Lunar Lander Challenge Awards

At an awards ceremony on November 5, 2009, the X Prize Foundation and NASA culminated the Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander X Prize Challenge by presenting the Level 2 awards to Masten Space Systems ($1 million for first place) and Armadillo Aerospace ($500,000 for second place). Masten Space Systems also received $150,000 for being the second team to complete the Level 1 challenge.

The Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander X Prize Challenge was announced in 2006 to accelerate commercial technological developments supporting a new generation of lunar landers capable of ferrying payloads or humans back and forth between lunar orbit and the lunar surface. Such a vehicle could have direct application to NASA’s space exploration goals as well as the personal spaceflight industry.

The multi-level competition was conducted by the X Prize Foundation with corporate sponsorship and $2 million in prize purses paid by NASA. The competition was comprised of two levels; each level included both first and second place prizes. In October 2008, Armadillo Aerospace took first place in the Level 1 portion, earning $350,000 in prize money.

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