NASA have unveiled plans to return to the Moon in the near future, and Venturi could be on board! The Monegasque firm will be putting forward a new model of lunar rover in response to a call for tenders launched by the US space agency.
Last Sunday, the Orion capsule touched down safely in the Pacific, in what was a crucial new milestone for the Artemis Mission. The vessel will carry astronauts around the Moon in 2024, with NASA eventually planning another lunar landing, this time at the southern pole of the Earth's only satellite.
Venturi Group, whose President is the Monegasque entrepreneur Gildo Pastor, is aiming to play a major role in this programme and has struck a strategic partnership deal with the all-American company Venturi Astrolab. The firm is currently developing a non-pressurised rover, a space exploration vehicle capable of withstanding extreme temperatures. Venturi is already an expert in the field, having successfully created a polar vehicle - electrically-powered, too - for scientific research missions in Antarctica.
NASA will give its response next summer. For Venturti and its US partner, the aim is clear: "to send the FLEX rover to the Moon by late 2025, early 2026," explains Franck Baldet, technical director. The firm will then need to assist the astronauts and provide technical and operational support, for a period of 10 to 15 years. Essentially, the task will be to facilitate logistics for the US space agency, which is aiming to expand our knowledge of the solar system and wants to use the Moon as a forward base from which to explore Mars. The next few years could be a busy time for Venturi!