What Is Project M?

Project M is  a JSC Engineering Directorate led mission to put a lander on the moon with a robot within a 1,000 days starting Jan 1., 2010. “M” has significance in two ways. First, it is the Roman numeral for 1,000. And “M” is the first letter for “Moon”.

How is Project M different from past NASA projects?

  • No prime contractors.
  • No roadblocks.
  • Just use the best engineers in the world to get the job done on time.

There will be full press on this…including embedded media, full multimedia and social networking.  Can you say “The Apprentice goes to Space?

When will Project M begin? Next month? Next year? No, Project M has been “go” since Monday, November 9th.


  1. There’s not a lot of info about Project M so it’s hard to know what to make of it. But before anyone dismisses it outright we should recognize that, contained within the concept, are a number of intriguing possibilities especially in the light of the apparent cancellation of the Constellation program.

    The Project M video depicts a very small craft, something that wouldn’t need an Ares V to get to LEO. Since it contains a robonaut, no life-support systems would be needed apart from a source of power such batteries charged by solar panels. True, a bipedal robot isn’t the best choice, but robonaut actually comes attached to a low center-of-gravity rover. The real robonaut has its joints protected from lunar dust by a space suit as well.

    The main problem with the video is the apparent purpose of the robonaut, namely, it is there to scientifically explore and perform inspiring gestures. No, what a lunar robonaut needs to do is to prepare the way for humans by exploring lava tubes, searching for frozen water, setting up equipment to produce oxygen, water, & fuel, and constructing habitats. Pairs of robonauts, teleoperated from Earth, could potentially work together, assemble large structures, and even repair each other. Then, later, humans can arrive singly or in small numbers. They won’t need to bring much in the way of life support or fuel for the return. In short, they may not need an Ares V to reach and land on the moon.

    Lunar robonauts could keep the goals of Constellation alive.

  2. Hi All….im kind of split between being really upset with the demise of the Constellation Project…and the idea of NASA spending money on new ideas, new technology and begining a new era of space travel beyond the moon. I agree that the problem with Consellation was that it never had the funding to make it a reality. Sure it had a vision, but it was one that it would never have reached because of lack of cash. It would have been great to see us get to the moon…and land there again, but i think what would be a better idea is invest in new technology…and then send men tot he moon..AND beyond using rockets that will take months instead of years. In the meantime we MUST do two things. 1)speed up the process with rockets like SpaceX’s Falcon…so we wont have to rely on the russians (which coasts three times as much to lift then the projected price of the falcon) and 2)Get the ball rolling of project M, Stop talking about this and do it. This would be a great way to get the american public back into the idea of space…and with the general public back in NASA’s corner…the funding will comne.

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