The Resource Prospector is a mission to prospect for lunar volatiles at one of the two lunar poles, as well as demonstrate In-Situ Resource Utilization on the Moon. Resource Prospector consists of a lander, a rover (provided by the Canadian Space Agency), and a rover-borne payload. The payload, the Regolith and Environment Science and Oxygen & Lunar Volatile Extraction (RESOLVE) payload, will be able to
(1) locate near subsurface volatiles,
(2) excavate and analyze samples of the volatile-bearing regolith, and
(3) demonstrate the form, extractability and usefulness of the materials.
Such investigations are important not only for ISRU but are also critically important for understanding the scientific nature of these intriguing lunar polar volatile deposits. Temperature models and orbital data suggest near surface volatile concentrations may exist at briefly lit lunar polar locations outside persistently shadowed regions. A lunar rover could be remotely operated at some of these locations for the 4-7 days of expected sunlight at relatively low cost. This paper will discuss the mission goals of Resource Prospector and present the current payload and mission design.
L2 Measurement Requirement Summary
• Make measurements from two places separated by at least 100 meters
• Surface or subsurface measurements
• Measurements from two places separated by at least 1000 meters
• Surface and subsurface measurements (auger or core)
• Measurements in and sample acquired from shadowed area
• Demonstrate ROE
• Make subsurface measurements (auger) at least eight (8) locaXons across 1000 m
(point to point) distance
• Make subsurface measurements (core and process) at least four (4) locaXons across
1000 m (point to point) distance
• Provide geologic context
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