NASA tapped SpaceX to provide a second crewed demonstration landing on the moon as part of its Artemis lunar exploration program, a huge win for SpaceX and a possible gesture at improving the relative lack of existing competition for such services.

This modification, also known as Option B, will help SpaceX demonstrate a Starship lunar lander for the long-term.

“Continuing our collaborative efforts with SpaceX through Option B furthers our resilient plans for regular crewed transportation to the lunar surface and establishing a long-term human presence under Artemis,” Human Landing System program manager Lisa Watson-Morgan said in a statement. “This critical work will help us focus on the development of sustainable, service-based lunar landers anchored to NASA’s requirements for regularly recurring missions to the lunar surface.”

The original contract was awarded for $2.9 billion; NASA did not specify the additional amount it would pay for the second mission.

Developing…

NASA taps SpaceX for second crewed Starship demonstration mission to the moon by Aria Alamalhodaei originally published on TechCrunch

source