Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving on the Moon: A Lunar Feast

Paul D. Spudis
The Once and Future Moon
Smithsonian Air & Space

We often hear the Moon described as a lifeless desert, a barren rock in space where nothing can survive. Although the Moon is certainly different from the Earth, it is hardly barren. From the 1970’s through the 1990’s (largely before we knew about the presence of water and other volatiles in the lunar polar regions) the late, lunar scientist Dr. Larry Haskin set forth some basic facts about the chemical composition of the Moon. Larry was a chemist by training and his view was that the Moon has all that we need – just not in the form in which we need it.

Larry wrote a very interesting paper for the 1988 Second Symposium on Lunar Bases. Over the years, I heard him give several different versions of this talk. Initially, he called it “Wine and Cheese from the Lunar Desert” but after deciding that he didn’t want to drive away or offend any teetotalers in his audience, he changed it, first to “Cola and Cheese” and then “Water and Cheese from the Lunar Desert.” Although the liquid varied, the cheese stayed.

Read the Post HERE.

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