'Welcome to the moon': U.S. lands unmanned Odysseus spacecraft on lunar surface

An unmanned, robotic lunar lander launched by a private U.S. company landed on the moon Thursday evening. “We can confirm, without a doubt, that our equipment is on the surface of the moon,” a voice on NASA’s livestream declared more than 10 minutes after Odysseus, the spacecraft operated by Houston-based Intuitive Machines, was slated to make its soft landing.

Video Transcript

- --how we can refine that signal and dial in the pointing for our dishes. What we can confirm, without a doubt, is our equipment is on the surface of the moon. And we are transmitting. So congratulations, IM team. We'll see how much more we can get from that.

[APPLAUSE]

- An excellent call from our mission director--

[INTERPOSING VOICES]

- And over for our CEO Steve Altemus.

- Yeah, if I could just pass on a few words to the entire team in Intuitive Machines at [INAUDIBLE] and here in the mission control. What an outstanding effort. I know this was a nail-biter. But we are on the surface. And we are transmitting. And welcome to the moon.

- Houston, Odysseus has found his new home.

- How about that call, Gary? That was something else, a faint signal. Now it's time to work on refining that signal. But Dr. Tim Crane, our mission director today, making the call. Odysseus has a new home.

- It shows the disciplines of the flight controllers in Nova Control. They waited until there was absolute confirmation that there was a signal. And then that was when they took the moment to celebrate. We saw that it wasn't just the individuals in Nova Control that contributed to the mission. The contributions to enable the success of Nova C's landing on the moon stretches far and wide. We showed, of course, some of the folks watching there. But really, it extends even farther than this, a wonderful and truly amazing moment to celebrate. The US has landed on the moon once again.