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Chinese Firm will Send Spanish Robot to Moon in 2014 for Google Lunar X Contest

Chinese Firm will Send Spanish Robot to Moon in 2014 for Google Lunar X Contest

Photo: Google Lunar X

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China Great Wall Industry Corporation in June 2014 will launch the Spanish robot that is competing in the Google Lunar X Prize contest to the moon.

The agreement for the space shot was finalized in Paris between the leadership of CGWIC and the Galactic Suite company, which heads the Spanish team.

Xavier Claramunt, the president of Galactic Suite, told Efe that with the agreement the Barcelona Moon Team is at the head of the teams participating in the competition, given that to ensure the launch of the spacecraft is to guarantee more than half of the mission.

The launch will be made with a Long March 2C rocket with a third CTS2 stage to insert the payload into a lunar transfer orbit.

The rocket will carry the Spanish module that, once it detaches and is moonbound, will make course corrections and brake to insert itself into lunar orbit, then touch down on the lunar surface to begin undertaking the tasks included in the contest.

The competition challenges participants to create a robot that can move over the lunar surface and send live images back to Earth before December 2015.

The probe must be able to travel 500 meters (1,625 feet) over the lunar surface, send data, high resolution images and video, survive for one lunar night (14.5 days), locate the remains of earlier missions, like Apollo or Viking, and detect water.

Barcelona Moon Team is the only team based in Spain that is participating in the Google Lunar X Prize, which has attracted the participation of private companies and technological centers from around the world.

The project is headed by Galactic Suite, a private space tourism company, and by ALTRAN, an international consulting firm specializing in technology and innovation.

Claramunt said that the contest is an opportunity for the state aerospace sector, an emerging sector of high added value that is growing.

CGWIC dedicates its efforts to the international development of the Chinese space industry via launch services, the export of satellites, ground-based tracking and the construction of control stations.