It has been a long time since the US last touched down on the moon. In fact, we haven’t done it since 1972 when the Apollo 17 mission carried astronauts with it on a successful expedition. Now, the United Launch Alliance (ULA) is looking to repeat history starting with tomorrow’s launch.
The launch will be taking place tomorrow at 2AM (Eastern Time) in Cape Canaveral, Florida and will be carrying a lunar lander called “Peregrine” developed by Astrobotic Technology. Although it isn’t an official NASA mission, it is sponsored by the agency as it pushes to keep the US in the ranks of those successfully landing modern technology on the Moon.
Pending good weather and no anomalies during checks, ULA’s Vulcan Centaur rocket will be carrying the load into orbit where the lander will eventually detach and begin its journey. Once it arrives, it will cruise the lunar orbit for awhile until it is ready to land itself next month on February 23rd.
This is a big deal for the United Launch Alliance as it really needs to land this launch successfully. As for the lander itself landing, that will be an important feat for the ULA, Astrobotic Technology, and the US. The alliance is made up of Boeing and Lockheed Martin. Allowing the companies to achieve what neither of them was able to do alone (at least this quickly).
You can follow everything live here: