The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) mission will conduct investigations preparing for and supporting future human exploration of the moon. The LRO spacecraft will spend at least one year in a low, polar orbit, with all its six instruments working simultaneously to collect detailed information about the lunar environment. The following stills were taken during the building, integrating, and testing of the spacecraft.
The LRO spacecraft sits horizontal and displays its entire instrument suite. One of the two medium-sized images contains labels pointing out the individual instruments and their location on the spacecraft.
Here you can see three important parts that are needed to fly a spacecraft. On the left is the avionics module, which contains the electronics used for communication and navigation. In the center is the propulsion module, which contains the spacecraft's fuel. On the right are the reaction wheels, used to change LRO's angular momentum and point the spacecraft in the right direction. One of the medium-sized images in this group contains labels.
LRO's High-Gain Antenna stretches out toward the camera in this photo. LRO's High-Gain Antenna System provides communication coverage with the Earth in both the S-band and the Ka-band radio frequencies.
A technician integrates one of LRO's narrow angle camera instruments. LROC, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera, is actually a suite of cameras that includes two identical narrow angle camera heads to provide 0.5 m scale panchromatic images over a 5 km swath and a wide angle camera head to provide images at a 100 m scale in seven color bands.