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Technology of Lunar Exploration

Technology of Lunar Exploration

Clifford Cumming


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Progress in Astronautics and Rocketry, Volume 10: Technology of Lunar Exploration is an overview of the technical base of the lunar exploration problem. This volume is organized into six sections encompassing 35 that follow the various stages of accomplishment of a lunar mission, involving landing on or orbiting the moon and returning to the earth.
The first section is devoted to the problem of trying to define the lunar environment, emphasizing the theories of the lunar environment as it relates to the internal structure of the moon. This section also describes some activities to achieve a reasonable theory concerning what might be encountered in some of the previous lunar flight programs. The second section explores the problems associated with the limitations imposed upon lunar missions by the launch vehicles and launching facilities. The third section looks at the spacecraft systems and techniques required for lunar missions, particularly the technology and specific subsystems in relation to the requirements imposed by specific lunar mission objectives. The fourth section deals with the actual landing on the moon and the subsequent surface operations, while the fifth section covers the lunar launch, return, flight re-entry, and subsequent landing on earth. The sixth section reports the status of the projects that represent the United States lunar exploration program, which integrates the technologies developed in the preceding sections into certain discrete projects.