Clementine probe

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Clementine (officially called the Deep Space Program Science Experiment (DSPSE)) was a joint space project between the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization (BMDO, previously the Strategic Defense Initiative Organization, or SDIO) and NASA. Launched on January 25, 1994, the objective of the mission was to test sensors and spacecraft components under extended exposure to the space environment and to make scientific observations of the Moon and the near-Earth asteroid 1620 Geographos. The Geographos observations were not made due to a malfunction in the spacecraft.

The lunar observations made included imaging at various wavelengths in the visible as well as in ultraviolet and infrared, laser ranging altimetry, gravimetry, and charged particle measurements. These observations were for the purposes of obtaining multi-spectral imaging of the entire lunar surface, assessing the surface mineralogy of the Moon, obtaining altimetry from 60N to 60S latitude, and obtaining gravity data for the near side. There were also plans to image and determine the size, shape, rotational characteristics, surface properties, and cratering statistics of Geographos.

Clementine carried seven distinct experiments on-board: a UV/Visible Camera, a Near Infrared Camera, a Long Wavelength Infrared Camera, a High Resolution Camera, two Star Tracker Cameras, a Laser Altimeter, and a Charged Particle Telescope. The S-band transponder was used for communications, tracking, and the gravimetry experiment. The project was named Clementine after the song "Oh My Darling, Clementine" as the spacecraft would be "lost and gone forever" following its mission.


Spacecraft design

The spacecraft was an octagonal prism 1.88 m high and 1.14 m across with two solar panels protruding on opposite sides parallel to the axis of the prism. A 42-inch-diameter (1,100 mm) high-gain fixed dish antenna was at one end of the prism, and the 489 N thruster at the other end. The sensor openings were all located together on one of the eight panels, 90 degrees from the solar panels, and protected in flight by a single sensor cover.

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