The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter and Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Spacecraft Approach the Moon

(CNN) -- Two NASA spacecraft closed in on the moon Tuesday morning -- one to send streaming video to Earth as it swings past the moon, the other to map the lunar surface from orbit, the space agency said.

The two probes were to begin collecting data after nearing the moon's orbit about 5:30 a.m. ET.

By about 8:20 a.m. E.T., the space agency will begin streaming footage on the Internet.

The mission is the first in NASA's plan to return to the moon, then travel to Mars and beyond, the space agency said.