Moon Express acquires Rocket City Space Pioneers in Teaming Agreement with Dynetics
By Alex Hall on December 20, 2012
Hot on the heels of the exciting teaming between Odyssey Moon and SpaceIL, we have another teaming to announce, this time between Moon Express and Dynetics, enabling Moon Express to acquire Team Rocket City Space Pioneers (RCSP). This agreement brings to Moon Express the substantial network of space industry partners assembled by RCSP. Former RCSP team leader, Tim Pickens, well known for his pioneering work with rocket engines, will be assuming the Chief Propulsion Engineer role at Moon Express.
RSCP have been a very active Google Lunar X PRIZE team in regards to education and outreach, and they recently held a competition to name their spacecraft. That insignia - “The Spirit of Alabama” - will now be carried to the surface by the Moon Express Lander.
I was able by chance to be present when the announcement was made internally at Moon Express yesterday and the excitement was palpable. Tim’s first request to the Moon Express team – is anyone here good at video games? It turns out that his iPad had recently been stolen, and on it was a copy of RCSP’s downloadable game. If you’ve played that game, you’ll know it has levels that have to be unlocked, and as Tim was now back at level 1 on the game, it made it difficult to demonstrate it to interested parties. Never let it be said that our Teams don’t know how to have fun while they attack the problems of getting to the Moon!
This means we are down to 23 teams competing towards the $30 million prize purse. As we’ve mentioned before, we see this as very positive news indeed. Cooperation allows for the doubling up of resources and expertize and this can only accelerate the innovation and achievement in the race to the Moon. The Google Lunar X PRIZE has already achieved one of its key goals, that of stimulating a new commercial landscape for lunar exploration.
Congratulations to Moon Express, Dynetics and Rocket City Space Pioneers!