Moon Express Seeks Government Approval For First Commercial Lunar Mission

Today, Moon Express made history as the first private space company to request the U.S government to conduct a payload review of its spacecraft and plans leading to regulatory approval of a commercial mission to the Moon in 2017. Moon Express initiated the review process through a submission to the Federal Aviation Administration Office of …Read More

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New Detector Perfect For Asteroid Mining

The grizzled asteroid miner is a stock character in science fiction. Now, a couple of recent events – one legal and the other technological – have brought asteroid mining a step closer to reality. The legal step was taken when the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee passed a bill titled H.R. 2262—SPACE Act of …Read More

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Resource Prospector 2015 Field Testing Complete

Resource Prospector (RP) is an In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) capability demonstration mission currently planned to launch in 2020. Expanding human presence beyond low-Earth orbit to asteroids and Mars will require the maximum possible utilization of local materials — so-called in-situ resources. RP aims to be the first mission to validate prospecting, extraction, and analysis of …Read More

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Harnessing Power From The Moon

Can our moon help fuel an energy-hungry Earth? Work is in progress to build equipment that can demonstrate the extraction of helium-3 (3He)–helium with two protons and one neutron–and other volatiles from the moon’s resource-rich soil known as regolith. Volatiles are chemical elements and chemical compounds with low boiling points; the moon is a treasure-trove …Read More

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NASA Selects CubeSat To Search For Water Ice And Other Lunar Resources

In what scientists say signals a paradigm shift in interplanetary science, NASA has selected a shoebox-size mission to search for water ice and other resources from above the surface of the moon. Called Lunar IceCube, the mission is one of several public-private partnerships chosen under NASA’s Next Space Technologies for Exploration Partnerships (NextSTEP) Broad Agency …Read More

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Extreme Access Flyer To Take Planetary Exploration Airborne

Swamp Works engineers at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida are inventing a flying robotic vehicle that can gather samples on other worlds in places inaccessible to rovers. The vehicles – similar to quad-copters but designed for the thin atmosphere of Mars and the airless voids of asteroids and the moon – would use a …Read More

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