- NASA published a report outlining ambitious plans pertaining to a space colony.
- Another moon landing by 2024.
- NASA is also interested in further MARS exploration.
All G7 nations continue to enhance their strategies for missions to the moon and even established colonies. Many space missions and developments has been postponed due to the global coronavirus pandemic. However, strategy and development is going forward. NASA published a 13 page report outlining their Plan for Sustained Exploration and Development.
The new published report outlines the development of selenium (on the moon), which turns it into a springboard for the preparation of the future Martian expeditions.
According to the report the first landing of the NASA astronauts on the moon is scheduled for 2024. It is also expected that Deep Space Gateway Station will be fully functional by the proposed date. In the framework of this program, circumlunar space will be developed, where astronauts must construct and test the system before traveling to deep space, including to Mars. Robotic missions with descent to the lunar surface will also be tested. Astronauts from near-lunar space will be able to return home within a few days if there is a problem. It takes them much longer to get from Martian orbit, so NASA prefers to test them first at a closer distance-near the moon.
Multiple unmanned missions are planned. One of the missions is to build a permanent base at the South pole of Selene (possibly in the crater Shackleton). Experts expect that it can accommodate four people. The first crew will probably spend a week there. Gradually, the length of stay will be extended. Lunar expeditions are planned to be launched annually.
At the disposal of the astronauts will be a passenger Rover LTV, or Lunar Terrain Vehicle, which will transport researchers over short distances.
Russian scientists also proposed setting up a space colony on the moon with artificial gravity. The sensational project consists of a moon base with artificial gravitation, allowing future human residents not only to live on the Moon but even give birth without harm to their health. The moon base will contain a centrifuge, which will allow an earth-like level of gravity. The proposed quanta of mass of the centrifuge would be 1 tonne, with the overall mass in the range of 2 to 9 tonnes. The parameters allow transportation to the moon using already existing carriers. Every living module will need anti-radiation shielding.
NASA plans to build a mobile habitable platform. The platform will accommodate voyages lasting up to 45 days.
It is expected the lunar base should become a springboard for the preparation of the landing on Mars. It will not only become a springboard for the study of the celestial body itself, but also for the development of technologies that ensure maximum autonomy of the base. Thus, specialists will have to create and perfect methods for obtaining water, oxygen and fuel from local resources. In addition, astronauts will have the opportunity to test advanced robotics.
The actions of the “lunar” crews will be coordinated from the Gateway Orbital Station. It will also be a backup shelter for them if something goes wrong on the surface of Selene.
Astronauts will use the same station to simulate a flight to Mars. It is planned that four people will spend several months on board, simulating the path to the red planet.
NASA has ambitions to have more projects on MARS.
The space race, and the colonizing of space, is on.