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N328KF
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Google To Give $25mil For First Private Moon Rover

Fri Sep 14, 2007 3:58 am

This is pretty awesome of Page and Brin. Anyone notice that it's the tech geeks (Page/Brin, Bezos, Allen, Musk, Carmack) who are doing the most to back private spaceflight?

Quote:
The foundation whose $10 million prize spurred privately funded rocketeers to send a small piloted craft to the cusp of space in 2004 has issued a new challenge: an unmanned moon shot.

With the audacious new contest comes a much bigger prize, as much as $25 million, paid for by Google, the ubiquitous Internet company.

The "Google Lunar X Prize" was announced Thursday in Los Angeles at Wired Magazine's NextFest. The contest calls for entrants to land a rover on the moon that will be able to travel at least 500 meters, or 1,640 feet, and send high-resolution video, still images and other data back home.

Original: Google offers prize for a lunar landing

[Edited 2007-09-13 20:59:59]
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
dl021
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RE: Google To Give $25mil For First Private Moon Rover

Fri Sep 14, 2007 7:06 am

May be one of the reasons they've got an in with the NASA people at Moffett Federal Airfield. They donate their time and resources to further space exploration in meaningful ways.
Is my Pan Am ticket to the moon still good?
 
Ozair
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RE: Google To Give $25mil For First Private Moon Rover

Fri Sep 14, 2007 8:23 am

I love hearing about stuff like this, its what the obscenely wealthy should be doing with their money more often!
 
DfwRevolution
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RE: Google To Give $25mil For First Private Moon Rover

Fri Sep 14, 2007 1:47 pm

Seesh, let's just try getting a private vehicle in orbit by 2012....  Yeah sure
 
wvsuperhornet
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RE: Google To Give $25mil For First Private Moon Rover

Fri Sep 14, 2007 5:04 pm

I would rather them pay $25 miliion for someone to acually land on the moon and start a base there, sending a rover seems like a waste to me since we have already landed there. At least pay the money for something spectacular.
 
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N328KF
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RE: Google To Give $25mil For First Private Moon Rover

Fri Sep 14, 2007 11:08 pm

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 3):
Seesh, let's just try getting a private vehicle in orbit by 2012....

I think getting a private vehicle into orbit is easy. Getting a private manned vehicle into orbit is what the hubbub is about. This is different, and is still easier than getting a man into and out of orbit. Bigelow does have a prize for that, though.
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
Stretch
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RE: Google To Give $25mil For First Private Moon R

Fri Sep 14, 2007 11:29 pm

All I can say to this is two things.

1. Glad they're trying to push for more private space development.

2. Go Rutan!
 
DfwRevolution
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RE: Google To Give $25mil For First Private Moon Rover

Sat Sep 15, 2007 2:26 am

Quoting N328KF (Reply 5):
I think getting a private vehicle into orbit is easy.

Then I'm afraid you are very wrong. Orbit is a vastly more complicated procedure than most people think.

SpaceX has been trying for several years now with deep pockets and a core of professional engineers contracts. They have the lowest cost model of anyone in the Western World and they still haven't orbited an unmanned payload after two test flights. Even after you get something into orbit, it will need enough fuel mass to perform a second burn to send the payload on trans-lunar trajectory.

There is a difference between ambition and insanity. No private payload will reach the moon before 2012 unless it's riding on a government-sponsored launch vehicle. In which case, the 25 million prize will mean very little.

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