Lockheed Martin doesn’t just make weapons systems, the F22 Raptor, and… okay, and rocket engines. Crescent Space is the newest spinoff from the weapons and aerospace company and it’s dedicated to a slightly less explosive aim — that of lunar communications infrastructure.
Which, if you’re paying attention, is a major target of the ongoing Artemis program. Nokia has already been tasked with building a 4G network on the lunar surface — gotta let astronauts doomscroll too, after all — but this new venture promises to be a bit more expansive.
Dead Crescent Space
Our snarky doomscrolling comment isn’t far off the mark either. Crescent Space’s first venture is something called Parsec. That’s a communications network capable of carrying signals from Earth to lunar orbit and the Moon’s surface and back. It’s not far from what we already do with international communication. It’s just branched out in the direction of Earth’s Moon.
And, the company says, Parsec “…will also provide critical position, timing, and navigation services for lunar missions.” In other words, Google Maps will conceivably work on the lunar surface starting from 2025. That’s when the first nodes for the project are expected to make it into space. Of course, nothing space-based ever launches on time but we don’t talk about that.
Crescent Space will be headed by Joe Landon, who previously worked on Lockheed Martin’s civil space exploration strategy. “Crescent is well positioned to serve the upcoming wave of lunar science and exploration missions, including NASA’s crewed Artemis moon landings,” said Landon.
Should the company have its way, communication between Earth and the Moon should be as smooth as it is between continents here on the ground. It also means that lunar satellites will also start cluttering up lunar orbits, even before NASA manages to build the Lunar Crater Radio Telescope. But hey, Netflix will have an all-new market to expand to.