© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Employees stress wash the brand of NASA on the Car Meeting Constructing on the Kennedy House Heart in Cape Canaveral, Florida, U.S., Might 19, 2020. REUTERS/Joe Skipper
(Reuters) – NASA on Tuesday stated it had picked U.S. rocket builder Firefly Aerospace to place a lander on the moon’s far facet in 2026, below a virtually $112 million contract.
“The business lander will ship two company payloads, in addition to communication and knowledge relay satellite tv for pc for lunar orbit, which is an ESA (European House Company) collaboration with NASA,” the U.S. house company stated.
The contract is a part of the Artemis program’s Business Lunar Payload Companies (CLPS) initiative – an effort to deploy privately constructed lunar landers to review the moon’s floor earlier than individuals land there within the subsequent few years.
NASA handed an identical award of $73 million to spacecraft software program agency Draper final 12 months to ship science and know-how payloads to the far facet of the moon in 2025.
Firefly, which reached orbit for the primary time in October, had seen years of problem, together with a 2017 rescue from chapter by Ukrainian-born entrepreneur Max Polyakov’s Noosphere Ventures.
NASA awarded Cedar Park, Texas-based Firefly $93.3 million in 2021 to hold a collection of 10 science investigations and know-how demonstrations to the moon in 2023.
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