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U.S. plans historic return to the Moon for first time since 1972

U.S. plans historic return to the Moon for first time since 1972 Illustrative photo (Photo: Getty Images)
Author: Daria Shekina

After 50 years since the last Apollo mission, the American private company Astrobotic is gearing up to return the US to the Moon. They've announced the upcoming launch of the spacecraft Peregrine, scheduled for December 24th, with plans for a lunar landing, according to ScienceAlert, known for articles on scientific research, discoveries, and outcomes.

The CEO of Astrobotic, John Thornton, notes that the Peregrine will not carry a crew but will be equipped with specialized NASA instruments to study the lunar environment ahead of the Artemis manned missions.

The launch is scheduled from Florida using the first rocket of the industrial group ULA, named Vulcan Centaur. Subsequently, the probe will take several days to reach lunar orbit, and before attempting a landing, it will have to wait until January 25th for suitable lighting conditions at the target site.

The landing will be autonomous, without human intervention, but it will be monitored from the control center of Astrobotic.

In the spring, the Japanese startup iSpace attempted to become the first private company to land on the Moon, but the mission ended in failure.

Earlier, we reported on NASA showcasing unique images of the Milky Way.

Also, read about scientists discovering eight more planets potentially hospitable for life.