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NASA selects Astrobotic to transport VIPER rover to the Moon
Posted: Sat, Jun 13, 2020, 9:38 AM ET (1338 GMT)
VIPER lunar rover (NASA Ames/Daniel Rutter) NASA has selected Astrobotic to fly a rover to the south pole of the Moon in 2023 to look for water ice. Under a $199.5 million award announced Thursday, Astrobotic's Griffin lander will carry NASA's Volatiles Investigating Polar Exploration Rover (VIPER) to the south pole of the moon in 2023. VIPER, currently under development by NASA, will operate for at least 100 days, probing permanently shadowed regions of craters there for water ice that could support future human missions. NASA made the award as part of its Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) program to purchase rides on commercial lunar landers for payloads. Astrobotic was one of seven companies that submitted bids, and this is the second CLPS award won by the Pittsburgh-based company.
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