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Iris related press and media

April 19, 2024

World's First Micro Lunar Rover

In January of this year, Peregrine Mission One launched with at least 22 payloads. One was intended to be the first American made rover to land on the moon since the Apollo days: 1972.

March 16, 2024

Peregrine Payloads Returned Useful Data Despite No Lunar Landing

Despite not making it to the moon, NASA and others flying payloads on Astrobotic’s Peregrine lunar lander say they still got useful data from the mission.

February 9, 2024

It Started as Winter Break. It Ended With a Doomed Moon Mission.

Carnegie Mellon University students built Iris, a tiny lunar rover. When the spacecraft carrying it to the moon malfunctioned, they turned their vacation house into mission control.

January 19, 2024

CMU’s Iris Rover: A Heartbeat in Space, A Legacy on Earth

For Carnegie Mellon University’s Iris team, every moment seemed to bring a new challenge with it — and they turned every challenge into an opportunity

January 11, 2024

All Seven CMU Colleges Send Iris to Space

Interdisciplinary effort across Carnegie Mellon University crucial to student-led space project.

January 08, 2024

Carnegie Mellon University Payloads Iris, MoonArk Launch as Part of Historic Lunar Mission

Payloads from CMU launched to the moon at 2:18 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 8, as part of America’s return to the lunar surface for the first time in 50 years. Iris, a tiny rover aiming for a big impact, and MoonArk, a collaborative sculpture project that is as much a work of art as an engineering marvel, rode aboard the rocket as it cleared the launch tower and arched toward space.

January 08, 2024

Vulcan Centaur launches Peregrine lunar lander on inaugural mission

Peregrine is a lunar lander developed by Pittsburgh-based Astrobotic. The Centaur placed Peregrine on a highly elliptical orbit that will take it to the moon, where it will go into orbit in advance of a landing attempt Feb. 23.

August 21, 2023

This Student-Built Rover
Is Aiming for the Moon

Students at Carnegie Mellon University, led by a 28-year-old ex-NASA pro turned PhD student, have crafted the nimble Iris rover. Iris is setting its sights on moondust close-ups, but by challenging industry norms with limited resources, the project's success could turbocharge independent space research.

June 26, 2023

New Moon Rover Gives
It the Old College Try

The United States' first robotic lunar rover was built by Carnegie Mellon students.

April 9, 2023

The First U.S. Lunar Rover
is Headed to the Moon
and Students Made It!

Now, the first lunar rover is almost ready to launch. But it’s not being sent up by NASA. The whole project—from design to construction to eventual off-world mission—is being run by college students.

March 30, 2023

University's Students
send the first American
lunar rover to the Moon on May 4

In addition to sending a rover to the Moon before NASA, Carnegie Mellon University will also be the first to send a museum on the Moon - the MoonArk project. It consists of chambers made of titanium, platinum, and sapphire that contain hundreds of images, poems, music, nano-objects, mechanisms, and samples from Earth.

March 29, 2023

College Students Are
about to Put a Robot on
the Moon before NASA.

It seems likely that NASA’s robots will also be beaten by a group made up primarily of students at Carnegie Mellon University. About 300 students worked on a rover named Iris that they plan to send to the moon aboard a commercial lunar lander scheduled to launch on May 4.

March 29, 2022

College students are
sending a rover the size of
a shoebox to the Moon

Iris is tiny and weighs 2 kgs (4.4 lbs)—but the design is deliberately small. The rover will fly on a private rocket carrying 14 payloads to the moon, which includes Iris, projects for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration as well as some humans. The project involved around 300 students, who will also control and operate Moonshot Mission Control, the control center for Iris based in CMU’s campus in Pittsburgh.

December 21, 2022

Pittsburgh helped the US
win the Space Race.
Going to the moon again.

Iris, a rover developed by a team of CMU students, is expected to be attached to the Peregrine. Weighing only 4 pounds, Iris will go down in history as the first American and student-developed rover to land on the moon in addition to being the smallest and lightest rover.

JUNE 23, 2022

How Pittsburgh
Is Leading the U.S.
Back to the Moon

Also on board is a rover the size of a microwave oven built and designed by students from nearby Carnegie Mellon University. All of this has at once put Astrobotic—and Pittsburgh—very much on the cosmic map.

FEBRUARY 03, 2022

Iris: Student-built
robot rover on track
to explore the Moon

Iris has not been built by experienced engineers at Nasa or a large aerospace company, but by students at Whittaker's home institution of Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) in Pittsburgh. The robot was recently secured to its lunar lander, ahead of a launch scheduled for 2022.

JANUARY 18, 2022

First lunar rovers in
decades may explore
the moon in 2022

While the public has grown used to seeing rovers on Mars, NASA plans for 2022 to be the year of a U.S. return to the surface of the moon by two robotic landers and tiny rovers.

DECEMBER 28, 2021

11 Incredible Space
Missions In 2022 You
Need To Know About

Peregrine Mission 1 will carry scientific and other payloads to the Moon including the Iris rover, the first American and student-developed rover to land on the Moon.

DECEMBER 03, 2021

In 2022, Iris will be the
first American student-developed rover
to land on the moon

At four pounds, it's "a huge, huge thing to be able to make a something so small," program manager and Ph.D. student Raewyn Duvall says of the rover, which will travel with spacecraft from Pittsburgh tech company Astrobotic.

DECEMBER 03, 2021

Iris lunar rover
is bolted in and ready
for journey to the moon

The tiny rover passed a huge milestone on Wednesday, Dec. 1, when it was secured to one of the payload decks of Astrobotic's Peregrine Lunar Lander, which will deliver it to the moon next year.

OCTOBER 13, 2021

Meet Iris,
CMU’s lunar rover that’s
getting ready to launch

A tiny lunar rover destined to go to the moon next year will have a short but important mission: laying the groundwork for other robots to build a colony in space.

JANUARY 18, 2021

Composites design helps
nano-sized lunar rover
hit big milestones

Developed by Carnegie Mellon University, the ultralight, composites-intensive Iris nano-rover will make its lunar debut later this year.

JULY 02, 2020

Tiny, simple moon rovers
will bring cubesat science
to the lunar surface

Next year, as part of NASA's lunar delivery orchestrated by the Pennsylvania-based company Astrobotic, the agency will launch a small rover to begin that revolution. That rover is called Iris and is the first of a new, small and simple design called CubeRovers to hearken back to cubesats.

JULY 02, 2020

Ex-intern used NASA skills
to lead robot rover
moon mission

A former intern at NASA stepped up in a leading role and created a small robotic explorer destined to land on the Moon, according to a blog post from NASA.

JUNE 15, 2020

Pittsburgh researchers and companies want to get
American robots and people back to the moon

Some Pittsburgh rovers are gearing up to take big steps for mankind.Carnegie Mellon University researchers are developing what could be the first American robotic rover to explore the moon’s surface.

MAY 14, 2020

Iris Lunar Rover
meets milestone
for flight

"We are moving forward…we’re going to the moon," a triumphant project manager, Raewyn Duvall, told Iris team members during a Zoom meeting following the review.

MAY 12, 2020

CMU's tiny robot rover
passes NASA design review
ahead of 2021 trip to the Moon

Carnegie Mellon University is one step closer to operating its robotic rover on the surface of the Moon: The school’s diminutive bot has passed a crucial NASA design review, performed by the agency in collaboration with Astrobotic, whose Peregrine lunar lander will be providing the ride for the robot down to the surface of the Moon on a mission set for 2021.