Spacewatch: Boeing proposes direct flights to moon in 2024

Spacewatch: Boeing proposes direct flights to moon in 2024

US corporation says its lunar lander concept would reduce ‘complexity and risk’ of Nasa mission

Source: The Guardian

The American aerospace corporation Boeing has proposed a lunar lander to Nasa that it claims would reduce the “complexity and risk” of returning astronauts to the surface of the moon in 2024. Nasa’s original plan was that astronauts would launch from Earth and dock with a space station in lunar orbit before transferring to a lander. It even awarded the first contracts to build the Lunar Gateway in May.

Boeing’s lander concept would bypass the Lunar Gateway station, allowing astronauts arriving from Earth direct access to the moon’s surface. The concept is similar to the Apollo lunar landing missions of the 1960s. Boeing says its lander would still be capable of docking with the Lunar Gateway if needed.

The lander includes technologies developed for Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner spacecraft, which will make its first orbital flight test to the International Space Station next month. Nasa has received a number of other lunar lander proposals, and will award contracts to two teams once the proposals have been fully evaluated. The space agency has yet to say how much the 2024 landings will cost. As a result, the Artemis lunar landing programme is not yet fully funded.

Source: The Guardian

David Aragorn

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