NASA has established a bilateral agreement where countries interested in the Artemis deep-space exploration mission may participate in program activities in line with a set of principles, SpaceNews reported Friday.
The agreements, dubbed Artemis Accords, will cover all lunar exploration activities except for the lunar Gateway and support the establishment of “safety zones” to allow NASA and other stakeholders’ program operations without human interference.
Activities supporting the Gateway will be authorized through a separate intergovernmental agreement, according to SpaceNews.
Mike Gold, acting associate administrator for international and interagency relations at NASA, said at a prior interview with the publication that the agency may also provide incentives to participating countries that comply with U.S. principles.
Jim Bridenstine, administrator of NASA and 2019 Wash100 Award recipient, said at a prior meeting that the agency needs a "framework for how we’re all going to cooperate on the surface of the moon.”
The announcement comes after NASA completed an interagency review in a move to secure approval to share program documentation with other countries, according to Gold.