LUNAR ORBITER MISS ION A DESCRI PTION

As Approved by t h e

Ad Hoc Surveyo$rbiter

Utilization Committee

September 29, 1965
Amended

June 1, 1966

Prepared by t h e Lunar Orbiter Project Office Langley Research Center Langley Station, Hampton, Va.

NAT IONAL AERONAUT ICS AND SPACE ADM I N ISTRAT ION
I

I

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Page

1.
I
I

Introduction
Objectives, Ground Rules and Constraints Orbit Design

1

1
I

11. I 11.
IV. V. VI.

3

7
10

Site Selection
Lunar Terrain Assessment Site Evaluations Comparison of Mission with Criteria

14 30
34

I

V I 1.

1 .

INTRODUCTION

The Lunar O r b i t e r P r o j e c t and the Surveyor P r o j e c t have a joint g o a l of obtaining s u f f i c i e n t topographic and geologic d a t a of t h e l u n a r s u r f a c e t o
I

c o n f i r m Apollo LEM landing g e a r d e s i g n and to l o c a t e L E M landing s i t e s having slopes l e s s than 6' and protuberances l e s s than 1 / 2 - m e t e r high o r

d e p r e s s i o n s l e s s than 1 / Z - m e t e r deep on the f r o n t f a c e of the moon. The L u n a r O r b i t e r contribution i s topographic i n f o r m a t i o n of up t o

10,000 k m

2 of the lunar s u r f a c e a t resolutions approaching one m e t e r and
The S u r v e y o r w i l l

3 0 , 000 k m 2 at n e a r l y eight m e t e r s resolution p e r flight.

contribute s o i l m e c h a n i c s data and s m a l l s c a l e r e l i e f of r e l a t i v e l y s m a l l a r e a s surrounding the Surveyor site. Obviously the s t r a t e g y f o r s i t e

s e l e c t i o n m u s t balance the O r b i t e r and Surveyor capabilities against the Apollo re q u i r erne nts . The p u r p o s e of t h i s document i s to p r e s e n t t h e L u n a r O r b i t e r M i s s i o n A

as approved by the Ad Hoc S u r v e y o r / O r b i t e r Utilization Committee on
S e p t e m b e r 29, 1965 and a m e n d e d J u n e 1, 1966. The approved m i s s i o n

r e f l e c t s the inputs f r o m many discussions among p e r s o n n e l i n the Lunar O r b i t e r P r o j e c t Office, Bellcomm, the U. S . Geological Survey, the S u r v e y o r P r o j e c t Office, NASA H e a d q u a r t e r s , and the Manned S p a c e c r a f t Center. B e l l c o m m published a Lunar O r b i t e r M i s s i o n Planning R e p o r t which

2

suggested that the e a r l y O r b i t e r m i s s i o n s s a m p l e the v a r i o u s lunar t e r r a i n types which look promising f r o m the e a r t h . The USGS defined and mapped

t h e s e promising t e r r a i n types and m a t e r i a l l y a s s i s t e d i n the selection of the s i t e s f o r Mission A . The Surveyor I h a s been included a s a Mission A s i t e ,

and wherever feasible, proposed future S u r v e y o r s i t e s have been included.

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III.

ORBIT DESIGN

The t r a n s i t time ( e a r t h t o moon) for the Lunar O r b i t e r s p a c e c r a f t is a p p r o x i m a t e l y 90 h o u r s . Upon r e a c h i n g the moon t h e s p a c e c r a f t will deboost Following

into a n e l l i p t i c a l or bit t h a t h a s a perilune altitude of about 200 k m .

a waiting period of s e v e r a l days during which t i m e t h e o r b i t w i l l be defined and the l u n a r physical p r o p e r t i e s w i l l be c a l i b r a t e d , the s p a c e c r a f t will t r a n s f e r to a n o r b i t with a m i n i m u m perilune altitude of 46 k m .

It i s f r o m
Some of

t h i s o r b i t t h a t the p r i m a r y photographic s u r v e y will be p e r f o r m d .

the significant o r b i t a l p a r a m e t e r s and the r e a s o n f o r t h e i r s e l e c t i o n a r e itemized in Figure 1 .

