Clementine lifts off

ClementineNASA’s Clementine unmanned spacecraft is launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base toward Earth’s moon, the first American spacecraft to aim at that destination since the 1970s. Intended to map the moon with multispectral cameras and obtain a fresh gravity map, Clementine is a huge technological advance over NASA’s last lunar vehicle, featuring a 32-bit image processing system with solid state data storage. Clementine takes a leisurely trajectory to reach its destination, flying by Earth twice before reaching the moon a month after launch.