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The Google Lunar XPrize is the next great space race, with a $30 million purse offered to commercial teams. Check out Pittsburgh-based Astrobotic's test, which won the team $750,000.
Welcome to the moon -- or a test version of it used by Google Lunar XPrize Milestone candidate Team Astrobotic.
This is a representation of the team's lunar lander, with a prototype of the lunar rover sitting in the background.
No, the rover is not studying for an attempt at challenging Deep Blue at chess. This is a high-contrast screen for testing the high-definition stereo cameras on board.
The rover currently uses a Wi-Fi connection back to the lander, which then repeats the signal back to the base station on Earth -- which for this test was only about 30 feet away.
A look at the front of the rover, with its eyes on the prize.
Prototype wheels, which had previous lives as cake tins.
The spheres represent fuel tanks, used for powering the thrusters, while the solar panels will power the electrical systems.
Testing on an active rock quarry means protective headgear is required.
Here, a Google Lunar XPrize judge verifies the quality of the returned footage.
The entire Astrobotic team, celebrating a successful test.
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