The company announced earlier this month that it had completed its funding campaign to raise $45million to send a probe to the Moon, and now its co-founder, Naveen Jain, has said that it is ready for a launch later this year.
Mr Jain, who is also chairman of the group, told CNBC: "Moon Express now has all the capital it needs to land its small robotic spacecraft on the surface of the Moon in November or December of 2017.”
Mr Jain added that he "and his partners are just a group of entrepreneurs trying to move humanity forward. We want to leave a legacy for future generations."
President Trump has recently announced the transition team for NASA, which were Charles Miller, Chris Shank while the leading candidate to become the next NASA administrator is Republican Jim Bridenstine – all three of which are keen to push commercial space travel.
Moon Express is planning to launch in November
The news of the trio’s appointments likely spurred on Moon Express, who are keen to become the first private firm to land on the nearest celestial body to Earth.
Moon Express highlighted the recent discovery of lunar water, which would allow astronauts to use it as a sort of refuelling-station for further space exploration, such as trips to Mars.
The firm’s CEO, Bob Richards, said earlier this month: “The recent discovery of water on the moon is an economic game changer for humanity’s future.
The Moon Express rover
Supermoon in pictures
Mon, November 14, 2016
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The 'supermoon' as seen from various countries
“Water is the oil of the solar system, and the moon has become a gas station in the sky.”
The Moon is also abundant in an element known as helium-3, of which there is enough on the Moon to be used to generate enough power for the US and the European Union for an entire year – one of the many resources that can be “unlocked and used to benefit Earth”, added Mr Richards.
The latest round of funds will be used to help get the company’s MX-1E spacecraft out of low-orbit.
The company must travel on the moon if it is to win Google's prize
The process has been part of Google’s Lunar Xprize – a competition from the search engine giant which challenged firms to “land a privately funded rover on the Moon” in a bid for the $30 million prize.
There are 16 challengers from the likes of Japan, Chile and Israel among others, who hope to be the first private firm on the moon.
In order to win the competition, the likes of Moon Express must land a rover on the moon, have it travel at least 500 metres and stream high definition images back to Earth.