Lunar Lander Company Stock Plummets After Incident on Lunar Surface, NASA Assures Public It Was a Success

Lunar Lander Company Stock Plummets After Incident on Lunar Surface, NASA Assures Public It Was a Success

The return of America to the moon went sideways, literally, after hectic hacking on Thursday saved the landing from being a disaster.

As a result, even though many celebrated the return of America’s first moon landing since 1972, the stock in the company that made the lunar lander Odysseus dropped 32 percent in after-hours trading on Friday, according to Barron’s.

Complications did not darken a news release posted on NASA’s website.

“For the first time in more than half a century, America returned to the Moon. Congratulations to Intuitive Machines for placing the lunar lander Odysseus carrying NASA scientific instruments to a place no person or machine has gone before, the lunar South Pole,” NASA Administrator Bill Nelson said.

“This feat from Intuitive Machines, SpaceX, and NASA demonstrates the promise of American leadership in space and the power of commercial partnerships,” he said.

But on Friday, Intuitive Machines CEO Steve Altemus revealed the dark side of the landing, according to CNN.

“We think it came down (moving) about 6 miles an hour this way, and about 2 miles an hour (horizontally along the surface) and caught foot in the surface, and the lander has tipped like this,” Altemus said, using a model to show the lander on its side.

Altemus said only one piece of the lander’s cargo is now on the side of the lander facing downward: A piece of art launched for a customer of the company.

Joel Kearns, deputy associate administrator for exploration in NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, said officials are trying to determine if the mission can accomplish its goals with the lander lying down on the job.

“We are doing an assessment to see: Are there any measurements still to come from any of the NASA supplied payloads that most likely can’t take place particularly because of this new orientation?” Kearns said.

Altemus also revealed that a faulty piece of navigation hardware caused a major glitch prior to the landing.

Altemus said learning of the problem was “like a punch in the stomach — that we were going to lose the mission.”

An experimental NASA instrument called the Navigation Doppler Radar was pressed into service, with ground-based controllers improvising their way through the landing

The Associated Press revealed the system designed to land the craft failed because a switch was not flipped prior to liftoff.


This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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