Tomorrow, Earth’s Atmosphere Will Incinerate Astrobotic’s Lunar Lander

Peregrine Astrobotic 1
Astrobotic’s lunar lander will be reentering Earth’s atmosphere over a remote part of the South Pacific Ocean tomorrow afternoon, bringing to a close the failed moon landing mission. Pittsburgh-based Astrobotic has been providing frequent updates on the Peregrine lunar lander since it launched on United Launch Alliance’s Vulcan Centaur on January 8. The source of the anomaly was an ongoing propellant leak, which were preventing Peregrine from pointing its solar arrays at the sun. But by the time it reenters the atmosphere tomorrow, Peregrine will have operated in space for over ten days. Due to the propellant leak, Astrobotic said it had devised a two-step process to maneuver the spacecraft to the projected trajectory for reentry.