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Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

Posted September 22, 2009 7:00 AM by tinypilot18
Pathfinder Tags: Moon NASA outer space Space Station

Humans seem naturally inclined to explore the unknown. From Manifest Destiny to the New Frontier and beyond, Americans and their colonial ancestors have proven this point by exploring (and conquering) new lands. Today, humanity has long since explored every habitable area on planet Earth.

With our ever-expanding population, is it time to explore other places to live? According to a recent NBC poll, 29.8% of respondents believed that NASA will never return to the Moon. Some 32% said that the American space agency would, but not in their lifetime.

One Giant Leap for Mankind?

NASA plans to defy its doubters by building a lunar outpost on the Moon. Construction will begin in 2019 and last five years. Fittingly, Congress has directed that the U.S. part of the lunar station be called the "Neil A. Armstrong Lunar Outpost", a reference to the American astronaut who became the first human to set on the moon in 1969.

On December 4, 2006, NASA concluded its Global Exploration Strategy and Lunar Architecture Study. The result was a plan for a lunar outpost near one of the Moon's poles that could permanently house astronauts in six-month shifts. The outpost will be staffed by a mixed crew and supplied by an Altair Lander that is capable of carrying four astronauts and a six-ton payload to the Moon.

Current plans show an incremental buildup with four-person crews making several seven-day visits to the Moon until their power supplies, rovers, and living quarters are operational. This will begin in 2020, followed by 180-day missions to prepare for journeys to Mars.

Projects and Polls

The justification that NASA provides for the project is life-and-death. A lunar outpost isn't just about scientific exploration. Rather, it's about extending the range of human habitat outside of Earth's limits. "In the long run, a single-planet species will not survive. If we humans want to survive for hundreds of thousands or millions of years, we must ultimately populate other planets," the space agency explains.

A poll by the Discovery Channel reveals that 73% of respondents favor returning to the Moon as a stepping stone towards other endeavors, with only 27% opposed. What do you think? Join the discussion by leaving a comment below.

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#1

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/22/2009 8:02 AM

Yes - Can I forward some names?

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#14
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Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 7:07 AM

Al Gore?

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#16
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Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 8:10 AM

He'll only go if theres money in it for him.

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#18
In reply to #16

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 10:38 AM

If we tie him up first really good and shove him into the nosecone really hard, he'll go...=b

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#2

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/22/2009 8:22 AM

Yes I definitely feel that colonizing the moon is a great idea. I know several individuals whom I would love to send there and beyond if possible!

The problem with colonizing the moon is the initial cost. This cost would last for years due to the fact that it could take decades for Tera forming to take hold, if it ever does. That means that we would need to continue to supply the inhabitants for as long as it takes to get them on their own. Then what happens if our space programs turn to crap here on Earth? Those transplants are on their own on a planet that cannot support life. Ooooooooooh very bad.

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#3

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/22/2009 1:30 PM

no explanation necessary

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#4

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/22/2009 3:16 PM

Yes. I feel our government would work much more effectively if politicians were sequestered there.

Let's build a B ark.

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#5

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/22/2009 5:04 PM

We should return to the moon eventually for both pure scientific research and as a potential stepping stone for further manned exploration of our solar system. If we are not able to support a presence on the moon, then we are not really ready to send manned missions any further out.

With the current global economic situation, now may not be the best time to re-start manned moon missions. MANY of the technologies we take for granted today came out of NASA and related space research efforts and I am in favor of increased NASA funding. I just hope they use that funding responsibly to build a better platform for future space development and exploration. Let's get that next generation of ground-to-orbit and space station technology rolling first, then evaluate the next steps to return to the moon.

Forming a lunar base is not currently a realistic option. However, I'm optimistic that new technologies will arise (within the next 50 years?) to make construction and resupply of a lunar base as common as resupply trips to McMurdo Antarctica are today.

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#6

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/22/2009 6:21 PM

This topic has been talked about before from a different viewpoint.

This is one of them.

