PITTSBURGH (KDKDA) – Carnegie Mellon University is going to the moon.
The Pittsburgh university is developing a rover that is expected to land on the moon in July 2021.READ MORE: Gov. Tom Wolf 'Considering' Lifting Restrictions On Restaurants And Bars
The robot will be one of the first American rovers to explore the surface of the moon.
The four-wheeled robot, equipped with video cameras, is being developed by a team led by a professor of robotics, William “Red” Whittaker.
There is also an arts package called MoonArk that will join the rover.
MoonArk, which weighs about half a pound, has four chambers that will contain hundreds of images, poems, music and samples of earth that a press release says “blur the boundaries between worlds seen and unseen.”READ MORE: 2021 Three Rivers Arts Festival Combining Virtual And In-Person Attractions
Both the robot and the MoonArk will be delivered by a Peregrine lander built by Astrobotic Inc., a CMU spinoff company based in Pittsburgh.
Last week, NASA awarded a $79.5 million contract to Astrobotic to deliver 14 payloads to the moon — and CMU’s is one of them.
“CMU robots have been on land, on the sea, in the air, underwater and underground,” said Whittaker in a press release. “The next frontier is the high frontier.”
The robot will land near Lacus Mortis, or the Lake of Death, which is a large pit of huge interest to scientists.MORE NEWS: Woman Charged With Attempted Homicide In Husband's Stabbing
The rover will provide the first ground-level imagery of the site.