Boeing snubbed as NASA picks 3 lunar lander designs to compete for 2024 manned Moon mission

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Handing out its first Moon-bound contracts in half a century, NASA has contracted three companies to build lunar landers as it settles down to beat the president’s 2024 deadline for Project Artemis. But Boeing is not one of them.

Elon Musk’s SpaceX, Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin, and defense contractor SAIC’s subsidiary Dynetics received the coveted three contracts to compete to build the lunar lander NASA hopes will deliver American astronauts to the Moon within four years, the agency announced on Thursday.

The mission, dubbed Project Artemis, seeks to study the region near the Moon’s south pole in the hope of setting up a permanent base there. NASA is especially eyeing the ice found in its craters in the hope it can be used to sustain life or as fuel.