To get a strong surge of interest there has to be a strong reason. In the 60's it was the competitiveness between the USA and USSR. Some try to redo it (NASA) to get interest back by substituting China in for USSR.

Even though rocketing by the seat of the pants some of our beloved, over paid, over sexed, health insurance paid for.......ect. statesmen to the moon is nice and satisfying to think about. Something more solid has to happen.

Such as a very large if not controversy discovery to get support.

p911

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#7
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Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/22/2009 8:20 PM

"Such as a very large if not controversy discovery to get support."

Ah... you mean something like TMA-1.

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#8
In reply to #7

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/22/2009 8:25 PM

Noww....I didn't say thhaaatt.... .....but yes.

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#13
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Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 6:43 AM

The original TMA ("To the Moon Alice"!) ?

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#11
In reply to #6

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 1:09 AM

Agree with Phoenix911.

In the 60's it was realized that a nuclear war based on massive retaliation strategy (game of numbers) was not winnable. A breakthrough was needed through some Strategic Initiative that should be prohibitively expensive for the competitor i.e. USSR. Moon was available to place weapons and sensors in the 1960s. Hence the interest in space missions. It isn't now. There is no incentive in redoing moon because SDI is in place in earth's orbit since 1984. The equation holds even after substituting China for USSR.

While countless other benefits have spun off space technology (GIS, medicine, telecom, etc.) the moon is still resistant to colonization. Human beings have traditionally colonized places that were life-friendly to begin with. It was as true of Babyloon as it is of green-pasture lands today. Moon is far less hostitable than even Antarctica. It would take a lot of persuation to colonize our Robinson Crusoe Mk II on moon. And how about Mrs. Crusoe? Or is it just stags?

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#9

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/22/2009 11:47 PM

The problem is (as is usual) the UN. The UN Treaty on Space makes private ownership of any lunar real estate or mineral resource illegal. In order to get this idea off the drawing boards and actually in process, private entities will have to fund it. Until there is the possibility of a profit motive (which requires private property rights) it will not happen.

Would I go? hell yes! and if anyone tries to kick me off my He3 or cometary ice claim, they'll get their space suit ventilated for free. They can even keep the lead.

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#10

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/22/2009 11:58 PM

Hell Yes!

And as far as the UN is concerned, aren't we (US) the people who regularly thumb our nose at the rest of the world and do what we want? Why is that even a question?

We should immediately start sending massive quantities of CO2 to the moon! But I guess it would just float off into space but it would be nice to warm it up a bit. The temperature extremes would be a serious problem in terms of energy.

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#12

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 6:30 AM

hey if anyone goes there

can you look around

for my watch

I seam to have missed placed it

and wipe your feet before you go into my lunar pad

gee I think before we go there

we need to take care of a fee issues here

like Aaaa...

I do not want to have to ware a hard hat

when I am taking my midnight walk down San a Monica beach

cause some idiot got tic-ed on the moon

and started throwing lunar rocks in space

by the way

what time will the juice bars be closing there

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#15

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 8:03 AM

A lunar base is the first stepping stone into space with intent to develop a future that may be the saving of humanity as a species. A habitable space station in a stable orbit is the obvious next step. Considerable resources may be available from the moon saving serious amounts of money otherwise necessary for materials to build the space station. We are talking about something big enough to house 10,000 people in space with artificial gravity via the rotation of the space station.

This space station alone could provide an island of humanity that would be necessary to take any other steps into places unknown.

Some estimates are that our galaxy contains more than 1000 earth like planets. Getting to one of them would be the challenge for future generations.

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#17

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 10:28 AM

I don't think it's a good idea. Unless we can get something out of it that will give us a return on our investment, I don't think now is a good time for investing in such a program.

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#19
In reply to #17

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 10:40 AM

IMO The return investment is not direct. And the time has never been

right.