It i s noted i n the f i g u r e that t h e perilune altitude v a r i e s between 46 and
60 k m . T h i s v a r i a t i o n 1i n e a r l y affects the photographic r e s o l u t i o n obtainable The v a r i a t i o n i s c a u s e d by e a r t h

and is t h e r e f o r e of c o n s i d e r a b l e i n t e r e s t .

effects and l u n a r g r a v i t a t i o n a l a n o m a l i e s ( J 3 ) . F i g u r e 2 shows t h e perilune altitude v a r i a t i o n due to the e a r t h effects and the e a r t h plus moon effects. In addition t o the e a r t h and moon effects on the p e r i l u n e altitude, the photog r a p h i c r e s o l u t i o n is a l s o degraded when photographing s i t e s which a r e located off p e r i l u n e . g r a p h i c altitude. This i s the d i r e c t r e s u l t of a n i n c r e a s e i n t h e photo-

The altitude change a s a function of t r u e a n o m a l y

(angle off p e r i l u n e ) is shown i n F i g u r e 2.

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IV.

SITE SELECTION

The ground r u l e s for Mission A define t h a t it s h a l l be a t e r r a i n sampling m i s s i o n which e x a m i n e s the S u r v e y o r I s i t e , examines promising future S u r v e y o r s i t e s , and concentrates on the Apollo zone. tool f o r f i r s t - o r d e r s i t e selection. Figure 3 r e p r e s e n t s a

This f i g u r e shows the a p p r o x i m a t e

distribution of promising Surveyor s i t e s , the significant m a r e and highland a r e a s within the Apollo zone, and the S u r v e y o r i s i t e . distributed throughout the a r e a . C r a t e r s a r e randomly

F r o m this f i g u r e the a p p r o x i m a t e a r e a s to

place Lunar O r b i t e r Mission A s i t e s c a n b e s e e n . The exact locations of t h e s i t e s f o r M i s s i o n A w e r e s e l e c t e d by i t e r a t i n g between the geological considerations and the ground r u l e s and c o n s t r a i n t s staying within the bounds defined by the o r b i t a l design. initially chosen within the Apollo zone. Ten s i t e s w e r e

As a r e s u l t of the a c t i o n of the Ad Hoc

S u r v e y o r / O r b i t e r Utilization Committee, one of t h e s e s i t e s (the c r a t e r L a n s b e r g ) was dropped and replaced by S u r v e y o r s i t e 5 - 5 0 . Since t h e m i s s i o n

was proposed and approved, t h e s u c c e s s f u l S u r v e y o r I m i s s i o n h a s been performed. It h a s been proposed and approved t h a t photography of the

Surveyor I s i t e be added to Mission A by deleting s i t e s A-8, A-9, and A-10 and adding sites A-8.1 and A - 9 . 1 . Site A - 9 . 1 i s t h e S u r v e y o r I s i t e and

11

s i t e A - 8 . 1 i s a relocation of s i t e A-8 to prevent i n t e r f e r e n c e with photography of the Surveyor I s i t e . The approved s i t e locations f o r M i s s i o n A a r e s h a v n

on F i g u r e 4 and a r e tabulated i n the USGS site evaluations s e c t i o n of this document .

It h a s not been d i s c u s s e d , but it is considered t h a t a 1 6 - f r a m e sequence
of photography will be taken i n the i n i t i a l o r b i t and a t l e a s t two f r a m e s r e a d out s u c h t h a t the s y s t e m p e r f o r m a n c e c a n be evaluated b e f o r e t r a n s f e r t o the photo o r b i t . The location of the s i t e i s i n M a r e Smythii and the s i t e is

designated A-0.

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V.

LUNAR TERRAIN ASSESSMENT::: A. Gener a1 Statement

The s e l e c t i o n of Lunar O r b i t e r photographic s a m p l e a r e a s h a s been b a s e d p r i m a r i l y on the 1:1,OOO,OOO-scale U. S. Geological S u r v e y Lunar T e r r a i n Map of the e q u a t o r i a l zone ( l a t . 10°N

-

10°S; long. 60°E

-

6OOW).

Some 46 t e r r a i n units a r e delineated i n t h i s a r e a at a n a v e r a g e r e s o l u t i o n of one k i l o m e t e r . The data and analytical techniques employed i n the d i s -

crimination of t h e s e units a r e of fundamental i m p o r t a n c e to the Unmanned Lunar O r b i t e r M i s s i o n s and a r e b r i e f l y d e s c r i b e d i n the following pages.

B.

Data S o u r c e s

The data s o u r c e s which provide t h e b a s e s of morphological mapping and quantitative definition a r e categorized into two fundamental types :

1.

Qualitative a. b. c. d. A. C . I . C . c h a r t s E a r t h - b a s e d photography; Lunar Atlas, P e a s e , Herbig
U. S. G. S. 1:1, 000,000-scale geologic maps

II Ranger VII, V I , and I X photography

2.

