Subject line: Study of the lunar surface.

Responsibility of the mission: ESA

Date of launch: September 27th, 2003

End of mission: September 3rd, 2006



SMART-1 is the first European space shuttle that travelled and orbited around the Moon. This is the first mission of the ESA Small Mission for Advanced Research in Technology programme, for advanced research in technology. It used solar-electric propulsion to travel to the Moon, carrying a set of miniaturized instruments onboard. As well as experimenting new technologies SMART-1 analysed the chemical elements of the lunar surface, providing key data to study the theory according to which the Moon was formed after the violent collision of a smaller planet with Earth, 4 and a half million years ago. Launched on September 27th, 2009, SMART-1 arrived in the lunar orbit on November 15th, 2004. After reaching its scientific goals, the mission ended on September 3rd, 2006.


Scientific goals

The main objective of the mission was searching for evidence of lunar water ice and building a three-dimensional map of the lunar surface.

‣ News


Italy, France and Germany signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the ‘SPACEFOUNDERS’ European program ‣

The Italian Space Agency (ASI), the French Space Agency (CNES) and the University of the Bundeswehr in Munich (UniBW) are committed to cooperating for ”SpaceFounders”, the European New Space accelerator launched in 2021 by CNES with UniBw MORE...

FRIDAY 12 MAY 2023

The fjords of Greenland observed by PRISMA ‣

The images shown on this page are elaborations of the visible and infrared bands of an acquisition over Greenland in May 2021 MORE...


The desertification of the Aral Sea ‣

This composition is obtained by processing a PRISMA image acquired in January 2021 on the Aral Sea area MORE...


JUICE is en route to unveil Jupiter’s secrets and Italy is onboard ‣

The European space science mission JUICE successfully launched into space.  State-of-the-art instruments developed and funded by the Italian Space Agency are featured aboard the probe. The Italian Agency has coordinated the participation in Juice of several entities, enterprises, and other national space agencies MORE...


Rivers in the tropical forest observed by PRISMA ‣

Iguazu Falls area observed by the Italian satellite MORE...