New Space and Tech

The X PRIZE Foundation Appoints Alexandra Hall to Senior Director

By Keith Cowing
April 8, 2013
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The X PRIZE Foundation announced today that Alexandra Hall has joined the Foundation as the Senior Director of the $30 million Google Lunar X PRIZE, a private race to the moon designed to enable commercial exploration of space while engaging the global public. Hall brings a wealth of experience in both the private and public sectors in USA and Europe to the X PRIZE Foundation. As the co-founder and former CEO of Airship Ventures, a company that uses airships for passenger flights, science research and media purposes, Hall is credited with breaking new ground in aviation by bringing Zeppelin airships back to the U.S. after 70 years.
Prior to her position at Airship Ventures, Hall served as the Executive Director of the Chabot Space & Science Center in Oakland, CA, where she managed fundraising efforts, developed exhibitions and led major programs with school district, university and agency partners. Hall has a degree in Astrophysics from the University of Leicester in United Kingdom and is regarded as a leader in bringing space and astronomy to the public, having authored several books for children and adults about space and hosted BBC Television’s “Final Frontier.”

“Alexandra has proven to be a leader and entrepreneur in the aviation and space industries,” said Robert K. Weiss, Vice Chairman & President of the X PRIZE Foundation. “Her breadth of experience and passion for space exploration are key to attaining our goal of igniting this new and exciting race to the Moon.”

Hall will draw on her professional experience and enthusiasm for space exploration to manage all aspects of the Google Lunar X PRIZE at the X PRIZE Foundation. As the largest incentive prize of all time, the Google Lunar X PRIZE aims to create a new era of lunar exploration that will be more participatory and more sustainable than the first moon race of the 1960’s. The Grand Prize will be awarded to the first team to safely land a robot on the surface of the Moon, have the robot travel 500 meters over the lunar surface and send video and images back to Earth.

“I believe that solving today’s global challenges requires us to think beyond that which is just outside our window,” said Hall. “Potential solutions to the many problems close to home exist with the development of resources in space.”

One of Hall’s first responsibilities in her new role will be overseeing the Google Lunar X PRIZE Team Summit on July 11-12 in Mountain View, CA. The Summit will give the teams from around the world an opportunity to interact with representatives from X PRIZE Foundation, Google and NASA as they continue to develop their lunar rovers. Hall will play an integral part in the two-day summit where team leaders will also network, share ideas and work toward the greater goal of expanding space exploration.

For more information about the Google Lunar X PRIZE and the teams currently registered in the competition, visit


Founded in 1995, the X PRIZE Foundation is the leading non-profit organization solving the world’s greatest challenges through creating and managing large-scale, high-profile, incentivized prize competitions that stimulate investment in research and development worth far more than the prize itself. The organization motivates and inspires brilliant innovators from all disciplines and socio-economic sectors to endow their intellectual and financial capital for the benefit of humanity. The X PRIZE Foundation conducts competitions in four Prize Groups: Education & Global Development; Energy & Environment; Life Sciences; and Exploration. Past prizes include the $10 million Ansari X PRIZE for sending the world’s first private vehicle into space and back; and the $10 million Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE for creating safe, affordable, production-capable vehicles that exceed 100 MPG or energy equivalent (MPGe). Active prizes include the $30 million Google Lunar X PRIZE, the $10 million Archon Genomics X PRIZE, and the $1.4 million Wendy Schmidt Oil Cleanup X CHALLENGE. For more information, visit


The $30 million Google Lunar X PRIZE is an unprecedented international competition that challenges and inspires engineers and entrepreneurs from around the world to develop low-cost methods of robotic space exploration. The $30 million prize purse is segmented into a $20 million Grand Prize, a $5 million Second Prize and $5 million in Bonus Prizes. To win the Grand Prize, a team must successfully soft land a privately funded spacecraft on the Moon, rove on the lunar surface for a minimum of 500 meters, and transmit a specific set of video, images and data back to the Earth. The Grand Prize is $20 million until December 31st 2012; thereafter it will drop to $15 million until December 31st 2014 at which point the competition will be terminated unless extended by Google and the X PRIZE Foundation. For more information about the Google Lunar X PRIZE, visit

Media Contact: Alan Zack (310) 741-4904

SpaceRef co-founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.