31st Annual Meeting of the DPS, October 1999
Session 38. The Moon and Mercury
Contributed Oral Parallel Session, Wednesday, October 13, 1999, 11:00am-12:00noon, Sala Pietro d'Abano

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[38.05] Lunar Prospector's Impact in a Cold Trap to Detect Water Ice

D. B. Goldstein (U. Texas at Austin), E. S. Barker (McDonald Observatory), R. S. Nerem, J. V. Austin (U. Texas at Austin), A. Storrs (STSCI), A. Stern (SWRI), T. Bida (Keck), T. Morgan (NASA-HQ), A. B. Binder (Lunar Research Institute), W. C. Feldman (LANL)

On July 31, 1999 the Lunar Prospector spacecraft is to be driven into the floor of a permanently shadowed crater at -88.7S, 42E with sufficient energy that frozen volitiles in this cold trap may be released. We will report on the modeling of the impact event and the attempts at telescopic observations of the vapor and dust plumes which may be detected. Preliminary modeling suggested that detectable levels of H2O and its photodissociated byproduct OH could be visible. An observational program by the above authors using HST, Keck 1, and McDonald Observatories was coordinated with other world-wide observing teams to capture this unique event.

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