NASA Crashes Probes Into Moon

Intentional crashes are part of hunt for water
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 9, 2009 7:05 AM CDT
This image provided by NASA shows the first image taken of the moon from the Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite Friday morning Oct. 9, 2009.   (AP Photo/NASA)
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(Newser) – NASA has successfully bulldozed two spacecraft into the moon's south pole in a search for hidden ice, but without the promised live photos. First, a 2.2-ton empty rocket hull smacked the moon's south pole at 7:31am. Four minutes later, the camera-laden space probe made its plunge to examine the kicked-up dust.

The smaller probe had five cameras and four other scientific instruments, and NASA had touted live photos on its website. But those images didn't surface. NASA officials say they are sure the two probes crashed but can't yet explain the photo glitch. Pictures were live until seconds before impact. The intentional crashes had been expected to kick up miles of lunar dust.