The launch is scheduled for 8:18 am Dutch time from Cape Canaveral, Florida. If all goes well, the spacecraft will reach the moon on February 23. The destination is the Sinus Viscositatis, or Bay of Stickiness, a place where traces of water molecules can be found on the Moon.
Peregrine was supposed to take off earlier, but during tests the rocket that was supposed to carry the lander to the moon ran into trouble.
The lander carries five measuring instruments from the US space agency NASA. But this mission is mainly aimed at training the flight to the moon and a hard landing there. The US hopes companies can help build bases on the moon. For example, they can fly cargo. With a width of 2.5 meters and a height of almost 2 meters, the peregrine can carry a weight of 265 kg.
The Peregrine flight was not the first attempt by a commercial space agency to land on the moon. Last year, the Japanese company iSpace tried to land the lander, but failed. The ship crashed on the moon and was lost. Only the United States, the Soviet Union, China and India have succeeded in landing on the moon.
By the end of this year, people will go to the moon and back without landing there for the first time. Three Americans and one Canadian were on board. The last time humans got this far from Earth was in December 1972. Humans could set foot on the moon again at the end of next year. The flight's four crew members have not yet been identified.
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