Quantitative : a. Slope component m e a s u r e m e n t s
This s e c t i o n 1s p r e l i m i n a r y and has not been edited or r e v i e w e d for conformity

:::By D r . Lawrence Rowan,
I

u. S .

Geological S u r v e y

wlthu

s Geologlcalsurvey standards and n o m e n c l a t u r e

15 b. c. Relative relief data C r a t e r density studies

The USGS T e r r a i n Map, t h e r e f o r e , i s the product of c a r e f u l analysis and c o r r e l a t i o n of t h e s e qualitative and quantitative d a t a . units The b a s i c t e r r a i n

-

m a r e , uplands, and c r a t e r s

-

a r e described i n n u m e r i c a l t e r m s which The

have i m p o r t a n t applications t o both engineering and scientific problems.

p r e s e n t paucity of high and m o d e r a t e resolution data i n m o s t t e r r a i n types is emphasized h e r e , because resolution i s a highly influential f a c t o r i n r e l a t i v e roughness, and consequently, i n s i t e selection and c e r t i f i c a t i o n .

Qualitative Data
0

Geologic mapping on the 1:1,OOO,OOO-scale A. C. I. C . c h a r t s h a s been i n p r o g r e s s since 1961, and h a s r e s u l t e d i n a t l e a s t p r e l i m i n a r y m a p s of the e n t i r e a r e a covered by the Lunar T e r r a i n Map.

It i s i m p o r t a n t to e m p h a s i z e

t h a t geologists have studied the morphological details of this a r e a carefully, using the b e s t available photography and seeing conditions. The resulting

geologic m a p s ( F i g u r e 5), t h e r e f o r e , provide v e r y significant t e r r a i n data. The geologic boundaries a r e frequently t r a n s f e r r e d d i r e c t l y to t e r r a i n boundaries. Exceptions to this s t a t e m e n t do o c c u r , however, when chronolo-

gically s i m i l a r geologic units have different morphological and r e l a t i v e roughness c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s . Additional value i s contained i n t h e s e geologic

16
m a p s and i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s , s i n c e they provide the n e c e s s a r y knowledge concerning genetic p r o c e s s e s which will guide extrapolations of t e r r a i n roughness and bearing s t r e n g t h data. C u r r e n t geological investigations

using Ranger photography will have considerable in fluence on i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s concerning t h e s e fundamental genetic p r o c e s s e s and t h e formulation of discriminating c r i t e r i a .

Quantitative Data Photometrically d e r i v e d slope component m e a s u r e m e n t s a r e t h e p r i m a r y quantitative s o u r c e of information concerning l u n a r morphology. Approxi-

m a t e l y 150, 0 0 0 m e a s u r e m e n t s distributed among 48 individual s a m p l e a r e a s constitute t h e r a w d a t a which have been t r e a t e d s t a t i s t i c a l l y , i n o r d e r t h a t units of differential r e l a t i v e roughness might be n u m e r i c a l l y defined.

f Briefly stated, the s t a t i s t i c a l a n a l y s i s c o n s i s t s o v i s u a l a p p r a i s a l s of
his t o g r a m s and examination of t h e functional r e l a t i o n s between r e l a t i v e roughness and v a r i o u s s t a t i s t i c a l p a r a m e t e r s . Both a p p r o a c h e s provide

b a s e s upon which judgments o f r e l a t i v e r o u g h n e s s c a n be m a d e and a roughness scale established, Typical slope frequency distributions a r e shown i n F i g u r e 6. Opposing

end points of the r e l a t i v e roughness s p e c t r u m a r e r e p r e s e n t e d by slope component s a m p l e s f r o m M a r e Nubium ( M a r e I-A) and H e r s c h e l (Sculptured

17

Highlands 11-D).

Clearly, the s m o o t h e r m a r e is c h a r a c t e r i z e d by a "peaked" One of a l a r g e

curve, while the rougher uplands yield a v e r y low c u r v e .

number of the i n t e r m e d i a t e types is r e p r e s e n t e d by the "Bode B" s a m p l e

(11-B).

It is apparent that slope frequency distribution c u r v e s provide a

rapid m e a n s of evaluating r e l a t i v e roughness both i n s p e c i f i c s a m p l e a r e a s and f o r extrapolation p u r p o s e s . The differential d e g r e e s of peakedness of h i s t o g r a m s can be efficiently e x p r e s s e d b y the s t a n d a r d deviation,

(?-

.

This p a r t i c u l a r p a r a m e t e r e x p r e s s e s

the d i s p e r s i o n of slope component values, while the mean, the c e n t r a l tendency of the slope component population.

