Next U.S. moon landing will be by private companies, not NASA

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced Thursday that nine U.S. companies will compete to deliver experiments to the lunar surface. The space agency will buy the service and let private industry work out the details on getting there, he said.


The goal is to get small science and technology experiments to the surface of the moon as soon as possible. The first flight could be next year; 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the first manned moon landing.



The nine companies, representing seven states, are:

  • Astrobiotic Technology Inc., Pittsburgh;
  • Deep Space Systems, Littleton, Colorado;
  • Draper, Cambridge, Massachusetts;
  • Firefly Aerospace Inc., Cedar Park, Texas;
  • Intuitive Machines, Houston;
  • Lockheed Martin, Littleton;
  • Masten Space Systems Inc., Mojave, California;
  • Moon Express, Cape Canaveral; and
  • Orbit Beyond, Edison, New Jersey.

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