General Motors (GM) continues to expand its fleet of electric vehicles and has decided to push the limits of Earth.
In collaboration with Lockheed Martin, GM plans to develop an electric lunar rover for NASA astronauts to operate to explore the natural satellite.
Although it may sound new, GM is no stranger to developing vehicle technologies for the Moon. The automaker previously created the inertial guidance and navigation systems for the entire Apollo program, including the human landing on the watershed in 1969.
Additionally, GM helped develop the electric Lunar Roving Vehicle (LRV) that was used on the Apollo 15-17 missions.
Lockheed Martin is not far behind being one of the largest aerospace and technology companies on both this planet and its Moon. Lockheed Corporation and Martin Marietta previously existed as separate entities prior to a merger in the 1990s.
While most of its work is dedicated to the United States Department of Defense, NASA remains a predominant contractor.
With the first manned mission of the Artemis Program launching in 2024, both GM and Lockheed Martin plan to use their previous experience to provide astronauts with the spacecraft to explore the Moon further than any human has ever gone before.
In an official GM press release, the companies announced their participation in the Artemis Moon missions and their plans to deliver the Lunar Terrain Vehicle (LTV), the first of several vehicles for NASA’s most recent lunar program.
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“This alliance brings together powerhouse innovation from both companies to make a transformative class of vehicles. Surface mobility is critical to enable and sustain long-term exploration of the lunar surface. These next-generation rovers will dramatically extend the range of astronauts as they perform high-priority science investigation on the Moon that will ultimately impact humanity’s understanding of our place in the solar system,” said Rick Ambrose, Executive Vice President of Lockheed Martin Space.
For his part, Alan Wexler, senior vice president of Innovation and Growth at General Motors, explained that GM made history by applying advanced technology to the vehicle and they hope that it can support American astronauts on a new trip to the Moon.
Written by | Gabriel Sayago