This month, automaker Toyota made two big announcements. The first, more standard reveal was that Toyota would be investing some $750 million in its U.S. operations, creating about 600 jobs in Alabama, Kentucky, Missouri, Tennessee, and West Virginia.
But if that’s not ambitious enough for you, Reuters has reported that Toyota will be adding some depth to its development prowess when it partners with Japan’s space agency to create a manned lunar rover powered by fuel cell technologies.
According to the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), though Japan has no plans to send humans into space at this time, the rover could serve as a building block to eventually get them there.
The conceptual rover features six wheels and is described by Reuters as somewhat resembling “an armored personnel carrier.” As Toyota works through its fuel cell technologies here on earth, the plan is to use the moon as a testing ground to ferret out problems in a harsh environment and improve upon them.
JAXA says it hopes to launch the rover into space in 2029, and that humans should be following in the 2030s.
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