2024 is set to be the year of the moon, but let’s proceed with care



Alamy Live News. 2WB3HB1 A United Launch Alliance (ULA) Vulcan rocket launches at 2:18 AM on its maiden flight from Complex 41 at the Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, Florida on Monday, January 8, 2024. The primary payload onboard the new rocket is the Astrobotic Peregrine lunar lander, carrying multiple instruments for NASA to the moon. Photo by Joe Marino/UPI Credit: UPI/Alamy Live News This is an Alamy Live News image and may not be part of your current Alamy deal . If you are unsure, please contact our sales team to check.

Joe Marino/UPI Credit/Alamy Live News

THIS is the year of the moon, and it is already kicking off. The first launch of the Vulcan rocket on 8 January marked the start of what may be the biggest deluge of missions the moon has ever seen, thanks to NASA’s Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) programme.

The first CLPS mission is Astrobotic’s Peregrine lander, an uncrewed craft lofted on Vulcan that hoped to reach the lunar surface on 23 February. It could have been the first time a private firm touched down on the moon, but Peregrine suffered a fuel leak and won’t now make it…


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