Moon base plans and research?

Oct 14, 2019
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I'm a student and I usually try to theme my projects around space and planets. Mars is pretty current in the headlines and popular so I want to find different areas to study.
For instance, does anyone here think we can build a self-sustaining station on the moon where people can live? Any article links and research papers are welcome.
Thank you
 

jpishgar

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Aug 22, 2019
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There was a really fantastic video that was done up on this last year by Kurzgesagt on YouTube that provides a whole guide on how to setup a moon base, and how we could actually make it happen today.


And there have been several articles on the subject here on Space.com as well, including plans to develop a moon base for human inhabitants by using autonomous robots.


Not to mention some ideas for the architecture of such places!

 
Oct 21, 2019
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I'm a student and I usually try to theme my projects around space and planets. Mars is pretty current in the headlines and popular so I want to find different areas to study.
For instance, does anyone here think we can build a self-sustaining station on the moon where people can live? Any article links and research papers are welcome.
Thank you
Sustainable Self-Reliant on the Moon would be difficult. There is literally no data on long term effects of low gravity on humans. Intuitively, I would think that .38 g on Mars would be tolerable over the long term, but 1/6th g on the Moon would probably not be. If inhabitants must be shuttled back and forth to Earth periodically (every year or two), then the station would not be self-sustaining.
Also, though there are claims of water ice being found in polar craters, IMO that seems unlikely, or rare.

I am unaware of any hard science on either of those.
 
Nov 24, 2019
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I'm a student and I usually try to theme my projects around space and planets. Mars is pretty current in the headlines and popular so I want to find different areas to study.
For instance, does anyone here think we can build a self-sustaining station on the moon where people can live? Any article links and research papers are welcome.
Thank you
Hi I’m a student too doing a project on Moon bases! You can check my thread but I just wanted to ask if you have found any info since posting this?
 
Jan 13, 2020
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There is literally no data on long term effects of low gravity on humans. Intuitively, I would think that .38 g on Mars would be tolerable over the long term, but 1/6th g on the Moon would probably not be. If inhabitants must be shuttled back and forth to Earth periodically (every year or two), then the station would not be self-sustaining.
Yeah, gravity is the elephant in the room. If it turns out to be the case you have to have 100% earth gravity in order to not suffer physical maladies, I guess we're going to have to build centrifuges on the Moon and Mars in which people can live... :-O

Mars also has the issue of have a lot of perchlorate in the soil. That could be a major problem, because it's a toxic substance. In certain places here in Silicon Valley, it's been found in the groundwater, and those sources had to be filtered.


Also, though there are claims of water ice being found in polar craters, IMO that seems unlikely, or rare.
Presumably it was proven in 2018...

 
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Jan 10, 2020
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I'm a student and I usually try to theme my projects around space and planets. Mars is pretty current in the headlines and popular so I want to find different areas to study.
For instance, does anyone here think we can build a self-sustaining station on the moon where people can live? Any article links and research papers are welcome.
Thank you
 
Jan 10, 2020
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Building a basic base is one thing. A self sustaining one something else. Entire nations are dependent on trade. Just your laptop contains chips and stuff manufactured in factories all over the planet. A base will always be dependent on trade. To be financially independent such a base will need to find a resource for trade, something earth needs. This could be mining He3 on the surface. Then of course there are all the other issues like effects of zero G, radiation protection etc.
 
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Jan 10, 2020
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Building a basic base is one thing. A self sustaining one something else. Entire nations are dependent on trade. Just your laptop contains chips and stuff manufactured in factories all over the planet. A base will always be dependent on trade. To be financially independent such a base will need to find a resource for trade, something earth needs. This could be mining He3 on the surface. Then of course there are all the other issues like effects of zero G, radiation protection etc.
 
