SELENE (SELenological and ENgineering Explorer), better known in Japan by its nickname Kaguya (かぐや) after the legendary Japanese moon princess, was the second Japanese lunar orbiter spacecraft. The main scientific objectives of the mission were to: study the origins of the Moon and its geologic evolution, obtain information about the lunar surface environment, and perform radio science, especially precise measurement of the moon’s gravity field.

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Five nations have placed scientific spacecraft in orbit around the Moon: U.S., U.S.S.R (now Russia), Japan, China, and India.

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