SpaceX has won a $ 2.9 billion Nasa contract to land the Americans on the moon
Elon MuskSpaceX plans to bring the American astronaut back to the surface of the moon, winning the multimillion-dollar technology of rival Jeff Bezos at one of the most notable awards in the commercial space race.
On Friday, NASA appointed SpaceX as the sole contractor to build the next lunar spacecraft and make a single demonstration visit to the moon, as soon as 2024.
SpaceX offered to build and exploit its $ 2.9 billion in land, which was “significantly” less than Bezos ’Blue Source opponent offer, according to a NASA document obtained by the Washington Post. A third company, Dynetics, submitted an even larger offer.
The selection of a single contractor has broken with NASA’s recent practice to select two opposing projects for the most important elements of its space program, and the agency’s tight budgetary pressure is reflected as it tries to return to the moon for the first time. Since 1972.
“We have awarded the contract to SpaceX on a realistic budget for the next few years,” said Mark Kirasich, head of Nasa.
The choice of SpaceX risks widening the gap with other commercial spaces and Nasa is increasingly dependent on Musk’s private space company. As well as being a pioneer in the new era of fixed-cost commercial space programs, SpaceX was the first to carry cargo to the International Space Station, and last year human spaceflight returned to US soil for the first time since 2011 when it took on NASA astronauts. ISSra.
NASA officials said they are conducting a review to find out how they can stay competitive in the development of human landings, including a round of consultations with the rest of the commercial space industry. The discussions were designed to achieve a “sustainable” range of visits to the moon after the landing of the SpaceX single-seater, they said.
Bezos wanted to join some of the traditional powers of the U.S. space industry, along with Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Draper in the face of a project to build a lunar lander.
SpaceX will use its developing Starship to land on the moon. Although the company plans to eventually use the spacecraft for the entire voyage between Earth and Mars, the landing announced on Friday will only take two astronauts from orbit around the moon to the surface before returning.
The mission The giant SLS rocket being developed by Boasa, along with the Orion spacecraft from Lockheed Martin, is part of NASA’s Artemis program to allow astronauts to orbit the moon’s orbit. Despite Starship’s ability to replace these two programs, Kirasich said Nasa has no “intention to change our architecture” and will continue with his plans to reach the moon.
SpaceX has had a number of horrific accidents in its first efforts to prove that Starship is safely landing this year. Lisa Watson-Morgan, NASA’s moon program manager, said of the problems: “Because we have areas to work on, we’re going to work on them. But right now everything looks good.”