Jan 10, 2020
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I will add more. He3 will only continue to be a resource if fusion reactors become established on earth. Another possible resource is rare earth metals. These are located in concentrations on the moon where meteors deposited them. Of course none of this mining will be viable if transport costs do not reduce. You need to research to see if Elon's starship could bring down costs sufficiently to make it worthwhile to get these minerals back to earth. If not, I cannot see how a colony can be financially independent.
 
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Jan 13, 2020
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There was a really fantastic video that was done up on this last year by Kurzgesagt on YouTube that provides a whole guide on how to setup a moon base, and how we could actually make it happen today.


And there have been several articles on the subject here on Space.com as well, including plans to develop a moon base for human inhabitants by using autonomous robots.


Not to mention some ideas for the architecture of such places!

As I understand it, any Moon base would have to remain in orbit, due to Moonquakes. These would shake to pieces any structure we attempt to place on the moon.
 
Jan 10, 2020
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After seeing what you said about moonquakes I looked it up. You are right (I did not know about the seriousness of them). Inflatable habitats like those proposed by Bigalow aerospace and Sierra Nevada Corp. should be flexible enough to be OK. NASA has reserved SLS Artemis eight to place a habitat on the surface, more than likely the lunar asset will be one of these inflatable habitats.
 
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Jan 10, 2020
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After seeing what you said about moonquakes I looked it up. You are right (I did not know about the seriousness of them). Inflatable habitats like those proposed by Bigalow aerospace and Sierra Nevada Corp. should be flexible enough to be OK. NASA has reserved SLS Artemis eight to place a habitat on the surface, more than likely the lunar asset will be one of these inflatable habitats.
 
Jan 10, 2020
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Don't know much about it My understanding is the new inflatable habitats (one, the BEAM, has been attached to the ISS) have up to 15 layers of material in their walls, self repair if hit by micrometeorites, are lighter and reduce radiation exposure. Radiation will be a big issue for any lunar base, maybe any habitat will need to be buried under lunar regolith. The lunar surface will be a very harsh environment, no 100 km of atmosphere nor Van Allen belts as a barrier to the suns radiation.
 
Jan 13, 2020
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Don't know much about it My understanding is the new inflatable habitats (one, the BEAM, has been attached to the ISS) have up to 15 layers of material in their walls, self repair if hit by micrometeorites, are lighter and reduce radiation exposure. Radiation will be a big issue for any lunar base, maybe any habitat will need to be buried under lunar regolith. The lunar surface will be a very harsh environment, no 100 km of atmosphere nor Van Allen belts as a barrier to the suns radiation.
While the walls, roof, and floor may be inflatable and flexible, the people and equipment inside won't be. So I remain doubtful. But I am sure that any risk I can dream up, these geniuses thought about twice before breakfast. So I will stay tuned...
 
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Feb 1, 2020
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Sustainable Self-Reliant on the Moon would be difficult. There is literally no data on long term effects of low gravity on humans. . .
Also, though there are claims of water ice being found in polar craters, IMO that seems unlikely, or rare.

I am unaware of any hard science on either of those.
There have been some studies. The studies I have seen are mostly having to do with long term bed rest.
The results are mostly consistent with the effects of micro gravity. Loss of muscle tone, loss of calcium from bones, deterioration in the cardiovascular system, that sort of thing.
Recovery is also largely the same. Physical Therapy and some nutritional supplements are recommended. Some drugs have also been tried with varying levels of success.
I suspect that longer term we will find that the total effects vary more or less linearly with gravity and therefore effort. I also suspect that age will be a major factor in the amount of time recovery requires.
As for long term colonies on the Moon, the Moon hasn't enough water or nitrogen for true independence from the Earth. It can be economically free of Earth, but will always need imports from either Earth or from further out in space.
The Moon is a great place for factories, mines and some habitats, but it will never support an independent ecology. So yes, colonies on the moon and in high Earth Orbit, but no, they will not be truly independent of Earth, at least not until after they can begin to import gasses from Jupiter or further out.
Of course the same can be said of Singapore or Hong Kong. Both are though quite viable as cities.
 
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