Archive for December, 2010

38 years

Posted in history, moon on December 19, 2010 by moonmapper

38 years ago, on December 19, 1972 at 19:24:59 UTC, the Apollo 17 Command Module America splashed down into Pacific.The first human exploration of a planetary body other than Earth has ended.

The Apollo anniversaries are usually hard for space enthusiasts. It’s hard to acknowledge that in 1972 we have abandoned dreams of space colonization, and instead chosen to remain confined to Earth surface and low Earth orbit. But the aim of this blog is to look forward towards the new perspectives, not back at past glory. Recent discoveries around the poles of the Moon do rekindle hope that one day humans shall return to claim Earth’s Next Continent.

CSM America seen from LM Challenger over the Taurus-Littrow valley prior to descent. NASA frame AS17-147-22466, cropped. Click to enlarge.

Although not located in the attractive polar regions, the Taurus-Littrow valley visited by Apollo 17 remains a fascinating place. Let’s use the anniversary to explore it:

Space Manufacturing 14

Posted in moon on December 5, 2010 by moonmapper

Space Manufacturing 14: Critical Technologies for Space Settlement, was a conference held by the Space Studies Institute at NASA Ames Conference Center between October 29 and 31, 2010. Many of talks dealt with industrial use of lunar resources.

The materials are now online:

Hat tip to Bob Clark at BAUT.