Forced end! The Odysseus lunar module interrupts its activity

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módulo lunar Odysseus interrumpe su actividad

The Odysseus lunar module mission shutdown was anticipated for yesterday afternoon due to insufficient solar power in its panels. This event marked a milestone in space exploration, as “Oddy” represents the first private module to successfully land on the south pole of the Moon, a significant achievement for Intuitive Machinesthe Houston, Texas-based company responsible for its creation and launch.

The Odysseus lunar lander would continue to collect data

The company has communicated that it would continue data collection until the panels stopped receiving sunlight, which was scheduled to occur yesterday, thus ceasing the module’s ability to transmit further images. According to Intuitive Machines’ statements on its social media platforms, communication with Odysseus was expected to be maintained until yesterday morning.

On the other hand, the Odysseus module has been conducting experiments on behalf of NASA, the mission’s primary sponsor, since its landing last Thursday. However, it did not go as planned, as one of the module’s six legs got caught in the lunar surface, causing the spacecraft to capsize.

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Despite this setback, several photographs of the lunar environment have been collected, although the transmission of data to Earth has been slower than anticipated due to the disorientation of the antennas caused by the incident.

The landing of Odysseus on the Moon breaks a long hiatus in lunar exploration by the United States, which had not seen a spacecraft land on the Moon since the Apollo 17 mission in 1972. This development could signal the end of decades of limited research in this area.

Importantly, the resumption of lunar exploration by private entities, such as Intuitive Machines, not only revitalizes scientific and public interest in the Moon, but also opens up new possibilities for future commercial and research missions. This new chapter in space exploration could lead to significant advances in our understanding of the Moon, as well as in the development of technologies for living and working in extraterrestrial environments, ushering in a more inclusive and diversified era of lunar exploration.

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