PUDDLE HOPS: Astrobotic’s mission to the moon | A push to innovate | Quantum tech

Astrobotic’s first mission to the moon

PITTSBURGH, PA—Astrobotic, a lunar logistics company, is looking at next year’s calendar to set a date for sending the first commercial mission to the moon and the first American spacecraft to soft land there since the Apollo missions. (We interviewed Astrobotic’s CEO, John Thornton, earlier this year.)

Exploring quantum technologies

URBANA-CHAMPAIGN, IL—The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign will be part of a Jumpstart workshop offered by the Midwest I-Corps Node in which it will explore the commercial viability of quantum technologies. Based on the Lean LaunchPad approach, the workshop is specifically designed to empower innovators to test the potential of their ideas and envision how they could play out in the real world.

$32M innovation center in KC

KANSAS CITY, MO—A state-of-the-art innovation studio at the University of Missouri-Kansas City allows students access to technology to build products within their chosen professions. The $32 million Robert W. Plaster Free Enterprise and Research Center includes a fabrication shop, augmented and virtual reality technology, 3D printing lab, research labs and student spaces.

Autonomous car race at Indy

INDIANAPOLIS—Ten teams of students from 21 universities in nine countries will field autonomous race cars on the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) for the first time in a $1.5 million prize competition. The competition will take place on Oct. 23 at IMS.