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The five finalists in Google’s private-sector race to the moon have 341 days to launch…and counting

Five teams now have until the end of the year to launch spacecraft to the moon in search of the $20 million first-place Google Lunar X-Prize.

The X-Prize foundation confirmed today that five teams from around the world demonstrated serious plans to launch in 2017 by the beginning of the year and thus become finalists in the contest: SpaceIL of Israel, MoonExpress of the United States, TeamIndus of India, Hakuto from Japan, and SynergyMoon, an international syndicate.

Fitting for a mad dash into space, the various teams plan to launch their spacecraft plan on four different rockets over the twelve months, two of which have never flown before.


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