Three commercial companies got permission from NASA to send the robotic landers on the lunar surface to examine and analyze the satellite of the earth. To support the goal of sending humans to the lunar surface, the three companies will send the robotic landers to understand the surface more, and it’ll be easier for NASA to arrange the mission. Astrobotic, Orbit Beyond, and Intuitive Machines are the three companies awarded with the contract to develop a small spacecraft to carry NASA payloads to the lunar surface, which will carry out the experiments on the lunar surface.
All three companies will now start working on developing the Spacecraft to carry the payload and are expected to complete the project by 2020 or 2021 at max. These three companies were part of the Commercial Lunar Payload Services or the CLPS Program from NASA. The program from NASA Started with the aim to find commercial companies with the capability and the expertise to launch the Spacecraft in space and land it on the lunar surface. CLPS is the part of NASA’s ambitious Artemis program that has the main aim of sending humans back on the lunar surface.
But, CLPS program is focused on sending the payloads and robotic landers on the lunar surface to prepare for the mission. By sending the payload and performing the experiments, NASA will know more about the lunar surface and might find the location to land the Spacecraft with a human crew. In the official press conference, NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine said that the selected companies do share the vision and ambition of NASA and also reflects the American Ingenuity and know-how. These are the non-human missions, and only the supplied NASA payloads will be onboard of these spacecraft.