First Instruments to be Aboard Lunar Orbiter Gateway Announced

Image credit: NASA/Government Accountability Office

NASA revealed the first two scientific instruments that will be aboard the upcoming lunar orbiter Gateway on March 12. Gateway will orbit the Moon and will be intermittently occupied by up to four astronauts at a time during future missions. NASA will provide one device to observe space weather, such as variations in the stream of plasma that makes up the solar wind, including potentially violent and harmful solar outbursts. The European Space Agency will provide a second device to measure the nature of radiation that may be emitted from the Sun or other celestial bodies and monitor radiation exposure in Gateway’s orbit. These devices will be used to make informed decisions about future human exploration of the lunar surface and will provide additional support for future missions to Mars. They will be among the initial payload that will depart for lunar orbit in 2022 in preparation for the Artemis missions that will include human exploration of the lunar surface scheduled to begin in 2024. READ MORE