Intuitive Machines, SpaceX Partner for NASA Lunar Payload Mission; Gwynne Shotwell Quoted

Intuitive Machines, SpaceX Partner for NASA Lunar Payload Mission; Gwynne Shotwell Quoted
Gwynne Shotwell

Intuitive Machines is slated to launch its Nova-C lunar lander aboard SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket to carry five NASA payloads to the moon in 2021 under the Artemis program.

The Houston-based space firm said Wednesday it previously secured a $77M Commercial Lunar Payload Services award to deliver NASA’s instruments to the lunar surface for technology demonstrations and science experiments.

Nova-C is driven by a liquid methane-based engine and has a capacity of more than 220 pounds of payload. Falcon 9 will carry Nova-C from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, after which the lander will transmit data to Earth throughout a 13.5-day period on the lunar surface.

“Our partnership with Intuitive Machines is a great example of two private companies working together with NASA to advance space exploration,” added Gwynne Shotwell, president of SpaceX and 2019 Wash100 winner.

Intuitive Machines is working on including more payloads ahead of the 2021 mission.

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