This article is missing information about the science and engineering required to land a spacecraft on the Moon, along with examples of how they are approached in various lander projects.September 2018)(
A Lunar lander or Moon lander is a kind of lander (spacecraft) designed to conduct a Moon landing. The design requirements for these landers depend on factors imposed by the payload characteristics and purpose, flight rate, propulsive requirements, and configuration constraints. Other important design factors include overall energy requirements, mission duration, the type of mission operations on the lunar surface, and life support system if crewed. The lack of lunar atmosphere negates the use of aerobraking, so a lander must use propulsion to decelerate and achieve a soft landing.
Several studies indicate the potential for both scientific and technological benefits from sustained lunar surface exploration that would culminate in the utilization of lunar resources, or in the development of the necessary technology to land payloads on other planets in the Solar System.
Examples of lunar landers or programs to design lunar landers include:
- Lunar Lander (space mission), an ESA mission to send an autonomous lander to the moon
- Lunar Lander Challenge, a competition to produce VTVL vehicles with sufficient delta-v to fly from the Moon to orbit
- Apollo Lunar Module, used for the 1969–1972 human spaceflight program of the United States
- LK Lander, designed for the human spaceflight program of the Soviet Union
- Altair (spacecraft), a proposed spacecraft previously known as the Lunar Surface Access Module
- Luna programme, lander spacecraft used by the Soviet Union for robotic exploration of the Moon
- Luna-Glob, a lunar exploration program by the Russian Federal Space Agency
- Mighty Eagle lander (previously called NASA Robotic Lunar Lander) current NASA program for developing a new generation of small, autonomous lunar landers
- Surveyor Program, lander spacecraft used by the United States for robotic exploration of the Moon
- Project Morpheus, a NASA research and development program test bed
- XEUS A human rated lunar lander being developed by United Launch Alliance and Masten Space Systems
- List of man-made objects on the Moon, a list of objects that have landed or crashed on the Moon
- [Lunar Lander Stage Requirements Based on the Civil Needs Data Base]. (PDF). John A. Mulqueen. NASA Marshall Space Flight Center. 1993.
- Lunar Lander Configurations Incorporating Accessibility, Mobility, and Centaur Cryogenic Propulsion Experience. (PDF) Bonnie M. Birckenstaedt, Josh Hopkins, Bernard F. Kutter, Frank Zegler, Todd Mosher. Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company. 20006.
- Robotic Lunar Lander, NASA, 2010, accessed 2011-01-10.
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