The cable networks will document the $30 million Google Lunar XPrize competition
The Discovery and Science Channels will air a new docu-series following the Google Lunar XPrize competition, which will culminate in a live broadcast from the moon, which is expected to occur sometime in 2015.
In the competition, private companies are battling to land an unmanned craft on the surface of the moon, travel 500 meters, and transmit live pictures and video back to earth for a $30 million prize by the deadline of Dec. 31, 2015.
The Science and Discovery series will follow the teams and the entire process from testing, lift-off to live coverage of the winning lunar landing.
XPrize vice chairman and president Robert K. Weiss said that one of the competition’s goals is to inspire “young scientists, engineers and space explorers.”
“More than half the world’s population has never had the opportunity to experience a live broadcast from the moon,” Weiss said in a statement. “Partnering with Discovery Channel and Science Channel will allow us to engage the public around this milestone event, creating an ‘Apollo Moment’ for the next generation.”
Discovery Channel, Science Channel and Velocity group vice president, Eileen O’Neill, touted the competition’s potential “stakes, competition, big characters, and mind-blowing visuals” as reasons why the series works for the channels. She also pointed out historical significance of the project.
“When the winning craft touches down on the moon’s surface, it’s going to trigger buzz and inspiration all over the world. Our intention is to provide a live, front-row seat to history being made,” O’Neill said.
The series will be executive-produced by Andrew Jackson, vice president and executive producer of the Google Lunar XPRIZE for Science Channel and Discovery Channel.