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Aerospace & Defense Industries

To the moon: Japanese insurers leap into lunar exploration

Mitsui Sumitomo and Tokio Marine to offer coverage for private-sector missions

Ispace plans to send a craft to the moon this year. (Image courtesy of the company) 

TOKYO -- Two major Japanese insurers are developing policies for commercial lunar exploration, offering a safety net to encourage private-sector companies to enter a risky and expensive but potentially lucrative field.

Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance will offer policies for lunar landers, compensating developers if a craft fails to touch down. Companies will likely pay around 1 billion yen ($8 million) per launch for 10 billion yen in coverage -- the potential cost of a failed mission, including launch expenses.

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