OTHER MOON'S US MISSIONS
MOON EXPRESS - EXPANDING THE EARTH'S ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL SPHERE TO THE MOON
At the Lunar Exploration Analysis Group (LEAG) Annual Meeting in 2017, Moon Express presented its Fabulous project about the MOON.
MX-1 Scout Class Explorer. Credit: Moon Express
THE "EVOLUTION" OF UNITED LAUNCH ALLIANCE (ULA)
The New VULCAN
The development of the Vulcan booster, the Advanced Cryogenic Evolved Stage (ACES), and the SMART Re-use concept enhances the current capabilities towards a single launch system. With the next generation in avionics and the advancements in Guidance, Navigation & Control (GN&C) systems, ULA has a new and more capable concept of launch service.
ASTROBOTIC WILL REVOLUTIONIZE THE MOON
Astrobotic is contracting payloads to Trans-Lunar Insertion (TLI), Lunar Orbit, and Surface on the Moon at Lacus Mortis for its First Mission .
The Peregrime Lander
Astrobotic selects ULA to launch its Peregrine Lander in 2019 for lunar mission. The Lander will fly 35 kg of customer payloads on its first mission, with the option to upgrade to 265 kg on future missions.
ROSCOMOS GIVES OK TOLUNA-25
The new Russian Lunar Program will begin with the Luna-25 (or Luna-Glob-Lander) mission, in 2018.
Luna-25. Credit: Sputnik News
The Russian Luna-Glob mission, currently scheduled for launch in the mid-2020s, will study the physical conditions and composition of the regolith near the lunar south pole, as well as test new soft-landing technologies.
SHACKLETON ENERGY WANTS THE MOON'S RESOURCES
Private space companies are on the starting line to develop the Moon's resources. Some such as Shackleton Energy Company, have big and precise plans to do it.
We Are Going Back to the Moon to Get Water. There are billions of tons of water on the poles of the Moon. We are going to extract it, turn it into rocket fuel and create fuel stations in the Earth's orbit. Just like on Earth you won't get far on a single tank of gas. What we can do in space today is straight-jacketed by how much fuel we can bring along from the Earth's surface. Our fuel stations will change how we do business in space and jump-start a multi-trillion dollar industry," says Jim Keravala, CEO and co-founder of Shackleton Energy Company Inc.
To establish fuel stations in orbit, many problems must first be solved. It is necessary to have orbital corridors clear of space junks, efficient satellites robotic servicing, many orbital and lunar hotels and Research labs. To be more independent from the Earth, we also have to be able to manufacture materials and built structures in gravity, and mine asteroids.
For Shackleton Energy, to do this at a reasonable cost, rockets offering affordable travels to orbit and access to fuel stations, are necessary.
Until now, the biggest barrier to expand businesses off the Earth was the very high cost to go in orbit. Fortunately, in recent years, meaningful leadership and amount of capital have been invested in this part of the Rockets' industry.
People such as Elon Musk of SpaceX, Jeff Greason of XCOR, Alan Bond of Reaction Engines, Jeff Bezos of Blue Origins, Richard Branson of Virgin Galactic/The Spaceship Company or Paul Allen of Stratolauncher, all work to reduce the cost of accessibility to space.
Shackleton Energy Fuel Depot. Credit: Boeing.
Fuel limits what we can do and where we can go once in orbit.
It is like a trip in acar. When we go, we fill the tank with the maximum of gas. But, because we have to return home, we only go half way because we are limited by the availability of gas.
This is why a maximum of fuel is put inside the rockets' tanks to escape the Earth's gravity. But, when payloads are launched to lower-Earth orbit (LEO), 85% of the rocket's mass is fuel! And, if it is necessary to go far, the percentage goes up, like 90% to geostationary orbit (GEO), 95% to the Moon's surface and over 98% to the surface of Mars. Once the fuel is used up, the vehicle is useless. This is a big cost for companies.
Concepts to refuel rockets or spacecrafts in space date back to 1970s, but no commercial organization has seriously been working on this problem, except SHACKLETON ENERGY.
WHY MAKE FUEL WITH WATER FROM THE MOON?
