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  Intuitive Machines Nova-C lunar lander (2021)

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Author Topic:   Intuitive Machines Nova-C lunar lander (2021)
Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 43580
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 05-31-2019 12:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Intuitive Machines release
Nova-C Lunar Lander

Intuitive Machines' Nova-C lunar lander draws direct heritage and lessons learned from NASA’s Project M lunar lander and Project Morpheus experience.

Project M and its terrestrial counterpart, Project Morpheus, were designed, developed and tested by NASA Johnson Space CEnter to demonstrate new technologies for planetary landing included autonomous hazard avoidance, precision landing, and high performance cryogenic liquid Oxygen (LOX) and liquid Methane (LCH4) integrated propulsion. The core team that was instrumental in the success of the Morpheus lander left government service and founded Intuitive Machines.

Key Features:

  • 100 kg payload capacity to the surface of the moon
  • (250Kbps-6Mbps) 24/7 Data coverage
  • At least 200 watts of power on the surface
  • Payload mounting locations per customer
  • Modular and adaptive design
  • Soft touchdown ~ 1m/ second
  • Hazard avoidance navigation
  • Land anywhere on the moon
  • Over 9 square meters of payload mounting surface

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 43580
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 05-31-2019 01:41 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Intuitive Machines release
Intuitive Machines Selected by NASA for Robotic Return to the Moon in 2021

Intuitive Machines will join NASA's new era of lunar exploration with a robotic landing on the Moon in 2021, under a contract award announced today (May 31) by NASA.

The firm, fixed-price contract for no more than $77,247,500, with an additional incentive of $2,500,000, calls for Intuitive Machines to develop, launch and land its Nova-C spacecraft on the lunar surface with a payload of NASA and private experiments. The mission will be the first under NASA's Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) program. The award places Intuitive Machines on a path to become the first private U.S. company to land a spacecraft on the Moon.

"We are grateful for the tremendous privilege and honor to be awarded this contract. I have dreamed of going to the moon since, as an 11-year-old boy, I saw Neil Armstrong's historic first step onto that new world. Today, Intuitive Machines begins a journey back to the moon in the culmination of my boyhood dream," said Dr. Kam Ghaffarian, Executive Chairman of Intuitive Machines.

"All of us at Intuitive Machines have great passion for space and exploration," said Steve Altemus, CEO of Intuitive Machines. "Our experience in developing autonomous systems, precision navigation, and cryogenic propulsion lends itself perfectly to the challenge of landing Nova-C on the Moon. In our first mission, we provide lunar science payload delivery and technology advancement for NASA, academia, and our strategic partner Boeing."

"Our vision is to take the challenge of this historic step with an eye toward a permanent presence on the Moon," said Dr. Tim Crain, Intuitive Machines' Lunar Architect. "We are working with Boeing to extend core Nova-C technologies of propulsion and automation to the development of large scale and human landers."

"We are very excited about this incredible opportunity to once again put the United States on the surface of the Moon," Altemus adds. "We have a strong team of brilliant minds motivated to accomplish this mission. We have worked relentlessly over the past few years, and we will continue to do so until we land the Nova-C on the Moon and put boots on the ground shortly thereafter."

The lunar payload and delivery service business of Intuitive Machines encompasses small, medium and large landers, as well as the development of lunar infrastructure that will pave the way for planetary missions. The 2021 Nova-C mission will have a payload capacity of 220 pounds (100 kg) and transmit scientific data back to Earth during 13.5 days of activity on the Moon's surface.

Nova-C uses a first-in-class, deep-throttling liquid oxygen/methane engine that is scalable to landers of different sizes. Intuitive Machines also is working to enable space exploration beyond the Moon with its development and implementation of space-storable cryogenic propellants.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 43580
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 10-02-2019 01:55 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Intuitive Machines release
Intuitive Machines selects SpaceX to launch Nova-C to the Moon in 2021 on a Falcon 9 rocket

Houston-based Intuitive Machines selected SpaceX to launch its lunar lander, Nova-C, to the Moon in 2021 on a Falcon 9 rocket.

