Astrobotic, Carnegie Mellon Awarded NASA STTR Funding

Astrobotic lander (Credit: Mark Maxwell)
Astrobotic lander (Credit: Mark Maxwell)

PITTSBURGH (Astrobotic PR) – Astrobotic Technology Inc., in partnership with Carnegie Mellon University, announces $375,000 in contract awards through NASA’s Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program. The three proposals will develop sensing and navigation technologies to expand capability for resource exploration on and under the surface of the Moon, Mars, and other planetary bodies.

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Masten’s Xombie Tests Sensors for Future Lunar Mission

Launch sequence collage of Masten Space Systems' XA-0.1B Xombie suborbital technology demonstration rocket during a NASA-sponsored flight and landing at the Mojave Air and Space Port in Mojave, California. (Credit: NASA Photo/Tom Tschida)
Launch sequence collage of Masten Space Systems’ XA-0.1B Xombie suborbital technology demonstration rocket during a NASA-sponsored flight and landing at the Mojave Air and Space Port in Mojave, California. (Credit: NASA Photo/Tom Tschida)

MOJAVE, Calif. (NASA PR) — Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) students developed a sensor package to analyze large pits in the surface of the moon or Mars that could lead to openings of caves. The package was launched recently on Masten Space Systems’ XA-0.1B Xombie suborbital technology demonstration rocket during a NASA-sponsored launch and landing at the Mojave Air and Space Port in Mojave, California.

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NASA Ames, Universities in Talks on Moffett Research Park

NASA Ames and a group of local universities led by the University of California at Santa Cruz are in discussions about the development of a major new campus at Moffett Field to conduct space travel research, the Mountain View Voice reports.

“UCSC, Santa Clara University, the Foothill-De Anza College District and Carnegie Melon University have all signed a letter of intent with NASA Ames, with all of them seeking a major presence in the NASA Research Park planned for Moffett.

“‘It’s an agreement to hold open discussions between us and NASA to see if we can arrive at a plan that will allow us to implement a vision for the research park,’ said Bill Berry, managing director of UCSC’s Affiliated Research Center.”

Tony Spear discusses Lunar X prize

Tony Spear, project manager for Carnegie Mellon’s Google Lunar X Prize entry, recently engaged CMU students and faculty in a lighthearted and informative discussion about the competition.

“At Carnegie Mellon, understanding the problem and the approach to the solution is more important than the answer [itself],” said Spear, discussing his return to Carnegie Mellon after 46 years to join William “Red” Whittaker and his Google X Prize team.