Axiom Space Teams with Astrolab to Advance Lunar Exploration
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This news is classified in: Aerospace Space

Apr 8, 2024

Axiom Space Teams with Astrolab to Advance Lunar Exploration

Astrolab, together with teammates Axiom Space and Odyssey Space Research, were awarded a NASA contract to advance the development of a Lunar Terrain Vehicle (LTV) to enable Artemis astronauts to explore more of the Moon’s surface on future missions. The Astrolab team is one of three teams to win contract awards. Astrolab’s contract is worth up to $1.9 billion. Collectively, the three contract winners may be awarded task orders over the next 13 years with a total potential value of $4.6 billion. The contracts allow for two additional years for the completion of the services.

Axiom Space and Astrolab engineers will ensure the integration of the Axiom Extravehicular Mobility Unit (AxEMU) with the FLEX rover to support unprecedented scientific experimentation and discovery on the lunar surface.

“We are excited to work with Astrolab on its Lunar Terrain Vehicle (LTV), which aims to transform how humans explore the Moon," said Russell Ralston, vice president of Extravehicular Activity (EVA), Axiom Space. “Leveraging our expertise in EVA, Axiom Space is leading the way in designing EVA centric components of the rover, such as vehicle interfaces for both crew and spacesuits, and containers/attachments to carry EVA tools. This collaboration with Astrolab not only showcases our EVA expertise, but also underscores Axiom Space’s commitment to driving advancements in lunar exploration.”

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The rover and AxEMU spacesuit will enable two astronauts to work effectively collecting lunar soil samples and conducting geological surveys on the lunar surface, helping to grow our understanding of the Moon and build a long-term human presence. Future testing and training will ensure the Astrolab FLEX rover and AxEMU spacesuit integrate safely and effectively together.

In 2022, Axiom Space was awarded a NASA contract to build the space agency’s next-generation spacesuits that will be used for Artemis III lunar missions. The new spacesuit will provide astronauts with advanced capabilities for space exploration, while offering NASA affordable, commercially developed human systems needed to access, live, and work on and around the Moon. Evolving NASA’s Exploration Extravehicular Mobility Unit (xEMU) spacesuit design, the AxEMU is built to provide increased mobility and greater protection to withstand the harsh environment of the lunar south pole. The single architecture spacesuit will also integrate with specialized tools developed by Axiom Space for exploration and scientific opportunities.

The Axiom Space team continues progress on the AxEMU spacesuit. Stay tuned to axiomspace.com/axiom-suit for more updates.