‘No chance of a soft landing’: Company confirms Peregrine mission’s human remains won’t reach the moon

Engineers have identified the potential cause of a fuel leak on the Peregrine spacecraft that has left it, the first U.S. craft to attempt a soft landing on the moon in 50 years, with “no chance” of completing its mission.

The Peregrine spacecraft, owned by the private American company Astrobotic Technology, launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida, aboard a Vulcan rocket at 2:18 a.m. EST on Monday (Jan. 8).

The spacecraft’s goal was to become the first private craft to perform a controlled landing on the moon, and was laden with instruments to measure the conditions on the lunar surface. Controversially, the spacecraft is also carrying human remains, including those of science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke; Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry; and Roddenberry wife’s, Majel Barrett.


The Celestis Voyager Memorial Spaceflight — also known as the Enterprise Flight, which was also launched on the Vulcan rocket and was slated to journey to deep space — is carrying the ashes of more than 200 individuals, including Star Trek’s Nichelle Nichols, James Doohan and DeForest Kelley, who played Nyota Uhura, Montgomery Scott and Dr. Leonard McCoy, respectively, on the classic sci-fi show.

Stored alongside these remains are samples of DNA from the U.S. presidents George Washington, Dwight Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy.

In this partnership, NASA acts as a “customer,” taking a back seat to the companies on spacecraft design and mission planning — an arrangement the space agency says will cut costs, boost development speed and encourage innovation. As such, NASA has said it can tolerate some mission failures.


Article URL : https://www.livescience.com/space/space-exploration/no-chance-of-a-soft-landing-company-confirms-peregrine-missions-human-remains-wont-reach-the-moon