Toyota Motor Corp. has teamed up with Japan’s space agency in building lunar rovers that will travel to the Moon, according to officials and local media.
Toyota has also jointly developed a small robot that was sent to the International Space Station. Now, the collaboration between Toyota and Japan’s space agency will focus their efforts on the Moon.
“We are planning to cooperate with Toyota in an exploration mission to the Moon,” said a spokesman with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).
The Japanese carmaker and JAXA will reveal their plans for the lunar rover next Tuesday at a joint symposium in Tokyo with Toyota Executive Vice President Shigeki Terashi and astronaut Koichi Wakata, according to The Mainichi, Japan’s National Daily.
Toyota also announced a joint project with JAXA “on mobility and a space probe.” Jiji Press news agency said Toyota will develop a “mobility method” that can be used on the Moon’s surface for the mission.
This mission is part of a global interest in the Moon, known as the “eighth continent” of the Earth. But before humans make their presence on the Moon again, NASA plans to land an unmanned vehicle on the Moon by 2024.
Thus far, Russia, the U.S., and China have made the voyage to the Moon, and just last month Israel launched a spacecraft that will hopefully join the successes.
Additionally, in 2017, Japan unveiled plans to put an astronaut on the Moon in 2030.
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