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Caption This Week 4 (8/22 thru 8/26) | by NASA Goddard Photo and Video
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Caption This Week 4 (8/22 thru 8/26)

Winning caption: "Early attempts to carve ownership rights into the moon were largely unsuccessful." (Jordan, from New Jersey)


What's really going on: These two beams originate from Goddard's Laser Ranging Facility. No, we're not trying to destroy the moon (or a Death Star, as many caption submissions suggested). We use these lasers to keep track of NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, managed and operated here at Goddard and currently in orbit of the moon. The lasers can pinpoint LRO's exact location within about four inches. That's amazingly accurate, given LRO is about 250,000 miles away!


This photograph was taken on Sept. 10, 2010, when Goddard celebrated the first International Observe the Moon Night.


› Original image on Goddard's center Flickr site

› More information on the Laser Ranging Facility


Credit: NASA Goddard/Debbie McCallum


Honorable Mentions


Prototype-testing for new, live-action Space Invaders game.


"...why the same thing we do every night, Pinky: Try to destroy the moon!"


"There, that should hold it in place for another week or two."


We loved the variants on "That's no moon..." from Star Wars and "Don't cross the streams" from Ghostbusters, but there were so many that we couldn't pick just one of each!


See the whole set of "Caption This" images here.


NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission.


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This image was created using Polaroid Generator V1.


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Taken on September 18, 2010