Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter

  • Released Thursday, March 4th, 2010
  • Updated Tuesday, December 5th, 2023 at 12:00AM


The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, or LRO, is a multipurpose NASA spacecraft launched in 2009 to make a comprehensive atlas of the Moon’s features and resources. Since launch, LRO has measured the coldest temperatures in the solar system inside the Moon’s permanently shadowed craters, detected evidence of water ice at the Moon’s south pole, seen hints of recent geologic activity on the Moon, found newly-formed craters from present-day meteorite impacts, tested spaceborne laser communication technology, and much more.

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