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Lunar Space Station

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posted on Aug, 16 2007 @ 01:32 PM
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As Ares and Orion prepare to take us to the moon, I was pondering how the ISS has acted as a life boat for the Shuttle. If we are to establish a permanent base on the moon, I think that a lunar space station would be wise and prudent. If an Apollo 13 style disaster were to happen, the crew could dock with the station and jettison the crippled craft to await a rescue craft. A lander could be docked to the station to be used if another was unable to return due to technical problems. Also, such a station could mount telescopes to be used when it was traveling on the far side of the moon to take images of the moon's surface or for radio astronomy. Unlike the current ISS, off the shelf technology could be used to simplify the design and save money and time. An Ares V could easily boost a Nautilus space module into lunar orbit. Since Bigelow Aerospace is already developing the module with its own resources and has flown hardware in space, it would be relatively safe and cheap for NASA to order a module. Also, Bigelow is developing a lunar cruiser for Russian Soyuz, so that design could easily be modified for Project Constellation.




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