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NASA selects nine United States companies to vie for moon program funding

30 November 2018

In Paris, the French space agency CERN said everything seems fine for the moment, and that it is up to Nasa to communicate with the SEIS quake-sensing instrument.

"When we go to the Moon, we want to be one customer of many customers in a robust marketplace between the Earth and the Moon", Mr Bridenstine said.

NASA has invited nine companies to bid on delivery services to the moon as part of its greater Moon to Mars mission.

This new plan hopes to allow for a diverse array of customers send their payloads to the Moon.

The goal is to get small science and technology experiments to the surface of the moon as soon as possible.

The Trump administration also directed NASA to seek and encourage additional private sector participation. Last December the president signed the Space Policy Directive-1 which gave instruction to NASA to prioritize missions to both the moon.

We will remind, 49 years ago, American astronaut Neil Armstrong the first of the humans stepped on the lunar surface. The awards are all indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contracts, and it's not unusual for the actual value of such awards to be far less than the maximum value.

Each consortium will file bids with NASA, which will issue contracts based on price, time to launch, and technical feasibility. "We call it the McCandless Lunar Lander", Hopkins said.

Apart from building a human colony on Mars, scientists are also planning to build up a colony on the moon, and as per Russian scientists they will make it happen within 20 years.

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The Space Directive prompted NASA to establish The Exploration Campaign, a national and agency effort focused on three core domains: low Earth orbit; lunar orbit and surface; and Mars and other deep space objectives.

But with this program, NASA is looking to replicate the success of SpaceX, the private rocket company led by Elon Musk.

"The intent to return to the moon is to do some science exploration, to land and explore the lunar surface and then finally pave the way for eventual human return to the moon", Dent said in a phone interview.

"Lunar payloads could fly on these contracted missions as early as 2019", NASA said in an earlier news release.

Astrobotic, Moon Express, Masten Space Systems, Deep Space Systems, Draper, Firefly Aerospace, Intuitive Machines, and Orbit Beyond have all been picked to provide services to NASA on future lunar missions.

Going to the moon isn't new for Draper.

Much like NASA's Commercial Resupply Services and Commercial Crew Program, NASA wouldn't own these vehicles, it would purchase their services from the firms that produced them. SpaceX and Northrop Grumman, formerly Orbital ATK, have been making space station shipments since 2012.

On Thursday NASA announced it had selected nine companies to help achieve its lunar goals.

NASA selects nine United States companies to vie for moon program funding

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