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Look out, moon. A private company has sent its lunar-lander steering system on a test flight, taking one small step towards a planned moon mission next year.

Astrobotic of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, is one of 18 teams competing for the Google Lunar X Prize, which offers $20 million to the first private group that lands a spacecraft on the moon, has it travel at least 500 metres, and receives two videos from their lunar vehicle. And all by the end of 2015.

This week Astrobotic released video (above) of a rocket launching and landing in the Mojave desert using their hazard-detection system, which will ultimately be part of the moon lander. This uses cameras and lasers to guide the lander towards a safe touchdown.

To read more and view the video, click here.