Lunar news 4-21-2020


The race to the moon is heating up. I found this BRILLIANT proposal for building a telescope in a lunar crater . Its so simple, Iā€™m amazed they waited this long. You can find the official NASA link here, and a relevant SlashDot discussion here. Drop a package with some rovers, have them drive out and pull the antenna mesh out and anchor themselves. On the dark side of the moon, shielded from earth radio noise. Read the article for details, but it really is..brilliantly simple. (In terms of mission)

Also this is in the news, ā€œTrump signs executive order to support moon mining, tap asteroid resourcesā€ Headline says it all. The OSIRIS-REx (wiki) spacecraft will be the first to pave the way for research on mining asteroids by a sampling mission. (Official NASA link here)

This got me thinking about rover design, for lunar mining. Firstly, It seems as though SpaceX will be the cargo supplier to the the Lunar Gateway space station. The VIPER rover (wiki) which is a reboot of the Resource Prospector (wiki) should be delivered (by SpaceX presumably) to the moon sometime in 2023. All these rovers are so much fun! NASA is even considering allowing tag along packages, if you can fit it into a box the size of a bar of soap. You can do a LOT with an electronic package the size that small. Think 1/16 scale RC car that unfolds via origami. NASA press release here, additional article by Engadget.

Speaking of moons, Popular Mechanics had this EXCELLENT article ranking the best moons of moons in our solar system! Its worth the read. Also worth the watch, is this YouTube video of the Apollo 11 landing profile. Give it a like, someone put a lot of love into that video.