Simply because the ice (water) can be easily split into Hydrogen and Oxygen, necessary fuel for many rockets and spacecrafts engines.
Also, the Moon is one-sixth of the Earth's size, this means we need to contend with roughly one-sixth of the Earth's gravity. Then, we need much less fuel to lift any mass off the Moon's surface. The company has calculate that, it is about 20 times cheaper to deliver water to LEO from the Moon's surface than it is to deliver it from the Earth's gravity! Shackleton Energy has turned this insight into the most comprehensive commercial space program ever created in the last 20 years.
"Bigger payloads. Space junk kept out of the way. Defunct satellites back online. Space tourism. Hotels and research labs in orbit. Mining and manufacturing in space. Space based solar power. Missions to Mars or anywhere else in our solar system. With SEC's refueling stations, all of this comes within our reach," says Jim Keravala.
EIGHT YEARS TO FULL OPERATIONS!
WeRemember that, the $100 billion Apollo program put the first man on the Moon in 7 years. Shackleton Energy wants to put a team within 8 years, and provide millions of tones of fuel and water for space's customers. That will lay the foundation for space settlement for approximately one-tenth of the cost of Apollo. First revenues are expected within 4 years of program start and full break-even within 12 years.
WHAT IS THE PROGRAM?
In the First year, the Phase One will start with the Planning where the technical and architectural designs are conceived. At this stage, the company has customers' engagements and pre-sales of propellant. Shackleton Energy will spend three years in this initial conception design.
At the Second Phase, in the Fourth year, a Robotic lunar polar prospecting mission will be sent to identify the best mining locations for the Ice and built the operational base.
Once the robotic mission is over, the company will move to Phase Three lasting two years. In this phase, Shackleton Energy will develop, construct and deploy spacecrafts' prototypes and initial human operations.
After six years, the program will be in its Final Phase. At the end of this phase, human Lunar operations and the propellant supply chain to customers will be ready for Business.
SHACKLETON ENERGY AND ZAPTEC WANT TO DEVELOP DRILLING AND POWER SOLUTIONS FOR OPERATIONS ON THE MOON
Credit: Shackleton Energy
Shackleton Energy Company (SEC) and Zaptec signed a Memorandum of Understanding to explore how technology originally developed by Zaptec for the Norwegian oil & gas sector can be repurposed to create lightweight power infrastructure to extract water from the Moon. LEARN MORE @ SHACKLETON ENERGY
SOME CHINESE MISSIONS FOR THE MOON
THE CHINA CHANG'E-4 MISSION TO THE MOON WILL BE HISTORICAL!
For the first time a country will land a spacecraft on the far side of the Moon!
In October of 1959, the Luna 3 spacecraft was launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Luna 3 was the third spacecraft to reach the Moon and the first to send back pictures of the Moon's far side.
THE CHINESE CHANG'E-5 MISSION WILL RETURN SAMPLES FROM THE MOON
Since the Apollo's missions, China will be the first to return to Earth, samples from the near side of the Moon. That will be the mission of Chang'e-5, scheduled for November 2019, near Mons Rümker in Oceanus Procellarum, a large area of lunar mare in the northwest region of the Moon.
ISPACE - EXPAND OUR PLANET & OUR FUTURE.
The Moon Valley Concept of ispace, is a world where the Earth and the Moon become one system, supported by a space-based economy. This is the main goal of the Japan’s company.
The first mission, 2019-2020, will be the first privately-led Japanese test mission to inject the lander into a lunar orbit and relay lunar data to the Earth. It’s a critical mission to test data-gathering technology and Earth–Moon transport service technology.
THE SLIM MISSION TO THE MOON
In the decade of 2020-2030, the Japanese Aerospace eXploration Agency (JAXA) will launch many missions around and on the Moon. The Smart Lander for Investigating Moon (SLIM) mission scheduled to be launched in 2020 will a precursor of full-scale lunar or planetary missions. The Small lunar-lander of about 100 kg has been approved in 2015 like an engineering demonstration of a pin-point (< 100 m precision) landing guided by a automatic obstacle avoidance system. JAXA will decide later for the official landing site.