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In pursuit of the Lunar X Prize, Moon Express reveals its moon-bound spacecraft

on December 6, 2013

Gigaom

Google prides itself on taking moonshots, from self-driving cars to humanoid robot workers. But it’s also behind a very literal moonshot: the Lunar X Prize, which launched in 2007 to convince private companies to invest in landing a spacecraft on the moon.

Space startup Moon Express, one of the more promising contenders, will reveal the spacecraft it plans to send to the moon tonight at the Autodesk University conference in Las Vegas. FastCoExist and FoxNews.com both report that the lander looks a bit like a Mars rover packed atop a soft donut. Instead of the legs lunar landers have traditionally set down upon, the craft will take advantage of fuel tanks fashioned into circular bumpers.

Known as the MX-1, the lander will weigh about 130 pounds and be small enough for a human to put their arms around, according to Fox.

Moon Express MX-1 Spacecraft explores the Moon and the cosmos from the lunar south pole

In future missions, Moon Express plans…

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