HUNTSVILLE, Ala – In just 6-months, a team of businesses including Blue Origin, Lockheed Martin, and Northrop Gruman have conducted 25 risk-reduction tests on their Human Landing System product for the National Team. One of a few business groups competing for the Human Landing System (HLS) contract.
HLS will bring NASA back to the moon after decades of other ventures. The first person to return to the moon will be a woman.
“A lot of young women across the world are going to see that and it’s going to inspire them to achieve their dreams,” said Sandy Magnus, a former space shuttle astronaut.
The U.S. Space & Rocket Center now has a model HLS, donated by Lockheed Matin, alongside a Lunar Lander model. The HLS is more spacious and will be more autonomous compared to what astronauts originally faced when landing on the moon.
“The experience, the inside, the crew displays, the software, all will be virtually identical to Orion,” said Paul Anderson, Lockheed Martin’s Ascent Element Program Manager.
You can watch the entire 1-hour update webinar from Lockheed Martin, here.
The schedule for HLS is on a rapid pace. In July 2019, NASA’s Marshall Spaceflight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, was designated to lead NASA’s Human Landing System. In September of 2019, NASA turned to the space/defense industry for bids.
NASA explains the process as such: “NASA streamlined its partnering approach to empower industry to meet NASA’s goal of achieving sustainability at the Moon while also expediting lander development to meet the 2024 timeline.”
Leaders from Lockheed Martin said Thursday that HLS will do a cargo test without humans before the 2024 goal/deadline. The target goal for the cargo launch is 2023.