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Quote of the day

'By far the greatest danger of Artificial Intelligence is that people conclude too early that they understand it'

 

Eliezer Yudkowsky

Hovering moon base may be on NASAs horizon

RATE THIS! +6
Posted in Science on 16th Nov, 2012 05:47 PM by AlexMuller

There, the combined gravity of Earth and the moon would tug on a spacecraft with exactly the force needed for it to hover near the moon without spending fuel. This might assist human missions to an asteroid or to Mars — both on the list of NASA goals.

 

Asked about the spaceport, NASA officials would only say the agency is working towards sending a capsule to loop around the moon in 2017 and a manned mission to lunar orbit in 2021.

 

An EML-2 spaceport could also allow astronauts on the base to explore the moon using robots controlled in real time. The three-second delay for radio signals to travel round-trip between Earth and the moon makes directly controlling a lunar rover from our home planet impractical. “It’s as if you were driving drunk,” says Lester. But EML-2 is close enough to the moon to erase that obstacle.

 

Last week NASA completed a test of such technology when an astronaut on the International Space Station drove a toy rover on Earth via the agency’s interplanetary internet.

 

Similar strategies could be used on Mars, as either a prelude to or a substitute for landing humans on the surface. Having a telepresence in space could also take human minds to places where our bodies can’t go.



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