|Paired concept of nomadic extended human sortie Constellation-attendant architecture as envisioned by NASA in 2009 [NASA/Frassinito & Associates].|
Marc Boucher at SpaceRef has posted a "free preview from the March issue of Space Quarterly magazine," an article "only available in the U.S. edition."
Lunar bases and their location is a subject that has been discussed and argued about for decades, without any real consensus, because each interest group is driven to a different area. Some think little of the Moon and see it as nothing more than a distraction on the way to Mars. The thesis of this article is that not only is the Moon vitally important for developing a sustainable infrastructure to support the eventual settlement of Mars, it is vitally important for the overall future of mankind and for the economic development of the solar system. It is far beyond time for our community to make this intellectual commitment and then develop our thoughts and plans from there. In order for mankind to prosper on the Earth in the long term, the resources of our solar system, beginning at the Moon, are crucial, and it is time to quit apologizing for this stance. To provide structure three general regions of interest will be discussed, based upon utility, cost, and long-term viability.
Read the extensive preview HERE.