September 4, 2013 1:30 pm
Updated: September 4, 2013 1:39 pm

NASA set to launch LADEE to the moon

The moon, as photographed from the International Space Station.

NASA
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TORONTO – The moon will soon be getting a visitor.

NASA’s Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) is scheduled for liftoff on Sept. 6 at 11:27 p.m. EST from Wallops Air Force Base, Va., for a mission to our nearest neighbour, the moon.

Read: Scientists detect water on moon’s surface

Though the moon has been visited many times, by both manned and unmanned missions, it is still not entirely understood.

An artist’s concept of LADEE as it approaches the moon. (NASA/Dana Berry)

Dana Berry/NASA

LADEE’s mission is to orbit the moon and gather information about the lunar atmosphere (the moon has a very, very thin layer of gases, infinitesimal when compared with Earth’s, called a surface boundary exosphere), the surface as well as lunar dust.

NASA hopes that, by understanding how the atmosphere of the moon works, it will help us to better understand how our own works.

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