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#24
In reply to #17

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 5:31 PM

If not now, then when? I read a thought provoking observation (pretty sure here on CR4, but cannot remember. If I am plagarizing someone, please come forward and claim this), something like this: "Man landed on the moon 40 years ago, and what has really been the common benefit? Henry Ford created mass production of automobiles, and within 40 years, cars were everywhere, as was mass production. Wright Brothers first flew a powered aircraft, and within 40 years, commercial flying was worldwide."

Food for thought... I have pondered this, and whoever I stole copied wrote this has, I believe, a cogent point. Most certainly space travel is ex$pensive and risky; as opposed to building a factory to utilize an unproven assembly technique, to manufacture an item people may not buy? As opposed to experiments and tests of airframes airfoils, powerplants, fuels, safety and comfort systems... ad naseum, all for an airplane that people might not buy a ticket to ride in. In addition to both of these, the debt we have shared to provide infrastructure for these two examples.

While many benefits to mankind have come from varied space programs, I reject the common paradigms of TANG, Velcro, TEFLON coated pans... Someone would have figured out a way to fry an egg without sticking anyway.

Would I support colonization of the moon? As described in the blog, yes I would. Every advancement of any substance has had some element of risk. I believe the return on investment has every possibility of being immense. My opening question (If not now, then when) reflects my opinion we should never have dropped the ball. A colony/habitat/station should already be in place, we have squandered a valuable resource (TIME) justifying that waste as preservation of another resource (MONEY).

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#26
In reply to #24

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 5:43 PM

Since you admitted you did not write it, it is not plagiarized, but it was worth repeating.

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#27
In reply to #24

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 5:46 PM

Good points Doorman, but remember, when Henry Ford mass produces autos, he was gambling that if the idea paid off he would be rich, it did and he was. Orville and Wilbur gambled that if they could figure out how to build an airplane, people would pay money to fly in one or to own one. They were right and they made a nice tidy profit from it. the problem with human spaceflight is that it is still a government monopoly. And the UN treaty I mentioned earlier ensures that it always will be a government monopoly. Who would build an outpost on the moon, if they could not own the land it sat upon, or the lunar materials it was built from? Who would build an outpost to mine say helium 3, or oxygen, or Silicon to make high quality chip wafers or solar panels or whatever on the moon if the next guy that had a wild hair could come along and take it away without any legal or moral consequences? What happens when you can't even legally own the air you breathe? Who would risk the billions of dollars it would take to get there and develop the infrastructure to go there and stay a while if there was no profit motive possible? Until that is rectified, the aerospace companies who certainly know how to get there and do that, won't bother and will remain happy to simply supply custom made hardware and services to the government instead of doing it themselves for their own reasons.

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#28
In reply to #27

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 5:58 PM

the problem with human spaceflight is that it is still a government monopoly.

Let history play itself out.

And the UN treaty I mentioned earlier ensures that it always will be a government monopoly.

UN treaty's, it isn't worth the paper its written on unless the USA takes it upon themselves to enforce it.

I am please that Obama had the balls to stand up to them.

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#33
In reply to #28

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 6:13 PM

Space tourism will not be the "killer app" for spaceflight. it might be fine for sub-orbital and orbital jaunts since property rights don't enter into it, but that is not space exploration. Certainly not for tourism to the moon. After all, if you can't legally own the facility, how will you be able to charge people for it's use? You are confusing supplying hardware with space exploration, they are not the same thing.

And Obama didn't stand up to anybody. He went to the UN with lips puckered and a lot of people got their arse kissed as a result. The best thing that could happen to the UN is it's disbandment. It is a waste of oxygen.

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#38
In reply to #33

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 6:49 PM

Space tourism will not be the "killer app" for spaceflight.

Neither was the first flight at Kitty Hawk.

After all, if you can't legally own the facility, how will you be able to charge people for it's use?

These people would be recognized as outfitters. People know the risk.

You are confusing supplying hardware with space exploration, they are not the same thing.

No, but space exploration can not happen without it.

I was just submitting a response to your post #27. And for people who do not believe its feasible/profitable or it not the right time for it.

I am just glad there are the Henry Fords, Wright Brothers today. Such as Richard Branson to be able to try this. Will it be successful......???? Who knows.

