Musk’s SpaceX wins NASA award to supply planned lunar space station
NASA on Friday picked a brand new house capsule from Elon Musk’s SpaceX to ferry cargo and provides to the company’s deliberate lunar house station, a vital constructing block to its plans to construct a everlasting put up on the moon and mount future missions to Mars.
SpaceX will get a portion of a $7 billion NASA contract to make use of its greatest rocket, Falcon Heavy, to ship a brand new “Dragon XL” spacecraft to the Lunar Gateway, an outpost NASA plans to construct that can orbit the moon someday throughout the subsequent decade.
The Dragon XL spacecraft, the most recent variant in Musk’s lineup of so-called Dragon cargo and astronaut capsules, will carry analysis provides that can assist future astronauts on the floor of the moon acquire lunar samples, a NASA announcement mentioned.
The Dragon variant, which might be docked on the orbital station for six to 12 months per mission, is “optimized to hold greater than 5 metric tons of cargo to Gateway in lunar orbit,” SpaceX mentioned in a tweet.
The monetary worth of the award was not given. But it indicators a key growth within the U.S. house company’s Artemis program to return to the moon – unveiled by Vice President Mike Pence a 12 months in the past this week — and offers a win for Musk’s house firm as it really works to launch its debut manned mission to house this summer time.
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