A brand new photograph of Odysseus launched by NASA illustrates simply how rough the lander’s journey to the Moon has been, shining a light-weight on its spunky resilience towards all odds.

Taken on February 22, the day the lander touched down on the Moon, the photograph reveals Odysseus, affectionately known as “Odie,” with a clearly damaged leg on the lunar floor. Whereas the photograph may not look all that encouraging, Intuitive Machines defined that an ideal storm of occasions managed to work in Odie’s favor. Not solely did Odysseus’ legs take up the affect of the touchdown, however its liquid methane and liquid oxygen engine occurred to nonetheless be throttling, which offered the lander with stability.

“This can be a image of Odie on the floor of the Moon, touching down, with its engine firing. You [can see] the touchdown gear, items have damaged off there on the left of the picture,” Steve Altemus, the CEO and co-founder of Intuitive Machines, stated in a NASA press convention on Wednesday. “The touchdown gear did what it was purported to do and defend[ed] the lander because it landed on the floor.”

Such a shaky touchdown did affect Odysseus, although. The lander is barely tipped on its facet, which has affected its ability to charge its solar panels. In its present place, Odysseus can solely obtain daylight on its horizontal photo voltaic panel. Intuitive Machines estimated that the lander had solely about 10 to twenty hours of energy left on Tuesday.

The corporate will now proceed to place Odysseus to sleep and plans to wake it up in about three weeks throughout the photo voltaic midday, which is when the lander’s photo voltaic panel will start to obtain daylight as soon as extra.

Nonetheless, it’s unclear whether or not Odysseus will get up when Intuitive Machines prods him from his nap. Officers defined that the lander and its electronics usually are not designed to resist the freezing night time on the Moon, the place temperatures can drop right down to -298 levels Fahrenheit (-183 levels Celsius).

Even when Odysseus doesn’t get up, the mission is already thought-about successful. Intuitive Machines turned the first private company in history to carry out a soft landing on the Moon and marked the primary return of the U.S. to the lunar floor because the Apollo 17 mission of 1972. Waking up Odysseus could be an additional deal with.

In a manner, Odysseus additionally introduced the Apollo mission again to the Moon. The lander is adorned with a patch of a small American flag, which was initially ready to launch on future Apollo missions within the Seventies that by no means got here to be. NASA donated the flag to Odysseus.

“It was a licensed piece of flight {hardware}. We took that American flag and proudly put it on Odysseus and carried to it the Moon, prefer it ought to have been performed 52 years in the past,” Altemus, the Intuitive Machines CEO, stated. “I’m actually pleased with that.”

This article originally appeared on Gizmodo.


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