- with low-cost transport, where would international astronauts go? -


Between 1969 and 1972, the United States landed at six different locations on the Moon. A total of 12 astronauts explored around their landing sites whether by walking or driving rovers.

Lunokhod 1: While America was conducting the Apollo Moon landings, the Soviet Union sent a couple of rovers. Lunokhod 1 is a modest-sized rover with solar panels to drive by day and a nuclear power device allowing it to survive the 14 -day lunar night. It drove a total of 10.5 kilometers and sent back many TV and high-resolution images over nearly a year's time.

Lunokhod 2: Launched shortly after the last Apollo program, Lunokhod 2 was a repeat of the first Lunokhod rover. In total, it drove 89 kilometers which was even further than the Apollo program's longest crewed drive. It was only exceeded by a modest distance by the Opportunity rover on Mars.

Yutu: China took great pride with its Yutu rover landed by the Chang'e 3 lander. Unfortunately, it didn't survive the first lunar night. So the rover and lander remain close to each other.

Commercial Landers: There are currently no other rovers on the Moon but it is likely that there will be some commercial landers and rovers by the time crew returns to the surface of the Moon. So, there will be some more hardware in this category to visit.

Next: Landers