"We want to be first customers, not only customers", Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA's head of the science mission directorate, said during the event. The company will provide any number of contributions towards NASA's mission to the Moon.
The outline published by NASA to fulfill the Space Policy Directive, the "Exploration Campaign", focuses on three core domains for development: low Earth orbit, lunar orbit and surface, and Mars, with the option of other deep space objectives being integrated.
The CLPS programme, which is operated by Nasa's science mission directorate, is meant to buy end-to-end payload services between Earth and the lunar surface using fixed priced contracts.
Todays announcement marks tangible progress in Americas return to the Moons surfaceto stay, said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. The funding was part of $44 million' worth of awards NASA gave out to companies developing for space exploration. SpaceX and Northrop Grumman, formerly Orbital ATK, have been making space station shipments since 2012. Maintaining a permanent human presence in lunar orbit will require a lot of support services that NASA can't handle on its own.
The first stage will include technology testing through 2025, and the second will see the first manned flights to the moon between 2025 and 2035.
The providers will compete on cost and innovation so NASA can accomplish more than ever, he said. The innovation of Americas aerospace companies, wedded with our big goals in science and human exploration, are going to help us achieve incredible thingsonthe Moon and feed forward to Mars.More news: Dad's Punishment for Bullying Goes Viral
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NASA unveiled a set of new "Moon partnerships" with nine US companies at a press conference Thursday afternoon.
In many ways, CLPS resembles NASA's Commercial Crew Program, which uses billions of dollars to coax private companies (like SpaceX and Boeing) to capable of to and from orbit. These missions pave the way for a human return to the moon, as well as enable human exploration of Mars and beyond.
Almost 50 years after Neil Armstrong became the first human to step onto the surface of Earth's satellite, President Trump signed a mandate to send USA astronauts back to the planetoid.
NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said Thursday that nine American companies will compete to carry experiments to the surface of the moon.
Citing worries over components such as parachutes, the first flight has been pushed back to an unspecified date later in the spring, casting doubt on whether a crewed flight could occur this year from United States soil. Insight arrived at Mars on Monday. However, only 12 astronauts have ever stepped foot on the lunar surface.
Even Bridenstine said that while NASA wants the companies to succeed, the space agency is certain some of the efforts will fail.