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US private lunar lander's battery may last up to 20 more hours

Xinhua | Updated: 2024-02-28 01:53

This handout picture released on Feb 23 shows Intuitive Machines' Odysseus lunar lander capturing a wide field of view image of Schomberger crater on the Moon. [Intuitive Machines/Handout via REUTERS]

LOS ANGELES -- Flight controllers continued to communicate with US company Intuitive Machines' first lunar lander Odysseus Tuesday morning, and the lander's battery may last up to an additional 10 to 20 hours, the company said on Tuesday.

The uncrewed lander landed at the lunar South Pole last Thursday, marking the first American spacecraft to land on the lunar surface in more than 50 years.

Although the Odysseus touched down on lunar surface, analysis of data by flight engineers showed that the six-legged spacecraft tripped over its own feet during its final descent, according to the company.

The spacecraft was believed to have caught one of its landing feet on the uneven lunar surface, and came to rest sideways.

Flight Controllers continued to communicate with Odysseus Tuesday morning, and Odysseus efficiently sent payload of science data and imagery in furtherance of the company's mission objectives, Intuitive Machines tweeted.

"Flight controllers are working on final determination of battery life on the lander, which may continue up to an additional 10 to 20 hours," said the company.

Odysseus carries NASA science and other commercial payloads to the moon.

The last US moon landing mission was made in December 1972, when Apollo 17 touched down on the lunar surface for the final mission of the Apollo Program.

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