Summary of Rules and Requirements:
The $30 million Google Lunar XPRIZE will be awarded to the first privately funded teams to build robots that successfully land on the lunar surface, explore the Moon by moving at least 500 meters (~1/3 of a mile), and return high definition video and imagery.
The competition's grand prize is worth $20 million. To provide an extra incentive for teams to work quickly, the grand prize value will change to $15 million whenever a government-funded mission successfully explores the lunar surface, currently projected to occur in 2013.
Additionally, a second place prize of $5 million will be available for the second team to complete the competition objectives. $4 million in bonus prizes are available for achieving other specific mission objectives, including operation at night; traveling more than 5km over the lunar surface; detection of water; and precision landing near an Apollo site or other lunar sites of interest (such as landing/crash sites of man-made space hardware).
Lastly, a $1 million award will go to the team that demonstrates the greatest attempts to promote diversity in the field of space exploration.
To ensure that teams develop technologies and capabilities that will allow for financially sustainable lunar exploration, the Google Lunar XPRIZE requires that teams receive a large majority of the funds necessary to mount their mission from private sources, such as customers, investors, sponsors, and donors. However, teams are welcomed—indeed, encouraged—to seek government customers willing to purchase services and data at commercially reasonable rates. The new era of lunar exploration, Moon 2.0, thrives on being international and participatory, and derives much of its strength from the cooperation and collaboration between civil space agencies and private firms; Google Lunar XPRIZE teams that can identify and sign government customers are demonstrating their ability to be vital components of this new era.
The Google Lunar XPRIZE expires whenever all prizes are claimed, or at the end of 2015.
The complete and binding set of rules for the competition is contained in a document called the "Master Team Agreement" -- a binding contract signed between each individual team and the XPRIZE Foundation. Currently the Master Team Agreement is being finalized in coordination between the XPRIZE Foundation, Google, and the competing teams.
As of midnight on December 31st, 2010, the team registration for the Google Lunar XPRIZE is closed. No additional applicants will be accepted to join the competition.