From MoonMail to Lunar Mission One, The Moon Is Attracting NewSpace Attention

Griffin Lander: Astrobotic Technology Inc.

All those artifacts the United States left on the Moon are soon going to have company, perhaps a great deal of it. Just over a year ago, Moon Express held a gala event in Las Vegas to unveil its MX-1 Commercial Lunar Lander, the centerpiece of its effort to compete for the $30M Google Lunar XPRIZE. The current deadline for winning the prize is December 31, 2015, just 54 weeks away, although with at least two efforts drawing ever closer, it seems likely the date will slip.

Last month, the British effort, Lunar Mission One announced its goal of developing a deep drilling platform to launch to the Lunar South Pole. The effort began on the KickStarter crowdfunding platform with a goal of raising 600,000 pounds sterling. Part of the appeal is the ability to send your DNA to the Moon, as well as contribute to a digital time vault which will provide a snapshot of human civilization as it begins to step out into space. With five days to go in the campaign, the effort is nearing its goal, having amassed 527,316 pounds in potential contributions.

That isn’t all however, yesterday Astrobotic Technology Inc, which is also competing for the Google Lunar X-Prize, launched its own MoonMail program which promises to deliver small personal items to the lunar surface as one of the payloads for its Griffin lander.

The press release follows.

Program to Send Mementos to the Moon

First Service to Connect Individuals to Space

December 11, 2014

PITTSBURGH, PA – In time for the holiday and gift giving season, Astrobotic Technology Inc. announced the launch of MoonMail™, a program for the public to send mementos to the Moon on Astrobotic’s first commercial lunar mission. With the starting price at $460, this exciting new offering from Astrobotic is an opportunity to commemorate major life events – graduations, weddings, birthdays, a loved one’s memory – with a lasting symbol on the Moon.

Astrobotic’s innovative commercial approach to robotic space missions is opening access to the Moon for space agencies, universities, and companies. Today marks the beginning of a new kind of participant on the Moon – the individual.

“With MoonMail™, people from around the world can send a memento on Astrobotic’s lunar lander,” noted Astrobotic CEO John Thornton. “They’ll make history by participating in the first commercial Moon landing.”

Those interested in purchasing MoonMail™ can log onto, the designated MoonMail™ website. Each MoonMail™ participant will receive a MoonMail™ Kit that will consist of prepaid postage to mail their item to Astrobotic, along with a map of the Moon Landing Site, a photo of the Moon Pod on the Moon, and a certificate of authenticity recognizing them as a Space Pioneer on the first commercial landing to the Moon. The collected mementos will be placed inside the Moon Pod that will be attached to Astrobotic’s lunar lander, which will remain on the Moon for future generations.

Posted in: Moon, NewSpace

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