NASA Invites Media to First Intuitive Machines, SpaceX Moon Launch

The Nova-C lunar lander is seen in the high bay of Intuitive Machines Headquarters in Houston, before it shipped to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida for integration with a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket for launch, as part of NASA’s CLPS (Commercial Lunar Payload Services) initiative and Artemis campaign.
Credits: Intuitive Machines

As part of NASA’s CLPS (Commercial Lunar Payload Services) initiative and Artemis campaign, media accreditation is open for Intuitive Machines’ first robotic flight to the Moon’s surface. The robotic deliveries will transport agency science and technology demonstrations to the Moon for the benefit of all.

The Intuitive Machines Nova-C lander carrying NASA science and commercial payloads will launch on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. Liftoff is targeted for a multi-day launch window, which opens no earlier than mid-February, from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Among the NASA items on its lander, the Intuitive Machines mission will carry instruments focusing on plume-surface interactions, space weather/lunar surface interactions, radio astronomy, precision landing technologies, and a communication and navigation node for future autonomous navigation technologies. A successful landing will help support the CLPS model for commercial payload deliveries to the lunar surface. As the anchor customer of CLPS, NASA is investing in lower-cost methods of Moon deliveries and aims to be one of many customers.

Media prelaunch and launch activities will take place at NASA Kennedy. Media who are U.S. citizens interested in attending in person must apply for credentials no later than 12 p.m. EST on Monday, Jan. 29, by emailing media@spacex.com.  

In May 2019, NASA awarded a task order for the delivery to Intuitive Machines. Through Artemis, commercial robotic deliveries will perform science experiments, test technologies, and demonstrate capabilities to help NASA explore the Moon in advance of Artemis Generation astronaut missions to the lunar surface, in preparation for future missions to Mars.

NASA is working with several U.S. companies to deliver science and technology to the lunar surface through the agency’s CLPS initiative. This pool of companies may bid on delivery task orders. A task order award includes payload integration and operations, as well as launching from Earth and landing on the surface of the Moon. NASA’s CLPS contracts are indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contracts with a cumulative maximum contract value of $2.6 billion through 2028.

For more information about the agency’s Commercial Lunar Payload Services initiative, see:

https://www.nasa.gov/clps

-end-

Alise Fisher
Headquarters, Washington
202-358-2546
alise.m.fisher@nasa.gov  

Nilufar Ramji
Johnson Space Center, Houston
281-483-5111
nilufar.ramji@nasa.gov

Antonia Jaramillo
Kennedy Space Center, Florida
321-501-8425
antonia.jaramillobotero@nasa.gov

First published at NASA.gov

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