Moon caves may offer the opportunity to live on the moon at a lower price and sooner than researchers first believed possible. The caves, discovered on our moon in 2010, were probably formed approximately 3.1 billion years ago by lava. As the lava cooled, the tunnels were formed by the large rivers of molten lava that ran through them.
Researchers believe that the caves will offer protection from the moon’s harsh environment. They believe that many of the caves have 40 foot thick walls. These thick walls offer a stable -4 degree Fahrenheit environment. The most promising cave is more than one mile long and 393 feet wide.
The caves appear to have very small openings making them easy to block from dust storms and radiation. One of the major obstacles that have existed in colonizing the moon is the amount of housing material that would have to be hauled. By using the caves, those living on the moon would have protection from storms on the moon and protection from space radiation. Until the caves were discovered, the amount of housing materials needed made living on the moon impractical. due to the cost of hauling materials.
The Russians are well on their way to making living on the moon a reality however. They are currently constructing a new space station scheduled to be completed by 2018. The new facility, known as Vostochny Cosmodrome, is being designed to be a complete city of 35,000 people. The Russians are also designing a new space craft. The Angara rocket will hold six occupants when fully developed. Its first test launch will occur in 2013.
If given the opportunity, would you live on the moon?
- Earth Has Scores of Mini-Moons, Models Predict (news.nationalgeographic.com)
- Earth Has Just One Moon, Right? Think Again (npr.org)
- Russia Plans Moon Base, Mars Network by 2030 (wired.com)
- The Moon’s Giant-Collision Theory Proven Incorrect (techzwn.com)