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NASA hands out $43 million for ‘Tipping Point’ tech for the Moon and Mars

1 Oct 2019, 08:39 UTC
NASA hands out $43 million for ‘Tipping Point’ tech for the Moon and Mars
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Among the 14 companies NASA has selected as partners in working toward exploration of the Moon and Mars is Astrobotic, which wants to build a CubeRover. Image credit: Astrobotic/Carnegie Mellon University
NASA is funding more than a dozen technology projects that could aid exploration of the Moon and Mars, focusing on issues including cryogenics, energy production and independent mobility.
The agency selected 14 U.S. companies to receive a total of £35.2 million ($43.2 million), with individual allotments ranging from £1.1 million to £8 million ($1.3 million to $10 million). Each company submitted a proposal to NASA’s Tipping Point program. The funding comes from NASA’s Artemis program, a push to land humans on the Moon by 2024.
“These are important technologies necessary for sustained exploration of the moon and Mars,” Jim Reuter, associate administrator of NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate, said in a statement. “These promising technologies are at a ‘tipping point’ in their development, meaning NASA’s investment is likely the extra push a company needs to significantly mature a capability.”

The largest chunk of money, £8 million ($10 million), went to Blue Origin to support a project focusing on cryogenic technology. Specifically, the company wants to test out a new ...

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