After the controversy with blue origin After the POT Chose to SpaceX As a partner in developing the spacecraft that will return humans to the Moon, the US agency has launched a new open call for any American company. This does not mean that he has severed ties with the company. Elon Musk, of cours. They just made the decision to add youn second lander to what had already been planned for the Artemis program. And for that they will choose the one that seems to them the best proposal, on the sole condition of coming from the United States.
NASA announced yesterday, March 23, the opening of this call, in which it recalled that new landing modules must have the ability to dock with the bridge. It is a space station that will be placed in lunar orbit as part of the Artemis program.
This program plans to bring humans back to the Moon, although in a much more modern way. As expected, they will go up on our satellite for the first time a woman and a person of color. This is a NASA project in collaboration with the space agencies from Europe, Canada, Japan, Mexico, Brazil and Australiawith the private collaboration of SpaceX by Elon Musk. Will another company be joining soon? Time will tell. For now, the doors are open.
Looking for private companies to join SpaceX
When NASA began planning the development of the vehicle that would take astronauts to the lunar surface, it decided to choose two of the three companies. The candidates were SpaceX, Blue Origin and Dynetics. However, budget restrictions meant they could only choose one, so they ended up opting for Elon Musk’s company.
This did not suit Blue Origin, hence they decided sue nasa, although in the end the request was rejected by the courts. SpaceX had become NASA’s only private partner to bring humans back to the Moon. A one-time contract worth $2.9 billion was concluded with them. A large sum, of course.
However, shortly after the Senate Appropriations Committee introduces a bill that would force NASA to choose a second collaborator. So far, that has not been the case. But he received funding worth $1.195 billion. With him they opened the term for the development of this new lunar lander.
NASA’s future plans for the Moon
From NASA they announced that they needed a vehicle that would take astronauts from orbit to the surface of the Moon beyond the Mission Artemis IIIwho will be the one to take this first new batch of humans to our satellite.
Before that there will be a unmanned trialalthough this one will only participate in SpaceX. It is expected to be in the middle of this decade. Therefore, it seems that the moment of truth, with the ship with humans on board, it will be shifted from the scheduled dates. It was supposed to be in 2025, but it might take a bit longer. The same goes for SpaceX, which also had to delay some of its private plans. In fact, Elon Musk recently gave a later date to send humans to Mars.
What is clear is that NASA is looking to the future and not focusing its efforts on a single mission. As they explained in a press release, their collaboration with SpaceX and this second yet undetermined company “will pave the way for future recurring transport services for astronauts on the Moon.
After all, one of Artemis’ goals is to place a base on the Moon, which will also serve as gas station for future missions to other places, such as Mars. SpaceX is already part of this almost science fiction dream. We’ll soon find out who else is riding the space train.