Friday, September 14, 2007

Moon 2.0 Google Lunar X PRIZE Contest

Google seems like having many interests. The company has just decided to put up a US$30 million cash for a large contest known as Google Lunar X PRIZE, which is also known as Moon 2.0 competition. The purpose of this decision is to trigger a race to put the first privately financed space mission on the moon. US$ 20 million cash is credited to the team that has finished the task by the end of 2012. The other US$ 10 million is set aside for a second place company (US$ 5 million) and other ‘bonus’ prizes (US$ 5 million).

Google is taking a part in this contest because of its partnership with the X PRIZE Foundation, which is the foundation that aims to create radical breakthroughs for the benefit of humanity. The company creates and manages prize competitions that inspiring and driving innovators to solve nowadays-grand challenges. X PRIZE Foundation tries to bring revolution though competition.

This is not a cheap competition. The team would need to build a roaming spacecraft that would be enough to survive a landing and be able to complete a set of tasks. Each rover would have to be equipped with high-definition video and still cameras. The mission of this competition is to land a robotic rover on the moon. To win the prize, the rover will have to travel at least 500 meter and beam back video and other data to Earth.

Related source: Google Lunar X PRIZE

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