NASA will provide live commentary of the scheduled lunar surface impacts of its twin Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) spacecraft beginning at 2 p.m. PST (5 p.m. EST) Monday, Dec. 17. The event will be broadcast on NASA Television and streamed on the agency’s website.

The two probes will hit a mountain near the lunar north pole at approximately 2:28 p.m. Monday, bringing their successful prime and extended science missions to an end.

Commentary will originate from the control room at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, Calif. Coverage will last about 35 minutes and include live interviews with GRAIL team members. GRAIL’s final resting place on the moon will be in shadow at the time of impact, so no video documentation of the impacts is expected.

Data from the GRAIL twins are allowing scientists to learn about the moon’s internal structure and composition in unprecedented detail. The two probes are being sent purposely into the moon because they do not have enough altitude or fuel to continue science operations.

For more about the first results of the GRAIL mission, read Emily Lakdawalla’s very impressive overview here.

For NASA TV streaming video, schedule and downlink information, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/ntv

The coverage will also be streamed live on Ustream at:

http://www.ustream.tv/nasajpl2

Join the conversation on Twitter by following the hashtag #GRAIL. To learn more about all the ways to connect and collaborate with NASA, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/connect

For the mission’s press kit and other information about GRAIL, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/grail

Posted by: Soderman/NLSI Staff
Source: NASA

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