X

Ab'

defines

XAb

These values,

v e r s u s C A b have proven t o be efficient d i s c r i m i n a t o r s of t e r r a i n types ( F i g u r e 7). The t r a n s i t i o n i n t e r m s of relative roughness f r o m smooth m a r e Additionally, upland b a s i n s (11-A)

t o rough uplands is c l e a r i n this d i a g r a m .

group closely and s u g g e s t a fundamental morphologic difference when c o m p a r e d t o the m a r i a 1 s a m p l e s . The above d i s c u s s i o n only briefly outlines the g e n e r a l value of slope s t a t i s t i c s a s quantitative d e s c r i p t o r s of lunar topography a t the one-kilometer s c a l e of resolution. F u r t h e r a n a l y s i s has suggested that definition of subAdditional quanThe

units is a l s o quite f e a s i b l e a t t h i s and higher r e s o l u t i o n s .

t i t a t i v e s o u r c e s have been examined, especially i n the highland u n i t s .

18

photometric slope m e a s u r e m e n t s a r e m o s t efficient i n a r e a s of gentle topography. Relative r e l i e f m e a s u r e m e n t s , therefore, provide a n i m p o r t a n t

s u p p l e m e n t a r y p a r a m e t e r i n t h e highland t e r r a i n units ( F i g u r e 8 ) . and The XR

,TR

values accompanying t h e s e d i a g r a m s c l e a r l y define the r e l i e f Unit 11-A is excluded, s i n c e it is

c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of 11-B, 11-C, and 11-D.

c h a r a c t e r i z e d by v e r y low relief i n t h e s e highland b a s i n s . Increasing albedo i n the m a r i a h a s been f r e q u e n t l y equated with i n c r e a s i n g c r a t e r density, and t h e r e f o r e with i n c r e a s i n g r e l a t i v e roughness. Figure 9

d e m o n s t r a t e s a h i g h e r c r a t e r density i n the r a y - c o v e r e d a r e a s , a s opposed to rayless maria. The albedo in the r a y e d a r e a i n c r e a s e s proportionally.

T h e s e points s u g g e s t t h a t the r a y - c o v e r e d a r e a s i n the m a r i a a r e r o u g h e r t h a n t h o s e which have no r a y d e p o s i t s . This g e n e r a l i z a t i o n h a s been supported

by s l o p e frequency s t u d i e s and analysis of R a n g e r s VII, VIII, and IX photography. S i m i l a r r e l a t i o n s have been d e m o n s t r a t e d i n the light and d a r k

m a r i a of Mare S e r e n i t a t i s .

C.

Resolution

Resolution, o r slope length, is c o n s i d e r e d s e p a r a t e l y h e r e f r o m t h e above discussed p a r a m e t e r s b e c a u s e of its profound effects on r e l a t i v e roughness. Generally, the unresolved r e l i e f a t any point on the l u n a r s u r f a c e

19

can be added to that which can be resolved and h a s been m e a s u r e d .

It i s

implied, t h e r e f o r e , t h a t s t a t i s t i c a 1 , p a r a m e t e r s used t o e x p r e s s roughness will i n c r e a s e with d e c r e a s i n g slope length. the Ranger VI1 o n e - m e t e r resolution frame, hypothesis ( F i g u r e 10). Slope frequency a n a l y s i s of

P3:979,

confirms this

Lightly ray-covered maria yields a n a r i t h m e t i c and i s c h a r a c t e r i z e d by a peaked frequency At one-meter resolution, however, the Significantly, the frequency

mean, XAb, of about 1. O o ,

c u r v e a t one-kilometer resolution.

c u r v e i s low and the XAb = 4. 5 6 O ( F i g u r e 10). c u r v e is v e r y s i m i l a r to that shown for the uplands unit 11-D i n F i g u r e 6 . The functional relationship between slope length and t h e m e d i a n f o r the a v e r a g e m a r i a i s shown i n F i g u r e 11. It i s important, however, to note t h a t detailed relationships f o r t h e s e p a r a m e t e r s a r e unknown and m u s t be defined for e a c h m a j o r t e r r a i n type.

D.