Ford needed to make several attempts until he was successful. ( he learned by his failed attempts)

I actually more in favor of space exploration, with long term returns. Which is traditionally backed by governments. Just due to the risks and failures that are going to be associated with and are more absorbed and would not break a private entrepreneur.

Interesting how efficient Virgin is going to handle the risks and failures.

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#29
In reply to #27

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 6:00 PM

Neither the space can be owned by anyone, and we have the MIR and a whole lot of satellites in orbit.

So, What happens when you can't even legally own the air you breathe? well certainly not the posibility of being suffocated by someone else without any legal or moral consequences.

Yahlasit

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#35
In reply to #29

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 6:19 PM

Orbit does not count, no property rights are involved. And by the way MIR is no longer in orbit, it was brought down years ago.

I would dearly love to see the UN try to enforce this treaty. I would love for someone to build a privately built spacecraft, land it on a heavenly body, have someone step out and say, I hereby claim this real estate, come and take it from me if you dare. But I'mafraid they'll never try as long as the treaty is in effect.

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#31
In reply to #27

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 6:03 PM

Dear Doorman,

Actually I did download from the Yale Avalon Law Project the International Space Treaty, and I do not remember much prohibition of Private Enterprise in that law.

Actually it would appear that what that particular bit of international law was most concerned with prohibiting was the militarization of Outer Space.

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#40
In reply to #31

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 9:19 PM

Tman, Unfortunately that is not the case:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Outer_Space_Treaty

"

Key points of the Treaty

The Outer Space Treaty represents the basic legal framework of international space law. Among its principles, it bars States Parties to the Treaty from placing nuclear weapons or any other weapons of mass destruction in orbit of Earth, installing them on the Moon or any other celestial body, or to otherwise station them in outer space. It exclusively limits the use of the Moon and other celestial bodies to peaceful purposes and expressly prohibits their use for testing weapons of any kind, conducting military maneuvers, or establishing military bases, installations, and fortifications (Art.IV). However, the Treaty does not prohibit the placement of conventional weapons in orbit.

The treaty explicitly forbids any government from claiming a celestial resource such as the Moon or a planet, since they are the Common heritage of mankind.[1] Art. II of the Treaty states, in fact, that "outer space, including the Moon and other celestial bodies, is not subject to national appropriation by claim of sovereignty, by means of use or occupation, or by any other means". The pendant for giving up sovereignty in outer space is the jurisdiction and control that the State that launches a space object retains. According to Manfred Lachs, jurisdiction and control is giving the means to the State to conduct a mission of space exploration."

Therefore anything you actually launch is yours. Anything that was already there, including resources you might need to utilize is not yours, cannot be yours, and never will be yours. One could argue (and people have) that it does not apply to individuals, but the courts have ruled that it applies to nationals of any signatory to the treaty, whether they are acting on their own or at the behest of their government.

"Article VI of the Outer Space Treaty deals with international responsibility, stating that "the activities of non-governmental entities in outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, shall require authorization and continuing supervision by the appropriate State Party to the Treaty" and that States Parties shall bear international responsibility for national space activities whether carried out by governmental or non-governmental entities."

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#45
In reply to #40

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 11:02 PM

How mamy of the UN treaty's that were broken?

And what did the UN do about it?

And without the U.S. envolvement?

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#46
In reply to #45

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 11:11 PM

too true. I would really like someone to actually do this and tell the UN: "SCREW YOU!"

but what will happen is that political pressure will be put on the government from which the private entity hails from to reign in their wayward citizens or else. The GOVERNMENT will be the ones with enforcement powers, not the UN.

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#48
In reply to #46

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 11:22 PM

I agree whole heartedly.

IMO Most of the reason the UN exist is for a communications channel/link between governments. It doesn't carry much bite.

Except when some of the 5 permanent members on the Security Counsel don't see the UN reacting to thier own procliamations, and take it upon themselve to enforce it.

p911

wonder if tiny pilot is following the topic she started?

