Lunar Mission One, a British led venture has started a crowd funding in order to send to the moon a robotic lander. The mission wants to drill for probes they hope will help in revealing the origins of the moon and the Earth.
Raising $950,000 (or £600,000) with the help of a Kickstarter campaign is the first step of the plan. That amount of money would finance the plans of the Lunar Mission One and management during the mission’s initial phase. The plan also calls for marketing, additional sales, development and plans building up towards the lander’s launch in 2024.
The crowd-funded spacecraft is planned for launch in 2024. The spacecraft will land on the moon’s South Polar. The scientific instruments equipped on the lander would include a drill capable of getting samples from at least 65 feet (20 meters) in depth and as far down as 350 feet (100 meters).
Lab instruments built into the robotic lander would be able to analyze the samples collected by drilling and the results would be transmitted on Earth. The lander will also be able to show if the subsurface of the moon contains water enough to support human life at a moon base in the future as well as offering new clues about the evolution of Earth and the moon.
The founder of Lunar Missions Ltd and the non-profit organization Lunar Missions Trust, David Iron said:
“Lunar Mission One will make a huge contribution to our understanding of the origins of our planet and the moon, and will inspire a generation to learn more about space, science and engineering in the same way that my generation was inspired by the Apollo moon landings.”
For the amount of $94 (£60), members from the public will be able to buy space on memory discs, and for another amount (currently undisclosed) they could be able to send samples of hair on the lunar lander.
The memory discs will be time capsules for videos, photos or other files and will be buried in the moon in a hole drilled on its surface.
Emeritus professor of space science at The Open University, John Zarnecki said about the mission:
“Lunar Mission One is exhilarating because it’s a new way of doing things. It’s not a mission created by a space agency, but by the people for the people.”