NASA Opens Second Phase of $3.5 Million Lunar Excavation Competition

NASA Opens Second Phase: NASA has been busy lately this week, the agency is partnering with a new company call Deep Space Industries to launch a robotic spacecraft from Florida to the moon. This groundbreaking mission was just one of a series of recent developments for NASA, which recently announce that it’s now accepting proposals for its Lunar Exploration and Science Program.

Background of the Lunar Challenge

Since the end of the Apollo program humans have been unable to explore further than Earth’s moon. With recent advances in technology, there is a renewe interest in returning to the moon and exploring its surface. The Lunar Challenge is a $2 million competition sponsore by. NASA to spur innovation in lunar exploration methods.

The first phase of the challenge was to develop a low-cost method for landing a robot on the moon. The second phase of the challenge is to devise a mission plan that would send a manned spacecraft to explore and return data from one or more locations on the moon. Some of the entries in Phase II of the challenge include using inflatable habitats as platforms for exploration, creating human-power rovers, and using laser communications to relay data back to Earth.

Break the Ice II Technical Challenge

The $. million Break the Ice II Technical Challenge is NASA’s second-ever competition for innovative ideas for using robotic technology to explore and excavate ice from the lunar surface. Phase 1 of this challenge. Was announced in January 2019. And sought proposals for using autonomous vehicles to map, survey, and analyze moon ice resources.

Now in its second phase, the challenge seeks proposals for using robotic technology to excavate ice from the lunar surface. Proposals may use any type of robot and must be able to operate on the moon’s surface. The goal is to develop a plan that will enable astronauts to collect an initial cache of lunar ice samples by 2024.

NASA Opens Second Phase of $3.5 Million Lunar Excavation Competition

With a total budget of $10 million, Phase 2 will award up to $3 million per proposal. Select proposals will undergo further development. And testing before being submitt to NASA for approval. If select. They will be fund through a contract. With an external partner or agency.This contest is open to all U.S. citizens and institutions of higher education, regardless of affiliation with NASA. For more information.

NASA Has Two Winners in the Second Phase of Break the Ice Lunar Challenge

In the second phase of the Break the Ice Lunar Challenge, NASA has announced two winners: Team Indus from India and Astrobotic from the United States. The teams will receive a total of $2 million to continue. Their work on developing technologies for a human mission to the moon.

The competition. Was design to accelerate. The development of space exploration technologies by challenging teams from around. The world to design, build. And test a robotic excavation system capable of breaking through Antarctic ice and landing on the moon. The first phase of the challenge end in October 2018 with three entries qualifying for final judging.

NASA Opens Second Phase team Indus is led by Dr. Rahul Narayan, an entrepreneur and space researcher. Who has previously work on projects such as India’s first lunar rover mission. Astrobotic is made up of engineers. With experience in aerospace engineering, telecommunications, software development, robotics, and project management.

Both teams have made significant progress since qualifying for final judging in October 2018. Team Indus complete its final design review in December 2018 and is now working on building a prototype machine. Astrobotic has develope a ground-base simulation tool that can predict.  How different excavation strategies would work on the surface of the moon.

They are also continuing work on. Their spacecraft design.This competition has demonstrate that there is great potential for robotic exploration of our natural satellite and that it can be done quickly and inexpensively using existing technology. It has also shown. That international cooperation is essential if we want.

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