy to Jupiter, obtained multispectral photos of the western limb and a part of the far aspect of the moon.
1994: NASA’s Clementine mission performed multispectral mapping of the moon.
1998: NASA’s Lunar Prospector mission launched.
2007: Japanese SELENE (Kaguya) spacecraft launched.
2008: India’s Chandrayaan 1 moon orbiter launched.
2010: China’s Chang’e 2 lunar orbiter launched, taking images to organize for future landings.
2011: NASA’s Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) mission mapped the moon’s gravitational area intimately.
2013: NASA’s Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) investigated the lunar ambiance and dirt.
2014: A check car for the longer term Chang’e 5 mission launched and flew by the moon to reveal a technique for lunar pattern return.
2018: The Queqiao satellite tv for pc took place to relay instructions and knowledge between the Chang’e Four lander, scheduled to land on the far aspect of the moon, and Earth.
2019: Israel’s first moon lander, Beresheet, crashed into the moon’s floor.
2019: Chandrayaan 2, India’s second mission to the moon, launched. The rover seems to have crashed, however the orbiter is in operation.
Coming in 2021
2021: Peregrine Mission 1, the primary business lunar touchdown, is scheduled to launch. It should embrace Astrobotic’s Peregrine lander and near a dozen different NASA payloads just like the Iris rover.
2021: Russia plans to launch Luna 25, a lander developed in collaboration with the ESA. (Luna-24 launched in 1976.)
2021: NASA plans to launch a number of cubesats through the Space Launch System rocket as a part of the Artemis program to return astronauts to the moon. OMOTENASHI, Japan’s first lunar lander, and a Japanese cubesat referred to as EQUULEUS are anticipated to launch as a part of this block as effectively.
This text was up to date on Mar. 15, 2021 by Area.com Reference Editor Vicky Stein with new details about upcoming missions.
Observe us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Fb.