50,000 LRO orbits
Erwan MazaricoThe Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter completed its 50,000th orbit around the Moon on August 1st, 2020 !
Launched on 19 June 2009, it inserted into orbit on June 23 2009. With a period just under two hours, it took more than 11 years to achieve this milestone.
Whether you are just curious about the orbit evolution over that time period or the geometry relevant to observations from any of its 7 scientific instruments, we compiled a large table of parameter values for these 50,000 orbits that would answer many requests.
While it is of course possible to get more fidelity or more specific information by using the LRO SPICE kernels directly (see here and here), through the NAIF toolkit or the online WebGeoCalc tool, we hope this table proves useful for the ‘easier’ queries.
 Periapsis & Apoapsis Altitude vs. Time
The table is provided as a CSV (commaseparated values) ASCII file with one header line and 50,000 records, each with 70 parameters/values. These are detailed below.
==> Download the 34MB CSV file here. <==
Column Number 
Parameter Name 
Description 
Unit 
Parameter Block 
01 
OrbitNumber 
Orbit Number 
 

02 
OrbitSMA 
Orbit semimajor axis 
km 
Orbit Keplerian Elements (osculating at ascending node) 
03 
OrbitEcc 
Orbit eccentricity 
 

04 
OrbitInc 
Orbit inclination 
degrees 

05 
OrbitLonAscNode 
Orbit longitude of
ascending node 
degrees 

06 
OrbitArgPeri 
Orbit argument of periapsis 
degrees 

07 
OrbitMeanAnom 
Orbit mean anomaly (at
ascending node) 
degrees 

08 
OrbitPeriod 
Orbit period 
seconds 

09 
OrbitNormal_RAj2000 
Inertial right ascension of
orbit normal 
degrees 
Orbit Normal 
10 
OrbitNormal_DECj2000 
Inertial declination of
orbit normal 
degrees 

11 
ET_AscNode 
Time of ascending node 
seconds 
Position at ascending node 
12 
Lon_AscNode 
Longitude of ascending node 
degrees 

13 
Rad_AscNode 
Radius at ascending node 
km 

14 
ET_DescNode 
Time of descending node 
seconds 
Position at descending node 
15 
Lon_DescNode 
Longitude of descending
node 
degrees 

16 
Rad_DescNode 
Radius at descending node 
km 

17 
ET_Peri 
Time of periapsis 
seconds 
Positoin at periapsis 
18 
Lon_Peri 
Longitude of periapsis 
degrees 

19 
Lat_Peri 
Latitude at periapsis 
degrees 

20 
Rad_Peri 
Radius at periapsis 
km 

21 
ET_Apo 
Time of apoapsis 
seconds 
Positoin at apoapsis 
22 
Lon_Apo 
Longitude of apoapsis 
degrees 

23 
Lat_Apo 
Latitude at apoapsis 
degrees 

24 
Rad_Apo 
Radius at apoapsis 
km 

25 
ET_Northern 
Time of northernmost point 
seconds 
Northernmost position 
26 
Lon_Northern 
Longitude of northernmost
point 
degrees 

27 
Lat
Northern 
Latitude at northernmost
point 
degrees 

28 
Rad_Northern 
Radius at northernmost
point 
km 

29 
ET_Southern 
Time of southernmost point 
seconds 
Southerhmost positioin 
30 
Lon_Southern 
Longitude of southernmost
point 
degrees 

31 
Lat_Southern 
Latitude at southernmost
point 
degrees 

32 
Rad_Southern 
Radius at southernmost
point 
km 

33 
Lon_Sun 
Longitude of Sun 
degrees 
Sun geometry (at the time of ascending node) 
34 
Lat_Sun 
Latitude of Sun 
degrees 

35 
Rad_Sun 
Distance to Sun 
km 

36 
LST 
Local Solar Time 
Hours (024) 

37 
BetaAngle 
Angle between orbit normal
and Sun direction 
degrees 

38 
Lon_Earth 
Longitude of Sun 
degrees 
Earth geometry (at the time of ascending node) 
39 
Lat_Earth 
Latitude of Sun 
degrees 

