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Last updated on April 24, 2014 at 1:21 EDT

LRO Fourth Anniversary

June 20, 2013

Four years ago, NASA made a long promised return visit to a place so legendary in the history of space exploration that it felt like a reunion with a long lost relative. With the liftoff of the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO), NASA made a bold statement about its commitment to exploring Earth’s closest neighbor, as well as other parts of the solar system. In the years since it rose on its rocket, LRO has amassed a stunning array of data on a wide range of subjects. From vital research about the formation of the early solar system, to fundamental research about the structure and natural history of the Moon itself, LRO continues to deliver state-of-the-art information about a place that almost every human being has pondered as it drifts through our skies and our collective imaginations.

credit: NASA