You’ve likely heard of the “farm belt” or the “bible belt” – but how about a “solar belt”…but on the Moon! The Japanese construction company, the Shimizu Corporation, is proposing the Luna Ring – an array of solar cells that would extend like a belt along the entire equator of the Moon. Cables stretched across […]
Paul Livingstone, Senior Editor at R&D Magazine has written an interesting update on NASA, university and industry looks at space-based research. Livingstone’s article is as follows, reprinted here with permission: Space biotech: growing industry or space shot? The question began to be posed more than two years ago: can biotech companies make money in space? For […]
From Universe Today
The debate on why humans should or should not return to the Moon has been ongoing for years. Two weeks ago, I had the opportunity to hear astronaut Ron Garan speak eloquently on a subject he is passionate about, water sustainability on planet Earth. Subsequently, I read an essay Garan wrote about the importance of returning to the Moon. Although Garan originally wrote this essay before the cancellation of the Constellation program was announced, he has amended his thoughts to reflect the likelihood that the US won’t be returning to the Moon anytime soon. With Garan’s permission, we are re-publishing his essay in its entirety.
The Importance of Returning to the Moon
(The 8th Continent)
By Ron Garan
On May 10th, 1869, a golden spike joined two railways at Promontory Point, Utah, and the first transcontinental railroad was completed. On January 14th, 2004, a new vision for our Nation’s space exploration program was announced that committed the United States to a long-term human program to explore the solar system starting with a return to the moon. On February 1st 2010, those plans to return to the moon were put on hold. Although our Nation has decided to postpone a return to the moon it is still important to acknowledge the moon’s relevance to life on Earth.
There is no doubt that the railroad changed the world. It opened up frontiers to discovery, settlement, and commerce. The railroad was the backbone for the industrial revolution that provided the largest increase in life expectancy and improvement in quality of life in history. Just as the industrial revolution brought about unprecedented improvements in quality of life so can a new age of space exploration and development, but this time with a positive impact on the environment. To begin a period of sustainable space exploration, both the public and private sectors of our Nation must seize the opportunity and continue on a path to the moon.