"Intuitive Machines is thrilled to sign with SpaceX to take Nova-C on its first mission to the moon," said Intuitive Machines President and CEO, Steve Altemus. "SpaceX's ability to make low-cost quality lunar transport is paramount to completing NASA's Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) contract and Intuitive Machines becoming the first commercial company to land on the Moon."

NASA awarded Intuitive Machines the first mission task order under the CLPS contract, May 31, 2019. It calls for Intuitive Machines to develop, launch and land Nova-C on the lunar surface with a payload of NASA-provided instruments that will conduct science investigations and demonstrate advanced technologies on the lunar surface.

Intuitive Machines reviewed proposals from multiple launch providers and ultimately selected SpaceX for its proven record of reliability and outstanding value.

Nova-C will launch on a Falcon 9 rocket from historic Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

"We're honored that Intuitive Machines selected Falcon 9, SpaceX's tried and true workhorse, for this pioneering mission to the Moon, said Gwynne Shotwell, president of SpaceX. "Our partnership with Intuitive Machines is a great example of two private companies working together with NASA to advance space exploration."

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 43580
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 04-13-2020 09:53 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Intuitive Machines release
Launch Date and Landing Site Selected For 2021 Moon Mission

Intuitive Machines engineers selected an area in Oceanus Procellarum near Vallis Schröteri as the landing site for its upcoming IM-1 lunar mission with an anticipated launch date in October 2021.

View the entire press kit here.

Vallis Schröteri, also known as Schröter's Valley, is the largest valley on the Moon (comparable in size to the Grand Canyon) and is surrounded by Oceanus Procellarum, the largest lunar maria on the Moon. Oceanus Procellarum, also called the Ocean of Storms, covers over 10 percent of the entire Moon and has a diverse array of geological features. NASA considered a site near Vallis Schröteri for Apollo 18; now, IM is taking up the baton to conduct the initial survey.

Nova-C, the first lander wholly developed by a private company, will deliver commercial cargo and five NASA-provided payloads to the lunar surface. These payloads will conduct scientific research and technology demonstrations as part of NASA's Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) program, in preparation for sending astronauts back to the Moon in 2024.

The Nova-C Flight Dynamics team considered every available detail within one degree of the 25N, 50W location to identify an ideal 200-meter landing site for the mission. The chosenlanding site is flat, free of large craters and rocks, and has abundant sunlight throughout the 14-day lunar "day."

"This kind of lunar landing assessment hasn't been done since the 1972 Apollo mission," said IM President and CEO, Steve Altemus. "The tremendous effort our team has put forth to fully characterize our descent approach, landing site options and lighting conditions to ensure mission success is a paramount task required to fulfill our obligation to our private payload customers and NASA."

"Our Flight Dynamics team really outdid themselves evaluating trajectories and landing conditions during each launch window," said IM Vice President of Research and Development, Dr. Tim Crain. "They managed to design this landing site that is supported across our primary and secondary four-day launch windows. No one in Houston has looked as seriously at landing sites for a funded lunar landing mission in almost 50 years."

The site is very interesting from a scientific perspective. Like other sinuous rilles (valleys), Vallis Schröteri is believed to have been formed by a collapsed lava tube from volcanic material that flowed from a crater (Cobra Head) located on the elevated Aristarchus Plateau into the low Oceanus Procellarum. In addition, the surrounding mare may include materials from the beginning of the Copernican Period (one billion years ago).

Nova-C will launch on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Pad 39A at the NASA Kennedy Space Center, the Apollo Saturn V launch pad. The launch is nominally scheduled for October 11, 2021 with multiple subsequent launch opportunities. This launch epoch allows for a near-optimal transfer with a 6-day transit from the Earth to the Moon and provides 14 days of sunlight at the target landing site after landing.

The Intuitive Machines Nova-C mission will test an automated Precision Landing and Hazard Avoidance (PLHA) landing system paving the way for NASA astronauts to land on the lunar surface by 2024.

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