A robotic spacecraft was preparing to land on the lunar surface at 12:40 p.m. (Puerto Rico time) on Tuesday, and the area was captured from the island through a telescope.
It is a 7.5-foot (2.3-meter) high-rise block-built Japanese vessel Hakuto-R, and has two robotic carriages.
Although a rocket can reach the moon in just three days, the ship will have to make various changes in its orbit to gradually approach our natural satellite, as it requires better planning, maneuvers and eventually deceleration. “The spacecraft is attempting a successful landing on the lunar surface,” the Astronomical Society of the Caribbean (SAC) explained.
The HAKUTO-R spacecraft was launched from Florida, USA on December 11, 2022 on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, and is orbiting the Moon as a technology demonstration vessel in preparation for a lunar surface landing attempt. It orbits the Moon in an elliptical or oval orbit, bringing it within about 62 miles (100 km) of the lunar surface.
In the event of a successful lunar landing, two small rovers would be deployed; One is from Japan and the other is “Rashid” from the United Arab Emirates. There are also two cameras to study the surface of the moon. If achieved, it would be the first successful lunar landing by a private spacecraft and would make Japan the fourth country to land a spacecraft on the moon after the United States, the Soviet Union and China.
One of the possible locations for a landing attempt is near the Atlas Crater in “Mare Frigoris” located on the northern side of our natural satellite. This area is marked in images obtained from Aguadilla by Efrain Morales, one of the SAC astrophotographers. If necessary, the landing attempt can be postponed, and in that case, another part of the moon can be selected for the feat.
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