Seven nations have signed up with the United States to participate in NASA’s Artemis effort to put astronauts on the moon by as early as 2024.
The Artemis Accords commit the signatories — including Australia, Britain, Canada, Japan, Italy, Luxembourg and the United Arab Emirates as well as the U.S. — to observe a set of principles ranging from the interoperability of space hardware to the protection of heritage sites and space property rights.
NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine and other international representatives announced the signing of the accords today in conjunction with this week’s International Astronautical Congress.
During a briefing with reporters, Bridenstine said the accords will serve as the “preamble of bilateral agreements between the United States and all of our international partners as we go sustainably to the moon with commercial and international partners”.
It’ll be up to each nation to ensure that commercial partners under its jurisdiction — such as Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin space venture, for example — observe the requirements of the Artemis Accords. Just today, Blue Origin tested a guidance system that NASA aims to use on future lunar landers.
Read more: GeekWire