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News Link • Space Travel and Exploration

5 Private Moon-Race Teams Compete for Bonus $6 Million

•, By Miriam Kramer
 Astrobiotic, Moon Express, Team Indus, Hakuto and Part-Time-Scientists are all in the running to win "milestone prizes" later this year, Google Lunar X Prize officials announced today (Feb. 19). The total purse for the awards is $6 million with the teams competing in three different categories for the funds, X Prize officials said.

Each company's ultimate goal is to ready its probe for launch by Dec. 31, 2015 in order to have a shot at winning the overall prize. To win the grand prize, a company's spacecraft will need to be the first in the competition to move 1,650 feet (500 meters) on the moon and send video, images and data back to Earth from the lunar surface. The milestone prizes are designed to help teams overcome financing problems they could be facing while trying to compete, officials said. [See photos of teams competing for the Google Lunar X Prize]

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