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#36
In reply to #24

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 6:34 PM

I agree with most of these points.

The reasons cars and airplanes were so successful so quickly was that they provided a very useful service AND huge profits for their developers. That same combination of utility and quick return on investment is unlikely to occur in our space program. However, shutting down exploration and development just because there is no quick profit in sight would be a dreadful mistake.

fyi... it's OK to

"reject the common paradigms of TANG, Velcro, TEFLON coated pans..."

since none of these were developed as part of the space program. Used by astronauts for sure and good inventions mostly (not so sure about TANG), their origins in the space program are just silly myths that won't die

http://archives.chicagotribune.com/2007/mar/05/business/chi-0703050135mar05

A few of the real space spin-offs are listed here...

http://space.about.com/od/toolsequipment/ss/apollospinoffs.htm

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#58
In reply to #36

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/24/2009 10:42 AM

mjb1962853: I am not as certain as you that a combination of utility and quick return is unlikely to occur in our space program. I am a great believer in "Ya don't know what ya don't know". I am certain that anything of utility or return will NOT occur if we do not investigate, question, inspect, poke, and prod our surroundings, gleaning knowledge from both the sheer experience and any discoveries made. While the discoveries may be few and far between, the human experience is a thrilling ride sometimes. I can still recall watching the moon landing (age 11), and the absolute feeling of connection with the event. Man, I just had a rush thinking about it.

This is a wonderful time in human history to be here. I just hope we don't stop to smell the roses, and then decide we have seen enough. I agree, "shutting down exploration and development just because there is no quick profit in sight would be a dreadful mistake."

Nice chatting with you

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#59
In reply to #58

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/24/2009 11:47 AM

I can think of a relatively straightforward space mission that would result in direct economic return. find a small metallic Earth orbit crossing asteroid, perturb it so that it enters orbit around the Earth and mine it for Nickel. smelting and refining should be a snap to accomplish in orbit. You've got all the power you could want from solar energy, and you've got the best vacuum money can't buy. refine a slug of it, attach a small rocket and guidance package to deorbit the slug and let it impact out in the desert and go dig it up. all relatively easy and can be accomplished using current technology. building the space tug to guide the asteroid into earth orbit will be the biggest issue. Most of the job can be done robotically. There'd be enough nickel in that one asteroid that if it all went onto the market at once it would destroy the current nickel markets. Luckily if you could own the asteroid you could control how fast it was released onto the market and thereby keep the cost low enough that nobody could afford to duplicate your effort.

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#20

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 11:27 AM

"In the long run, a single-planet species will not survive..."

It would appear that building an outpost on the Moon would advance our long term interests, and be a bit less expensive than an L5 sort of space station.

-at least at this time.

On one hand the outpost is ambitious, and on the other not ambitious enough.

Personally I think the aim ought to be to create as soon as possible vehicles and stations that will acommidate a minimum near Earth and Moon presence of 200 human beings consistently.

I feel that they really ought to have as a dedicated mission Planet Defense as opposed to simply being there as a "seed bank".

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#21

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 12:03 PM

This is something that humans must do. We are a planet virus. Now that we have our present one on the seriously ill list, it is time begin the infection(exploitation) of other planets until all the planets in the universe are dead. This will take a long time, but time is eternal. Then, when whatever this universe is part of gets sick and takes a pill, it will kill us all.

Seriously, we are a curious people. As a whole, we cannot sit by and wonder about space without going there to see it first hand. The space program has more than paid for itself in new technology. There is no reason to think it won't continue to do so.

Let's go!

Tommm

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#22

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 2:54 PM

Expansion lands ? I don't think so.

If we don't create an athmosphere and water bodies there (with unsustainable ecological cost for the earth), then people would have to live imprissoned in a buliding that wouldn't hold millions of human beings, we'd have to send only a few "neutered" chosen ones; or allow them to reproduce, but bring their children here; thus defeating the purpose of "colonizing" missions.

It would only be spending tons of money just to maintain a collony of homesick people 'till they die.

