German company unveils lunar motorcycle concept

The buggy of the NASA rolling on the moon remains the strongest image of the Apollo 15 mission (1971). With the Artemis program in focus, the US space agency is once again working on lunar transport vehicles, and could well be inspired by the Tardigrade, a concept of space motorcycle imagined by the German company Hookie.

Lunar Motorcycle 1

If it is a little difficult to see the connection with the famous almost indestructible water bear, Hookje’s motorcycle still displays interesting characteristics. The vehicle could travel at the top speed of 15 km / h (which is not much), but would benefit from a much higher level of handling than that of a four-wheeled transport rover.

Lunar Motorcycle 448x450

The machine would be relatively light (140 kg), mainly thanks to its aluminum frame covered with a tubular exoskeleton in Kevlar (an ultra resistant material a priori perfectly suited to cosmic radiation). Faster, lighter, and manoeuvrable than the NASA Rovers, but also significantly more compact, this Tardigrade seems to have solid assets… to the point of convincing NASA engineers? The first prototype of the Tardigrade will be presented at the end of the month at the Petersen Museum (California).

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