TeamIndus, the Indian team competing for Google’s $30 million Lunar XPrize has just launched a Moonshot Wheels program. The program aims to bring the joys of science and space exploration to students all over the country.
The new project was launched in collaboration with the Agastya International Foundation with the tag HarIndian Ka Moon shot. Ratan Tata himself was present to flag off the program.
The plan is to take a bus, which the team has dubbed ‘Moonshot Wheels’ on a 12,500 km tour of the country, covering 11 states in 12 months. The bus will be able to demonstrate 16 science experiments and includes a space for simulating “space activities”, reports The International Business Times.
TeamIndus is one of only five teams to have qualified for the XPrize program. If all goes to plan, TeamIndus will share a ride with Japan’s entry, Hakuto, on one of Isro’s PSLV rockets. The winner of the Prize will receive $20 million. Second and third place winners will win $5 million each.
As per the criteria laid forth by Google, “a privately funded team must be the first to successfully place a spacecraft on the moon’s surface, travel 500m and transmit HD video and images back to Earth.”
The aim of the project is to inspire people around the world to develop low-cost methods of space travel and robotic space exploration.
The deadline for the launch is March 2017, though. The TeamIndus and Hakuto projects are slated for a launch on 28 December, 2017