First US Commercial Robotic Mission to Lunar Surface Set to Launch on Monday

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First US Commercial Robotic Mission to Lunar Surface Set to Launch on Monday
First US Commercial Robotic Mission to Lunar Surface Set to Launch on Monday

Africa-Press – Liberia. WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – The first US unmanned robotic commercial space mission to the surface of the moon is scheduled to be launched on Monday, NASA officials have announced.

“As part of NASA’s CLPS (commercial Lunar payload services) initiative and Artemis program, United Launch Alliance (ULA) and Astrobotic are targeting 2:18 a.m. EST [Eastern Standard Time] [on] Monday, January 8, for the first commercial robotic launch to the moon’s surface,” officials said during a Thursday news conference.

ULA’s Vulcan booster carrying Astrobotic’s Peregrine lunar lander is scheduled to take off from Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida, the officials said.

Peregrine will land on the moon on February 23 and the NASA payloads aboard the lander will help the agency develop capabilities needed to explore the moon under Artemis and in advance of human missions on the lunar surface, the officials said.

Peregrine will carry 21 scientific payloads including six planned to reconnoiter the surface of the moon in preparation for the planned Artemis III manned mission landing that is currently scheduled for 2025 or 2026, the officials added.

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