TransOrbital is a California-based company which became the first private company granted U.S. government permission to explore, photograph, and land on the moon. The company has been covered in over 2,000 news articles worldwide, and announced a sponsorship agreement with Hewlett-Packard in 2003. The company has not yet launched the TrailBlazer lunar orbiter, which hopes to be the first privately funded mission to the Moon.
TransOrbital launched a test spacecraft into orbit in 2002 aboard a Dnepr launch vehicle. The satellite is a 420 kg test article that orbits the earth every 97 minutes.