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Two NASA spacecraft crash into the moon

NASA's Gravity Recovery And Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) mission came to an end as planned yesterday when its two spacecraft de-orbited and crashed into the surface of the moon.

The first of the orbiters, Ebb, hit a predetermined mountain near the lunar north pole, with its twin, Flow, hitting nearby 30 seconds later.

Both were travelling at a speed of 1.7 kilometres per second.

The two craft were launched in September of 2011.

Following a successful mission mapping the gravity of the moon, the washing machine-sized spacecraft were nearly out of fuel.

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