Gifts from above | The Planetary Society

Japan’s ispace has unveiled its newest micro lunar rover. The private spaceflight company’s mini rover will fly on a Moon landing mission in the winter of 2024. The rover is designed to use a shovel to scoop lunar regolith and a camera to image those samples. Image credit: ispace.


Rovery McRoverface? Australians are too creative for that. The Australian Space Agency is inviting Australians to help choose a name for the country’s first home-made moon rover, which will fly to the Moon through a partnership with NASA as soon as 2026. The agency asked thousands of people and schools to take part in a contest to come up with the best name for the future moon vehicle, whittling them down to a shortlist of four names: “Mateship”, “Roo-ver”, and the Indigenous words “Kakirra” and “Coolamon.” Aussies can now vote for their favorite.


A year after its test mission, there’s still a lot to learn from Artemis I. NASA is currently studying the performance of the heat shield on the Orion spacecraft, which reentered Earth’s atmosphere after orbiting the Moon in late 2023. Artemis II will carry astronauts to lunar orbit, potentially before the end of 2024.

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