ispace-EUROPE Announces Completion of Testing on Micro Rover Qualification Model

12 Apr, 2024

Significant Milestone Achieved in Lunar Exploration Mission

LUXEMBOURG–April 10, 2024–ispace EUROPE S.A., (ispace-EUROPE) the Luxembourg-based subsidiary of ispace, inc., announced today that it has reached a significant milestone by completing all environmental testing of the qualification model of its Micro Rover that will travel to the lunar surface aboard the RESILIENCE lunar lander as part of ispace, inc.’s HAKUTO-R Mission 2.

An ispace-EUROPE engineer prepares the micro rover for environmental testing.

On the occasion of this major milestone, the ESA Director of Human and Robotic Exploration, Daniel Neuenschwander visited ispace EUROPE’s design and assembly facility to witness progress on the rover.

(L) Daniel Neuenschwander, ESA Director of Human and Robotic Exploration and (R) Julien Lamamy, CEO of ispace-EUROPE with the Micro Rover center

The completion of the production and environmental testing of the Micro Rover Qualification model validates the rover design and demonstrates that it is fit to survive the launch and operate in space and on the Moon. Next, the Micro Rover Qualification model will be integrated by ispace on the RESILIENCE lander at the integration and test facility in Tsukuba, Japan while the team in Luxembourg performs the build and test of the final Micro Rover Flight Model. The flight rover is scheduled to be integrated onto the lander in the summer of 2024.

“Witnessing firsthand the development of this cutting-edge lunar exploration micro rover, here in the heart of Europe, highlights the potential of human ingenuity and international cooperation of the Luxembourg industry. ESA very much looks forward to this new piece of European engineering to potentially add to our international lunar exploration effort,” said ESA Director Neueschwander.

“The environmental testing campaign of space hardware is an intense crucible, where months of meticulous design work are put to the ultimate trial. We have assembled a world-class team in Luxembourg and they have done a tremendous job designing and manufacturing a very unique rover in its size and capabilities. I look forward to integrating our flight rover on RESILIENCE as powerful symbol of our Luxembourg-based and Tokyo-based crews coming together, said Julien Lamamy, CEO of ispace-Europe.”

Mission 2 is expected to contribute to the NASA-led Artemis program. In December 2020, ispace EUROPE was selected by NASA to acquire regolith from the lunar surface to be purchased by the space agency. In furtherance of this effort, a shovel developed by Epiroc AB, a leading productivity and sustainability partner for the mining and infrastructure industries, and a corporate partner participating in the HAKUTO-R program, has been delivered and mounted on the Micro Rover. Once on the lunar surface, ispace operators plan to use the shovel to collect a sample of lunar regolith and photograph the collection with the camera mounted on the rover.

The Micro Rover is being developed with co-funding from the Luxembourg Space Agency through a European Space Agency contract with the Luxembourg National Space Programme, LuxIMPULSE.

Update: In a previous description of the micro rover, it was stated that an HD-camera and shovel is front-mounted. The actual design of the micro rover has HD-cameras on both sides of the rover and a back-mounted shovel.

About ispace, inc. (

ispace, a global lunar exploration company with the vision, “Expand our planet. Expand our future.”, specializes in designing and building lunar landers and rovers. ispace aims to extend the sphere of human life into space and create a sustainable world by providing high-frequency, low-cost transportation services to the Moon. The company has business entities in Japan, Luxembourg, and the United States with more than 250 employees worldwide. For more information, visit: and follow us on X: @ispace_inc.

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