Wednesday , April 14 2021

Shadow camera can see if there is water on the moon … Korean lunar orbiter ‘Mission’ launched



An outline of the scientific mission to be carried out by the Korean Lunar Orbit, to be launched next year.  The picture is a virtual map of the lunar orbit. [사진 항우연]

An outline of the scientific mission to be carried out by the Korean Lunar Orbit, to be launched next year. The picture is a virtual map of the lunar orbit. [사진 항우연]

The exact mission of the Korean lunar orbit launched by Korea has been revealed. The Ministry of Science and Information Technology (Ministry of Science and Information Technology) on Monday unveiled a plan to launch a scientific mission for the Korean Pathfinder Lunar Orbit (KPLO) to be launched in August next year. The lunar orbit goes into space with six payments, orbits the lunar surface 100 km above the ground a year and performs several missions. Focusing on what payment is fitted, we find out what mission the lunar orbit performs.

Major mission to Korean lunar orbit.  Graphic correspondent Hyun-se Kim

Major mission to Korean lunar orbit. Graphic Reporter Hyun-se Kim

Resolution high resolution camera

A high-resolution camera mounted on a Korean lunar orbit accurately captures the lunar surface. [사진 과기부]

A high-resolution camera mounted on a Korean lunar orbit accurately captures the lunar surface. [사진 과기부]

The high resolution camera (LUTI, Lunar Terrain Imager) is a camera that captures the main areas of the lunar surface. Developed by the Korean Space Research Organization, the high-resolution camera has a maximum resolution of 5 meters or less and accurately monitors the lunar surface. Spatial error, the maximum distance between the actual location and the location where the camera was photographed, is less than 225 meters.

While observing the lunar surface with such accuracy, the lunar orbiter by 2030 is looking for candidates to land the lunar lander at the landing site. It also shoots astronomical images of the moon using a high-resolution camera.

Extensive field polarization camera

An extensive field polarization camera developed by the Astronomical Research Institute of Korea.  The light vibrates in a specific direction and moves forward. [사진 과기부]

An extensive field polarization camera developed by the Astronomical Research Institute of Korea. The light vibrates in a specific direction and moves forward. [사진 과기부]

A wide-angle polarized camera (Pol Cam) developed by the Astronomical Research Institute of Korea captures the surface of the moon with a resolution of 100 meters. A wide-field polarization camera captures polarized light (light vibrates in a specific direction and travels in a specific direction) that ordinary cameras cannot capture as an image. The world’s first polarized map on the lunar surface is expected to contribute to the study of space weather caused by micro-meteorite impacts on lunar, solar, wind and high-energy spacecraft.

Creating a Titanium Map is the work of an extensive field polarization camera. Titanium (ilmenite) is a large mineral that has the property of reflecting more light at a specific wavelength. Using this principle, wide-field polarization cameras work to locate and map titanium-rich areas in a specific area of ​​the moon.

Launched by NASA, the Lunar Rehabilitation Orbiter (LRO) created a titanium map of the moon with a resolution of 300 meters.

A magnetic field meter that measures the minute magnetic field around the moon is mounted on the lunar orbit line and is used to study lunar magnetic anomalies. [사진 과기부]

A magnetic field meter that measures the minute magnetic field around the moon is mounted on the lunar orbit line and is used to study lunar magnetic anomalies. [사진 과기부]

The Magnetic Field Meter (KMAG · KPLO MAGnetometer), developed by Kyung Hee University, is an instrument that measures the minute magnetic field around the moon. He was responsible for creating a three-dimensional magnetic field map with the highest level of accuracy in the world (in the range of n 1000nT) by measuring the intensity of the minute magnetic field around the moon, which gradually disappeared after the moon was formed.

Using a magnetic field meter, it is possible to identify areas of magnetic anomaly with strong magnetic field strength locally on the lunar surface. Through this, research will be done on how magnetic anomalies were created and evolved by the lunar orbit.

The Ministry of Science and Technology hopes that the magnetic field meter will be able to “obtain data for research to investigate the process of the moon’s location and evolution, or to investigate the space environment.”

Gamma ray spectroscopy developed by the Geological and Mineral Resources Institute of Korea serves to explore lunar geology. [사진 과기부]

Gamma ray spectroscopy developed by the Geological and Mineral Resources Institute of Korea serves to explore lunar geology. [사진 과기부]

Gamma ray spectroscopy (KGRS · KPLO gamma-ray spectrum) developed by the Geological and Mineral Resources Institute of Korea collects gamma ray measurements on the lunar surface. It explores lunar resources with a gamma ray spectroscopy system based on a scintillation detector. Specifically, it plans to create an ‘elemental map’ by looking at what elements exist on the moon. Helium-3, which attracts attention as a source of pure energy, and whether it contains water, oxygen, rare earths, or minerals that are essential for life.

In addition, gamma ray spectroscopy is expected to look for materials that can be used to build the lunar base for lunar geological and resource research. The Ministry of Science and Technology explained, “In the process of exploring the lunar resources, gamma ray spectroscopy is expected to provide information on important candidates for the selection of lunar landing sites.”

Internet Space Internet Authenticator

Space Internet Authenticator will verify the Internet communication technology in space. [사진 과기부]

Space Internet Authenticator will verify space Internet communication technology. [사진 과기부]

The DTN (Disruptive Tolerance Network) Authenticator, developed by the Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI), verifies space Internet communications technology between Earth and Moon orbits. It is in charge of message / file transmission or real-time video transmission testing.

According to the Ministry of Science and Technology, a high-resolution camera, a wide-field polarization camera, a magnetic field meter, a gamma ray spectrometer and a space internet verifier were all developed using local technology. All five payments developed by Korea are already stored at the Korea Space Research Institute, the governing body of the lunar orbit.

A shadow camera mounted in a Korean lunar orbit to explore dark shaded areas of the moon. [사진 과기부]

A shadow camera mounted in a Korean lunar orbit to explore dark shaded areas of the moon. [사진 과기부]

The Shadow Cam, developed by Arizona State University in the United States, is equipped with a Korean lunar orbit to explore dark shaded areas of the moon. It is known that the sensitivity is 800 times better than that of a shadow camera mounted on an American lunar exploration satellite currently orbiting the moon.

Since the moon rotates at the same time, only one side of the earth is always visible. So, some areas of the moon are permanent shaded areas that are shaded all year round. Shooting with a normal camera is dark. The shadow camera is a camera that can shoot here.

The reason for filming the permanent shaded area of ​​the moon may be water or ice. Since the moon has no atmosphere, water molecules evaporate as soon as they are exposed to the sun. On the other hand, there is a hypothesis that there may be traces of water molecules in the shaded areas of the moon, and a shadow camera is used to test this hypothesis. The shadow cameras are due to be brought to Korea in June via the National Aerospace Administration (NASA).

Overview of Korean lunar orbit.  Graphic Reporter Kim Yoon-kyo

Overview of Korean lunar orbit. Graphic Reporter Kim Yoon-kyo

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Science and Technology is planning to launch a Korean lunar orbit in August 2022 using the US spacecraft Falcon-9 rocket. If the lunar orbit is successfully launched into space, the goal is to settle into lunar orbit by the end of next year. If the lunar orbit is also successful, the lunar orbit is expected to be studied with interest for a year from January to December 2023.

The Korean Space Research Organization has said that “lunar orbit will be launched on August 1.” We are preparing to launch lunar orbit before September 9, “he said.

Reporter Moon Hee-chiol reporter @ joongang.co.kr





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