Audi are going to the moon!
'Vorsprung durch Technik' means 'progress through technology'. We pride ourselves on exceeding limits so our next mission is to send Audi technology to the moon.
The $30-million Google Lunar XPRIZE (GLXP) is an inducement prize space competition organised by the X Prize Foundation, and sponsored by Google. It inspires engineers and entrepreneurs from around the world to develop low-cost methods of robotic space exploration.
To win the competition a privately funded team must design and build a lunar rover that can be successfully placed on the moon, explore 500 meters, and transmit high-definition video images back to earth.
Audi have teamed up with a group of expert engineers known as 'The Part-Time Scientists' to take part in the Google Lunar XPRIZE(GLXP) competition.
Audi will support the German team in the optimisation of their moon rover by sharing our knowledge of several technologies, including e-tron, quattro all-wheel drive, lightweight construction, and piloted driving. Audi will also provide wide-range assistance in testing, trials and quality assurance.
The Audi Concept Design Studio in Munich are revising the rover, soon to be named 'Audi lunar quattro', to ensure ideal lightweight construction conditions by using magnesium in the build of the rover.
The Moon Rover
Most of the rover's components are made from high-strength aluminium and use a solar panel as their main source of energy. A compact lithium-ion battery sits within the chassis to power the 500-metre drive.
360 degree rotatable double wishbone-suspensions allow for off-road capability, with four hub motors powering the e-quattro drive system.
Two cameras on the front of the rover will send detailed 3D images back to earth, with a third camera studying lunar materials and capturing high-definition images.
The Journey To The Moon
The lunar vehicle with the Audi lunar quattro is set to launch into space in 2017 travelling in the Dnepr Rocket at up to speeds of up to 7.8 kilometres a second. Before reaching the moon it will have to overcome the gravitational pull of the earth, intense radiation of sun and extreme temperature changes.
The journey covers over 380,000 kilometres and will take nearly 5 days as the service module will orbit the earth in an expanding spiral in order to reach the moon at a precisely calculated angle.
The planned landing site is situated just north of the moon’s equator, close to the 1972 landing site of the Apollo 17, NASA’s last manned mission to the moon.