British startup Spacebit and American company Astrobotic have scheduled the mission for 2021. It will be Britain’s first ever lunar rover. Such devices were earlier sent to the Moon by the United States, China and Russia.
Great Britain is sending a robotic rover to the Moon for exploration purposes, which will be the first project of its kind for the country.
British startup Spacebit has developed a four-legged robot that will travel on the Moon’s surface, take various measurements using the sensors installed on it and collect data for future.
The robot is equipped with several cameras, one of which is intended for robot selfies. The cameras can withstand sharp swings in temperature, from +130 ° C during the day to -130 ° C at night.
An important feature of the new robotic device is its ability to navigate through the so-called “lunar lava tubes” formed as a result of volcano eruptions in ancient times. The tubes represent tunnels on the slopes of former volcanos. The upper layers of flowing lava cooled down and hardened faster than the lower ones that remained hot and liquid for a longer time and, flowing out, formed tunnels. It will be the first time a moon rover will ever travel the tubes.
Spacebit will send its robot on Astrobotic’s Peregrine lunar lander in 2021. A Vulcan rocket with Peregrine on board will be launched from the US Air Force base at Cape Canaveral in Florida.
Previous lunar expeditions were sent by the USA, Russia and China. India recently also tried to launch its lunar rover, but lost it moments before it was to land. The vehicle has apparently crashed into the lunar surface.
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