Astrobotic's Private Moon Lander Will Launch on a Vulcan Centaur Rocket in 2021 | 8/20/2019 | Mike Wall
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A private moon lander now has a ride for its historic 2021 mission.

A United Launch Alliance (ULA) Vulcan Centaur rocket will send Astrobotic's Peregrine lander on its way toward Earth's nearest neighbor two years from now, representatives of both companies announced today (Aug. 19).

Mission - Flight - Vehicles

The mission will be the first operational flight for both vehicles.

"We are so excited to sign with ULA and fly Peregrine on Vulcan Centaur," Astrobotic CEO John Thornton said in a statement. "When we launch the first lunar lander from American soil since Apollo, onboard the first Vulcan Centaur rocket, it will be a historic day for the country and commercial enterprise."

Mission - NASA - Lunar - Payload - Services

The mission is flying via NASA's Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) program, which this May awarded Astrobotic $79.5 million to deliver up to 14 NASA payloads to the lunar surface on Peregrine. The lander will tote a variety of other payloads as well; 16 different customers have signed up for the flight to date, representatives of the Pittsburgh-based company said.

Vulcan Centaur is the successor to ULA's workhorse Atlas V rocket, which has launched many high-profile spacecraft over the years, including NASA's Curiosity Mars rover, New Horizons Pluto probe and OSIRIS-REx asteroid mission. ULA has...
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