The first private mission outside of Earth's orbit is closer than many of us think.
U. S. government officials are set to approve a mission by privately-held space company Moon Express to travel outside of Earth's orbit in late 2017.
Moon Express's mission involves plans to land a suitcase-sized package of scientific equipment on the moon for ongoing exploration and commercial development.
The decision involved months of lobbying and coordinated conversations between a number of federal agencies.
Under international treaties, the U.S. is responsible for the cargo of both public and private spacecraft.
This makes commercial space travel a complex legal issue not just domestically, but abroad.
A Moon Express representative declined to comment on this story but noted that the company is very optimistic about its proposal.
Moon Express is not the only company seeking for the right to travel to outer space.
Elon Musk's Space X aims to send an unmanned aircraft to Mars by 2018.
Questions 5 to 7 are based on the news report you have just heard.
Question 5:What is the news report mainly about?
Question 6: What is Moon Express planning to do?
Question 7: What does Moon Express think of its mission?