Why not invest on hyper speed and try to find a planet with bio-diversity or capable of supporting it ?

Our rockets are still based on solid fuels because they don't need air to burn ! the Chinese developed this very, very long ago.

Yahlasit

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#23
In reply to #22

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 4:14 PM

I'm afraid you are mistaken on a number of levels. all truly high performance rockets are liquid fueled. Secondly, there is no known physical law that we have yet found that would allow us to travel to even the closest star, much less the closest habitable one, within the lifespan of a human, The best we could possibly hope for would be a ship big enough, with enough people, willing to go on a multi-generational, one way trip. Which by the way a moon base would be a good place to work on the technologies that would be required for that.

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#25
In reply to #23

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 5:36 PM

Ok, I agree, but anyway I think fuels are not the way to go, that's why I think we need to invest on developing hyper speed.

There are cosmic particles which mean life is so short, that even if they traveled at light speed, they couldn't have come from too far away, not even the closest star.

Where did they come from, and how?

Yahlasit

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#30

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 6:01 PM

I believe in setting goals such as aiming to oneday colonise the moon, however this to me is unrealistic until man ACTUALLY sets foot on the moon.

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#32
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Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 6:08 PM

Or any other outer place where the man's hand has never set foot.

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#34
In reply to #30

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 6:15 PM

Uh, that happened. I watched it live as a child. I know people who worked to make it happen. I've met and spoken to people who have been there. You can shove your tin-foil hat where the sun does not shine my friend.

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#37
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Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 6:39 PM

WOW it must have been cool to have known Stanley Kubrick.

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#41
In reply to #37

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 9:21 PM

Tell me, what color is they sky on your planet?

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#43
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Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 10:31 PM

Thanks for looking the law up.

I still find it mostly concerned with more inhibiting militarization of outerspace, than inhibiting private peaceful use of moon real estate, or orbit tragectory.

(my wife will fight with me over the dictionary tonight, so I'm sorry.)

Article 13, XIII allows for practical questions, and it is a practical question for "Homesteaders" on the Moon to ask, if their investments are protected by private property laws common on Earth. Maritime law, may have precedent trump cases that are applicable. Certainly there are a bunch of satellites orbiting for private business interests without any great complaint. Really they ought to be sending me a check weekly for using my headspace. That would be practical from my point of view.

Article 15, XV allows amendments to the treaty.

I think all Transcendians will support amendments that advance private enterprise Moon homesteading and "seed bank" colonization efforts. I gottah pay lawyers for Trademark and copyright issues. A few extra bucks and I'll pay 'em for Moon Homesteading Right clearances by Lease if you like.

Article 16 XVI, says we can withdraw from the treaty if we give a years notice in writing. Should Transcendia withdraw from the International Space Treaty or not?

As I say, Everybody hates a Lawyer, till you need one.

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#44
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Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 10:47 PM

If you never ratified it, you don't have to withdraw from it. =b

Yes, it WAS mostly about WMD's in space. (it did not address conventional weapons however.) but it tries to make heavenly bodies the same as open ocean, and I really think that is logical stretch at best. To be honest if it ever made it to the SCOTUS, I think it would be tossed out probably as an unconstitutional restraint on private property rights, but that is by no means a sure bet.

Yeah, this is kind of a sore point with me. I've been ranting to every politician I can bend the ear of about it. Hopefully one of them will eventually listen. But I'm not holding my breath. I'm starting to think being elected to public office requires a near total lobotomy before inauguration.

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#47
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Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 11:11 PM

Here's a thought: just do it, land on the moon set up a HE3 factory. Then if someone says "you can't do that", say "watch me". Look at it this way: you will have the base, the ability to defend it, (believe me a mining laser WILL knock a missile, a spacecraft or any other intruder out of orbit) and if you are selling He3, (by the way, it comes from the sun and is just deposited on the moon), you'll have the money to resupply.