40 
Rad_Earth 
Distance to Sun 
km 

41 
MeanAnomMoon 
Mean anomaly of the Moon in
its orbit around Earth 
degrees 

42 
AlphaAngle 
Angle between orbit normal
and Earth direction 
degrees 

43 
Duration_FullSun 
Total duration during orbit
when LRO sees the full Sun 
seconds 
Solar Illumination 
44 
Duration_PartialSun 
Total duration during orbit
when LRO sees the Sun (even partially) 
seconds 

45 
Duration_NoSun 
Total duration during orbit
when LRO sees no Sun at all 
seconds 

46 
Duration_ObscuredSun 
Total duration during orbit
when LRO does not see the full Sun 
seconds 

47 
ET_IngressSun 
Time (midpoint) of ingress
occultation of the Sun 
seconds 
Sun Ingress Occultatioin 
48 
Duration_IngressSun 
Duration of ingress occultation
of the Sun 
seconds 

49 
Lon_IngressSun 
Longitude of LRO at
(midpoint) of ingress occultation of the Sun 
degrees 

50 
Lat_IngressSun 
Latitude of LRO at
(midpoint) of ingress occultation of the Sun 
degrees 

51 
Rad_IngressSun 
Radius of LRO at
(midpoint) of ingress occultation of the Sun 
km 

52 
ET_EgressSun 
Time (midpoint) of egress
occultation of the Sun 
seconds 
Sun Egress Occultatioin 
53 
Duration_EgressSun 
Duration of egress
occultation of the Sun 
seconds 

54 
Lon_EgressSun 
Longitude of LRO at
(midpoint) of egress occultation of the Sun 
degrees 

55 
Lat_EgressSun 
Latitude of LRO at
(midpoint) of egress occultation of the Sun 
degrees 

56 
Rad_EgressSun 
Radius of LRO at
(midpoint) of egress occultation of the Sun 
km 

57 
Duration_FullEarth 
Total duration during orbit
when LRO sees the full Earth 
seconds 
Earth Visibility 
58 
Duration_PartialEarth 
Total duration during orbit
when LRO sees the Earth (even partially) 
seconds 

59 
Duration_NoEarth 
Total duration during orbit
when LRO sees no Earth at all 
seconds 

60 
Duration_ObscuredEarth 
Total duration during orbit
when LRO does not see the full Sun 
seconds 

61 
ET_IngressEarth 
Time (midpoint) of egress
occultation of the Earth 
seconds 
Earth Ingress Occultatioin 
62 
Duration_IngressEarth 
Duration of egress
occultation of the Earth 
seconds 

63 
Lon_IngressEarth 
Longitude of LRO at
(midpoint) of egress occultation of the Earth 
degrees 

64 
Lat_IngressEarth 
Latitude of LRO at (midpoint)
of ingress occultation of the Earth 
degrees 

65 
Rad_IngressEarth 
Radius of LRO at
(midpoint) of ingress occultation of the Earth 
km 

66 
ET_EgressEarth 
Time (midpoint) of egress
occultation of the Earth 
seconds 
Earth Egress Occultatioin 
67 
Duration_EgressEarth 
Duration of egress
occultation of the Earth 
seconds 

68 
Lon_EgressEarth 
Longitude of LRO at
(midpoint) of egress occultation of the Earth 
degrees 

69 
Lat_EgressEarth 
Latitude of LRO at
(midpoint) of egress occultation of the Earth 
degrees 

70 
Rad_EgressEarth 
Radius of LRO at
(midpoint) of egress occultation of the Earth 
km 
Notes:
 an orbit is defined as starting at the ascending node (i.e., at equator crossing with latitude increasing).
 the times are given as Ephemeris Time (seconds since January 1, 2000, at 12:00 TT).
 longitudes and latitudes are given in the Moonfixed frame (MOON_ME).