A private company just landed the U.S. back on the moon for the first time since 1972 ✊
· Feb 23, 2024 · NottheBee.com

After five long decades of absence, the U.S. is back on the lunar surface, baby!

Intuitive Machines

Intuitive Machines IM-1 mission reached the moon's surface on Thursday evening, in the first American lunar landing since the Apollo era.

The company's Nova-C cargo lander, named "Odysseus" after the mythological Greek hero, is the first U.S. spacecraft to land on the lunar surface since 1972. Adding to the feat, Intuitive Machines is the first company to pull off a moon landing — government agencies have carried out all previously successful missions.

That's right: It's the first time we've been to the moon since Nixon was president. And it's a private company doing it. Murica!

Here's a shot of the announcement of the landing at mission control:

It sure is purdy:

According to NASA, which is working with Intuitive Machines, the project will study "plume-surface interactions, radio astronomy, and space weather interactions with the lunar surface." The project will also work at "demonstrating precision landing technologies and communication and navigation node capabilities."

NASA, according to CNN, is "seeking to scout the moon using robotic explorers developed by private contractors before sending astronauts there later this decade."

Over the course of its flight, Intuitive Machines offered fascinating glimpses of the craft's journey to the lunar surface:

The mission, meanwhile, was launched using a SpaceX rocket, which probably explains why Papa Elon is so keenly interested in the whole affair:

Very exciting to be witnessing another Space Age.

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