T e r r a i n Calibration

E m p h a s i s h a s been placed on t e r r a i n a n a l y s i s techniques, r e s u l t s , and interpretations. Lunar morphology i s , however, controlled i n a complex High resolution

way by volcanic p r o c e s s e s , i m p a c t p r o c e s s e s , and e r o s i o n .

photography of a r e a s which provide maximum i n f o r m a t i o n concerning t h e s e p r o c e s s e s is n e c e s s a r y t o a m o r e complete understanding of l u n a r morphology. The r a t i n g s c h e m e (A, B, C ) used i n Section VI f o r M i s s i o n A r e f l e c t s the i m p o r t a n c e of t h e s e a r e a s to t e r r a i n calibration. Since R a n g e r s VII, VIII,

20

and I X did not provide high r e s o l u t i o n c o v e r a g e of d a r k maria, upland t e r r a i n units and c r a t e r units, p a r t i c u l a r attention has been given t o t h e s e a r e a s . F u r t h e r development of extrapolation techniques f o r m a j o r t e r r a i n units is l a r g e l y dependent upon adequate high resolution c o v e r a g e of t h e s e a r e a s . T e r r a i n units considered to be e s p e c i a l l y c r i t i c a l f o r t e r r a i n c a l i b r a t i o n p u r p o s e s a r e listed below i n t e r m s of i n c r e a s i n g r e l a t i v e roughness a t the one-kilometer resolution s c a l e : I-B

-

DarkMare Average M a r e

I -A

I-c
I -1v
11-A 111-B-2 11-B I11-A - 3 11-D

- Ridged M a r e

-

Ray-Covered M a r e

- Highland B a s i n s

-

F l o o r s of Deformed C r a t e r s Subdued Uplands Crater Rims Sculptured Highlands

Although the upland and c r a t e r units a r e r o u g h e r than the g e n e r a l m a r e types a t one-kilometer resolution, they a r e i m p o r t a n t in t e r r a i n c a l i b r a t i o n studies. These a r e a s m a y a l s o p r o v e to b e of significantly h i g h e r b e a r i n g Brief descriptions concerning t e r r a i n

s t r e n g t h than the m a r e m a t e r i a l s .

c a l i b r a t i o n and r e l a t i v e r o u g h n e s s a r e given i n Section V I .

22

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VII.

COMPARISON O F MISSION WITH CRITERIA

The approved Lunar O r b i t e r Mission A h a s been p r e s e n t e d and i t i s of importance to c o m p a r e the r e s u l t s with the objectives, ground r u l e s , and constraints. F i g u r e 12 gives a s u m m a r y of the t e r r a i n s a m p l e s and i t is

s e e n t h a t a r e a s o n a b l e balance i s obtained, that i s , s i x m a r e s a m p l e s which a r e the highest p r i o r i t y type, four highland s a m p l e s , and one c r a t e r s a m p l e .

It i s of i n t e r e s t to note that a f t e r the second s i t e one m a r e and one highland
s a m p l e have been obtained. This i s i m p o r t a n t to t h e t e r r a i n c a l i b r a t i o n

objective in c a s e of e a r l y s p a c e c r a f t f a i l u r e . F i g u r e 1 3 shows the s i t e distribution f o r e a c h t e r r a i n type. s i t e s a r e reasonably d i s t r i b u t e d between about 42OE and 4 3 O W . The m a r e

The m o s t

promising highland a r e a s e x i s t only in the e a s t e r n portion of the Apollo zone and t h r e e s i t e s a r e distributed i n this a r e a . The one c r a t e r s i t e i s s e l e c t e d

n e a r t h e c e n t r a l p a r t of the Apollo zone and a l l s e l e c t e d s i t e s a r e located within the Apollo zone. Six of the nine s i t e s a r e proposed S u r v e y o r s i t e s and s i t e 9 . 1 i s the Surveyor I site. Of the t h r e e non-Surveyor s i t e s , one ( s i t e 3 ) could become

a Surveyor s i t e and the other two ( s i t e s 1 and 2) a r e i n the e x t r e m e e a s t e r n p a r t of the Apollo zone which i s not a c c e s s i b l e to S u r v e y o r .

35

Because of the film handling constraints, it is i m p o r t a n t to r e v i e w the
film utilization for Mission A.

F i g u r e 14 shows a film budget s u p e r i m p o s e d

on a m i s s i o n profile.

The conclusion i s that the film r e q u i r e m e n t s to p e r f o r m In f a c t , t h e r e

Mission A a r e within the total film capacity of the s y s t e m . a r e 10 f r a m e s i n e x c e s s of the r e q u i r e m e n t .
t

F o r gener a1 infor ma tion, the

nine s i t e s and the nominal lighting conditions a r e shown on F i g u r e 15. The conclusion of the c o m p a r i s o n of the m i s s i o n with the c r i t e r i a i s that the Lunar O r b i t e r Mission A s a t i s f i e s the objectives, ground r u l e s , and c o n s t r a i n t s and i s within the capabilities of the Lunar O r b i t e r s y s t e m .

36

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