Business / Corporate

Bridgestone to join Toyota and JAXA in rover mission to moon

Kyodo

Bridgestone Corp. said Wednesday it would tie up with Toyota Motor Corp. and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency on a joint mission to send a rover to the moon.

The world’s leading tire maker announced its participation at the Space Symposium in Colorado. JAXA is planning to launch the five-year mission in 2029.

Bridgestone said it will design an elastic wheel that can support the rover’s weight, acceleration and braking, minimize its shock absorbance and improve maneuverability — necessary to navigate the moon’s crater-covered, gravelly surface.

Toyota and JAXA said in March they would use an American rocket to launch the rover, amid growing international competition in lunar exploration.

The rover will be 6 meters in length, 5.2 meters wide and 3.8 meters in height, with a living space of 13 square meters, they said.