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In order to push space mining, NASA seeks information on commercial cargo service to Moon

Picture taken on November 14, 2016 shows the supermoon rising above Cape Town. The moon will be the closest to Earth since 1948 at a distance of 356,509 kilometres (221,524 miles), creating what NASA described as "an extra-supermoon". / AFP PHOTO / RODGER BOSCH

New Delhi: In a possible advancement towards space mining, NASA has started to seek information on commercial payload delivery services to moon.

This week, NASA issued a Request for Information (RfI) to the private industry for proposals related to cargo transportation to the lunar surface, as well as a potential mission to collect lunar samples and deliver them back to Earth, Inverse.com reported on Wednesday.

The exact purpose of such a request for information (RFI), like most of the agency`s RFIs, remains ambiguous, the report said.
“NASA has identified a variety of exploration, science, and technology demonstration objectives that could be addressed by sending instruments, experiments, or other payloads to the lunar surface,” the RFI reads.

“To address these objectives as cost-effectively as possible, NASA may procure payloads and related commercial payload delivery services to the Moon,” it said.

NASA said it is interested in assessing the availability of payload transit and delivery services from Earth to the lunar surface as early as fiscal year 2018 and through the next decade.

PTI