Nasa has chosen the cars astronauts might drive on the Moon

The US space agency shortlisted three projects for the vehicle, which will ship to Earth’s satellite with the Artemis Mission in 2030.

Nasa has selected three projects from Venturi Astrolab, Lunar Outpost, and Intuitive Machines to develop the next lunar terrain vehicle (LTV). The three companies’ proposals will undergo a year-long feasibility study, and eventually, NASA will choose one to send to the Moon with the Artemis Mission.

Austronats will be able to drive the vehicle to move around on the Moon’s south pole surface and use it to transport materials, tools and samples. The machines should also be capable of fully autonomous and remote driving, enabling NASA to use them even when astronauts are not on the Moon.

“We will use the LTV to travel to locations we might not otherwise be able to reach on foot, increasing our ability to explore and make new scientific discoveries,” said Jacob Bleacher, chief exploration scientist in the Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “With the Artemis crewed missions, and during remote operations when there is not a crew on the surface, we are enabling science and discovery on the Moon year-round.”

The US space agency will acquire the winning project as a “service from industry” and specified that the indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract will last until 2039 and have a maximum potential value of $ 4.9 billion.

Opening image: The Lunar Terrain Vehicles (LTV) selected by NASA. Courtesy Venturi Astrolab, Lunar Outpost, Intuitive Machines

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