xi's moments
Home | Americas

US makes first lunar landing in over 50 years

Xinhua | Updated: 2024-02-23 10:20

Intuitive Machines' Odysseus spacecraft passes over the near side of the Moon following lunar orbit insertion on Feb 21, 2024, in this handout image released Feb 22, 2024. [Photo/Agencies]

LOS ANGELES - US company Intuitive Machines' first lunar lander touched down on the moon Thursday, marking the first American spacecraft to land on the lunar surface in more than 50 years.

The uncrewed lander, named Odysseus, landed at the lunar South Pole at 6:23 pm Eastern Time, according to NASA.

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

The spacecraft launched on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket on Thursday last week from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The mission, codenamed IM-1, marks Intuitive Machines' first robotic flight to the moon's surface.

The scientific objectives of the mission include studies of plume-surface interactions, radio astronomy, and space weather interactions with the lunar surface. It will also demonstrate precision landing technologies and communication and navigation node capabilities, according to NASA.

NASA is working with several US companies to deliver science and technology to the lunar surface through the Commercial Lunar Payload Services initiative.

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.

Global Edition
Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349