Sunday, July 23, 2017

To mine the Moon, private company Moon Express plans to build a fleet of robotic landers

To mine the Moon, private company Moon Express plans to build a fleet of robotic landers:

Today, private spaceflight company Moon Express unveiled its grand plans to build a robotic outpost on the South Pole of the Moon as early as 2020. To do this, the Florida-based company wants to create a new class of spacecraft, called the MX Robotic Explorers, to land and deliver payloads to the lunar surface. The ultimate goal is to have permanent robots on the Moon that can mine the pole for water and minerals — resources that can then be sold for profit.

Moon Express has long been vocal about its desire to mine the Moon, but this is the first time the company has detailed exactly how. Its plans start with the MX-1E robotic lander, a vehicle the company is currently working on. Roughly as tall as a person, the MX-1E can land up to 66...

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