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October 17, 2008

Sonja Alexander
Headquarters, Washington


Becky Ramsey
Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander Challenge, Washington

Lunar Lander Teams To Compete For $2 Million NASA Prize

WASHINGTON - Nine teams with rocket-powered vehicles will compete for $2 million in NASA prize money during the 2008 Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander Challenge, Oct. 24-25, at Las Cruces International Airport in New Mexico.

Teams must fly their vehicle, simulating a takeoff and landing on the moon, and repeat the task in a limited period of time. The competition provides a demanding test of navigation and control for the vehicles, as well as a demonstration of reusable rocket engine technology.

NASA provides the prize money for the competition as part of the Centennial Challenges Program. The X PRIZE Foundation manages the competition at no cost to NASA, receiving financial support from sponsors such as the Northrop Grumman Corp. and the state of New Mexico.

Media planning to cover the event should contact Becky Ramsey at 202-349-1125 by 5 p.m. EDT, Oct. 20. Attendance at the competition is limited. The competition will webcast live at:


The Lunar Lander Challenge is one of seven NASA technology prize competitions. The Centennial Challenge prizes are offered to independent inventors who work without government support, including small businesses, student groups and individuals.

NASA's Innovative Partnerships Program Office manages the Centennial Challenges program. For more information about Centennial Challenges, visit:



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