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Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter
NASA announced plans to crash the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter into the moon, twice, in 2008. The primary mission of the $73 million, 2-ton probe, shown in this illustration, will be to search for water that could be used for manned missions.
Crash landingWhen it reaches the moon, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter will break into two stages. The first stage will crash into a crater, and the remaining satellite will study the plume and fly through it to detect its composition.
When its studies are complete, the second stage will crash into the moon and be analyzed by other lunar orbiters and Earth-based oberservatories. The craft will also perform lunar mapping duties.