Audi Funds Space Rover, Hopes To Land On Moon In 2017 (VIDEO)

Jun 30, 2015 04:16 PM EDT | Vincent Yodice

Audi plans to launch its moon rover to space in 2017, Motorburn reports.

The German automakers paired up with a group called the Part-Time Scientists to create a rover to touch down on the moon. This is all part of Google's Lunar XPRIZE competition, with the winner being awarded $30 million. The object of the contest is to build a rover, fly it to the moon, drive 500 meters and send back high-definition video recordings to Earth, according to Tech Radar. A total of 15 teams around the world are competing for the prize. The first team to successfully complete the mission will win.

"The concept of a privately financed mission to the moon is fascinating," says Luca de Meo, Audi Board Member for Sales and Marketing, reports Audi USA. "And innovative ideas need supporters that promote them. We want to send a signal with our involvement with the Part-Time Scientists and also motivate other partners to contribute their know-how."

Audi is helping the part-time scientists in fields such as quattro all-wheel drive, lightweight construction and piloted driving. It's safe to say that Audi knows a thing or two about that technology.

Once the rover is complete, it will travel over 238,000 miles to the moon. The rover will be transported in a launching rocket, with the expected travel time to be around five days, according to Audi USA. The rover is targeted to land just north of the moons equator, near the landing site of the Apollo 17.

The Part-Time Scientists were formed by Robert Böhme, an information tech consultant in Berlin. Most of the team, around 35 members, hail from Austria and Germany.

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