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The Peregrine Ion-Trap Mass Spectrometer – Which Will Fly to the Moon – Has Been Delivered to NASA

The Peregrine Ion-Trap Mass Spectrometer (PITMS), an instrument that will explore how water molecules, possibly created on the surface by the solar wind, are released and move around the Moon as the lunar surface heats up during the sunny part of the lunar day. Credit: RAL / OU / NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

A new instrument that will fly to the Moon has been delivered to NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.

The Peregrine Ion-Trap Mass Spectrometer (PITMS), led by Principal Investigator Dr. Barbara Cohen at NASA Goddard, was built and tested in collaboration with the European Space Agency, The Open University and RAL Space in the United Kingdom, and delivered to NASA Goddard in late June.

The instrument will explore how water molecules, possibly created on the surface by the solar wind, are released and move around the Moon as the lunar surface heats up during the sunny part of the lunar day.

PITMS will be delivered to the Moon by Astrobotic, one of the companies under contract for NASA’s Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) initiative. Commercial companies will deliver dozens of new instruments and technology experiments to the Moon throughout NASA’s Artemis program. Artemis missions include both robotic and human exploration on and around the Moon that will prepare humanity for our next giant leap – sending astronauts to Mars.



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