The HE3 is a renewable resource just like the sunlight that is used for solar cells. A HE3 plant is just the "refining" step between source and use. No one has ever told the inventors and manufacturers of solar cells they can't use the sunlight.

The treaty was designed to limit WMD deployment in space. If someone challenges the treaty over commercial usage it will fall.

Regards Dragon

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#50
In reply to #47

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 11:27 PM

The UN will go the way of the League of Nations.

Aw, they'll just change their name again, to "The United Federation of Planets".

To regain temporary credibility

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#51
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Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 11:50 PM

What's HE3?

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#52
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Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/24/2009 12:02 AM

He3 or Helium 3 is an isotope of standard Helium or Helium 4. The difference is in the nucleus of the atom. Normal Helium has two protons, two neutrons and two electrons. Helium 3 has only one neutron and is the only known source (using at least two methods) of SUSTAINED nuclear Fusion. Tested with the small quantities brought back in the lunar rocks from the Apollo missions.

Buried in the lunar regalith, over an area roughly a square mile, ten feet deep, (by current calculations of course) is enough HE3 to power the city of New York for a YEAR. And it is renewed constantly by the solar wind.

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#53
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Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/24/2009 12:05 AM

I understand that there is enough energy in the equivalent of a space shuttle load of He3 to power the USA for a year. Just need that those fusion reactors and moon mining facilities and... well a bit of infrastructure.

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#54
In reply to #52

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/24/2009 12:43 AM

Lets go get some.

Sounds like a good idea.

Don't tell those guys at the UN, okay?

We'll sneak it into Los Alamos, and then hook the Fusion machine to the Grid.

I think we really need to keep this a secret from the Chinese.

You're not Russian are you?

Don't tell them about this either.

We can tell the French and the Germans, maybe, I guess.

Can we just give a few rocks of this regalith to Consolidated Ed over there on 23rd street every 5 years or so, and all be 123volts everywhere all the time?

Can we let the Italians and the Japanese in on this?

Actually I like some of the dog eaters too. It is a secret that I like some of the Koreans I've known.

Is there any chance we could use solar panels instead of HE3 to get the power we need?

Just kidding, of course not.

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#55
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Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/24/2009 12:53 AM

Is there any chance we could use solar panels instead of HE3 to get the power we need?

Just kidding, of course not.

We're 50 years behind the curve on that. I install PV's and micro-hydro for a living and have no illusions of PV's being the panacea... too little, too late. So far there is nothing as cheap as sucking energy from holes in the ground and creaming mountain tops for coal...

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#49
In reply to #44

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 11:23 PM

All Righty Then!

What's SCOTUS?

Become a Politician Yourself! I hear Lobotomies don't hurt much.

Here I am Founder of a Country, declaring wars, and collecting two, TWO guns for my Arsenal, and nobody pays attention.

Lawyers, Lobbyists, That's what I need!

Dammit why won't Disneyland and the UN attack me?

P.S. I did declare war on Asteroids and Comets last year April Fools.

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#56
In reply to #49

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/24/2009 7:57 AM

SCOTUS=Supreme Court of the United States.

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#39
In reply to #30

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 7:00 PM

Really?

Man has never gone to the moon?

Is the earth flat and at the center of the universe too?

Try looking outside here sometime.

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#60
In reply to #30

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/26/2009 7:46 AM

hear hear finally somebody being realistic.

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#42

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/23/2009 10:23 PM

When our energy resources become scarce and overwhelmingly expensive, and we have figured out nuclear fusion, He3 will draw us to the Moon out of necessity. Until then it seems way too expensive to be worthwhile. BTW if one is to believe the current paradigm of this civilization is going to keep chugging along, invest in companies looking to extract He3 from the Moon, as it appears to be the only real alternative to fossil fuels. Shares in a company doing this might be worth billions in 20 or 30 years.

Of a course a billion ($) is not what it used to be... maybe trillions then...

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#57

Re: Do You Support Colonization of the Moon?

09/24/2009 9:34 AM

BTW, it has been announced that the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter has found water on the moon. About 32 oz in a ton of regolith.

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