Saturday , June 25 2022

NASA select nine & # 39; companies to bid on flying to the Moon



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The US space agency on Thursday announced nine & # 39; private companies, most start-ups, which will provide over $ 2.6 billion in & # 39; contacts to build spacecraft to carry loads to moon as early as 2019.

The move is part of the purpose of NASA sending people to the Moon in the next decade, the first time since the Apollo era of the sixties and seventies.

The NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine described the announcement as "tangible progress in the return & # 39; America to the surface of the Moon to stay."

Of the group, the only known name is the aerospace giant Lockheed Martin, which has a long record & # 39; success with NASA and built the Insight installation bounded Monday in & # 39; Mars.

The others Astrobotic Technology, Inc.; Deep Space Systems; Draper; Firefly Aerospace, Inc.; Intuitive Machine, LLC; Masten Space Systems, Inc; Moon Express; Orbit and Beyond.

"The Services Payload lunar Commercial contracts are indefinite delivery, contracts & # 39; indefinite quantity b & # 39; combined maximum contract value & # 39; $ 2.6 billion over the next 10 years", said NASA statement.

NASA did not provide specifications for the bidding process, except that 'will look at a number of & # 39; when you compare the features offered, such as technical feasibility, cost and schedule. "

The decision marks a sharp change in the way & # 39; NASA operation when it comes to aspirations of the Moon & # 39; s America – though private companies have been used for many years to tranship the International Space Station, and SpaceX and Boeing are working on spacecraft to carry astronauts to the Moon as early as 2019.

Rather than run a space program funded by the government, such as Apollo, the US space agency will buy services, essentially become a customer for private businesses to build their own spacecraft.

The approach will allow NASA to cut costs, said Bridenstine.

Earlier this year, NASA canceled its only robotic vehicle being developed to explore the surface of the Moon, known as the Mission & # 39; Resource Prospector (RP).

The vehicle had been developing for about a decade to explore polar regions of the Moon.

In 2017, President Donald Trump announced that the United States again send people to the lunar surface, as a step on the way to the sea of ​​people to Mars by 2030.

The current NASA plan is to start sending equipment to the Moon, and build a lunar station orbitanti starting in 2022.

Until 2023, the first rocket to carry astronauts around the Moon, in & # 39; & # 39 orbut more, away from the Apollo missions.

Landing actual astronauts on the Moon probably will not occur until the end of 2020, the NASA said. DM

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