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SpaceVidcast Daily 09.09.14

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While most space geeks are aware of the Google Lunar X-Prize, not as many are familiar with X-Prize's Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander challenge, or NGLLC for short. SpaceVidcast was broadcasting live the 2008 NGLLC in Las Cruces, New Mexico, where Armadillo Aerospace won the level 1 1st place prize. This year, Armadillo's at it again, attempting to get the level 2 first place purse, worth $1 million. Here are the basics: Each team must build a vertical takeoff vehicle that will only utilize rocket power and then ascend to 50 meters with a 26 kg payload that's separate from the vehicle itself. From there they will move the vehicle, or translate it, over to the landing pad, which is also at least 50 meters away. To win level 2, they must keep their vehicle aloft for at least 180 seconds, then they land it as close to the center as possible. And that's when the hard part starts. The team must now refuel their vehicle and launch again within their 135 minute window, which started way back before they even launched the first time. Then they will re-ignite and repeat the 50 meters up, at least 50 meters over, 180 second hover, in order to return the vehicle safely and intact to the original launch pad. On Saturday, August 12th, 2009, Armadillo Aerospace made their attempt at the level 2 prize after already winning first prize for the level 1 last year. This is the first leg of their vehicle they have named Scorpius. (in the background) Whoo! How awesome was that?! I could almost put a cup of coffee on top of Scorpius and not have it even spill a drop! Of course, in order to win, they have to refuel and reverse the rocket back to the original launch pad, or, like this. (RSO) OK, here we go. Pad is clear. Range is clear. 5 ... 4 ... 3 ... 2 ... 1 ... With the successful attempt at the NGLLC level 2 purse, it means that someone will be winning the prize this year. But, it does not necessarily mean Armadillo will. All competing teams have until the end of October 31st, 2009 for this year's challenge and should someone else successfully fly for the required 180 seconds, it will come down to which vehicle has the most accurate landing on the mark on the pad for the $1 million prize. Good luck to all teams and congrats to Armadillo!

Video Details

Duration: 8 minutes and 49 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: Benjamin Higginbotham
Director: Benjamin Higginbotham
Views: 69
Posted by: spacevidcaster on Sep 16, 2009

The 2009 NGLLC is well underway and we already have a winner for the Level 2 prize, although we’re not quite sure who that will be yet.

In this daily we show the possible winner, Scorpius from Armadillo Aerospace and explain the contest itself.

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