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    NASA lost contact with its US$32.7 million spacecraft after it left Earth’s orbit on its way to the moon. The space agency restored connections with the craft on Wednesday as it is headed to the moon to test out a lopsided lunar orbit. The craft was launched on June 28 from New Zealand and spent nearly a week circling the Earth.

    NASA said “the spacecraft is in good health and operated safely on its own while it was out of contact with Earth.” The space agency is still investigating the cause of the communications drop-off. 

    The satellite is only the size of a microwave and 55-pounds and will be the first spacecraft to tet out this oval orbit. NASA wants to place a Gateway outpost that will serve as a staging point for astronauts before they descend to the moon. 

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