A private moon landers is trying to become the first to land on the moon.

It is possible that ispace will be the first private company to make a soft landing on the moon.

The rocket that will carry Hakuto-R to the moon will be launched from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. A small United Arab Emirates rover will be deployed after landing. A high-resolution camera, thermal imager, microscopic imager, and a probe designed to examine electrical charges on the lunar surface will be used by the rover.

It's not clear if Hakuto-R will be the first private venture to land on the moon. According to Spaceflight Now's launch calendar, Astrobotic's Peregrine lunar lander will lift off in the first quarter of 2023, while NASA has ordered the company to launch its Nova-C lunar lander. It's hard to say which company will land first.

The founder and CEO of ispace said in a statement that the first mission would lay the groundwork for unleashing the moon's potential and transforming it into a robust and vibrant economic system.

NASA says that the Artemis moon program will boost science.

Private companies don't have the resources of a government so landing on the moon is difficult. SpaceIL's Beresheet lander crashed during its attempt to land. A new year. Small commercial landers are on the moon to pave the way for future human landings.

The commercial lunar payload services program will bring even more robotic missions to the surface in the coming decade and is supported by the Artemis program. The ispace's partner was tasked by NASA to lead a team that would perform a daring lunar far-side landing.

There may be more customers for private moon landers than just NASA.

The main landing site of Hakuto-R is on the northeast side of the moon. The site was chosen to allow for multiple contingencies during the long transit phase of the mission.

The target site criteria included continuous sun-illumination duration and communication visibility from the Earth. There are alternative landing targets like Lacus Somniorum.

graphic showing 10 phases of the Hakuto-R moon landing with pictures of the lander and the moon's surface

Envisioned major milestones of the Hakuto-R ispace moon-landing mission, as of November 2022. (Click to zoom in.) (Image credit: ispace)

"Hakuto," which means "white rabbit" in Japanese, was the ispace- managed team's name. There was a $20 million prize for the first private group to land on the moon, but no one won.

The "R" stands for "rebooted" and it was originally planned to land on the moon in 2021. It is the company's goal to eventually enable human settlement using lunar water ice.

The co-author of Why Am I Taller is Elizabeth Howell. A book about space medicine is in the works. Follow us on social media, like us on Facebook (opens in new tab)