EV startup Canu builds a launchpad shuttle prototype for NASA.

NASA’s official astronaut transport vehicle could be a canoe. No, not a boat — a battery-powered van. The bubble EV startup was recently awarded a contract by the U.S. General Services Administration to build a vehicle that will take astronauts to the launchpad as part of NASA’s Artemis program.

Now, this contrast is not for a glamorous $ 1 Corvette as the astronauts of the past were able to drive. This is actually a big guy’s haul for Canoo that can take up to eight people stretched out on the public roadway কিছু something that Canoo is fairly confident it will accomplish anyway soon.

As part of Canoo’s contract, it will be paid $ 147,855 to build at least one vehicle for NASA by June 2023 – for the Artemis Crew Transport Vehicle (CTV). From Operation and Checkout Building (O&C) at Kennedy Space Center to Launch Pad 39B. And will be responsible for bringing them back if the launch is not successful.

According to NASA’s technical requirements, the CTV must be a zero-emission vehicle — either a battery-electric, plug-in hybrid, or a fuel cell EV. It would fit eight people, including a pilot and four fully fitted NASA flight crew members, as well as about 60 cubic feet of storage space – equivalent to folding the rear seats of a Mazda CX-5.

It will need enough range to cover 50 miles and will be able to withstand an eight-hour duty day using air or, more importantly, the warmer Florida climate, with air conditioning. Finally — and this could be my favorite part of the whole deal — it should have a sick wrapper or paint job that “would inspire the NASA agency and the public for future Artemis missions.”

This is actually a pretty big break for Kanu. The five-year-old EV startup is designing this futuristic, modular, pod-looking vehicle for customers, although it has not really attracted any attention outside of the official contract awarded in exchange for Canoo to build its manufacturing plant in Oklahoma. Now, sure, 147,855 isn’t a lot of money, but it is NASA. Remember the big stink of everyone (including us) picking up Jeff Bezos from the Blue Origin Pod landing site? Now give a picture of a space-age egg carrying a real astronaut into real space.

That being said, if Kanu wants to have more success together, there are still some problems to work with. In 2021, the US Securities and Exchange Commission opened an “information-seeking investigation” into Canoo’s SPAC consolidation. In addition, two high-ranking vice presidents recently took their leave of absence from Kanu in February, including the company’s production VP and investor relations VPO. A few days ago, two co-founders, the Chief Technology Officer and the Chief Marketing Officer also left the company.

Canoo will launch its 350-horsepower “Lifestyle Vehicle” by the end of 2022, starting at $ 34,750. It also features an adventure-themed pickup.

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