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50 years on from Apollo 11, European students plan return to the Moon with IGLUNA

20 Jul 2019, 08:00 UTC
50 years on from Apollo 11, European students plan return to the Moon with IGLUNA

50 years on from Apollo, European students plan return to the Moon with IGLUNA

50 years ago today, Apollo 11 landed on the Moon. It was an iconic event for humanity that required the contribution of 400,000 people, including many Europeans.

With plans to return humans to the Moon in the next five years, questions remain about how we could protect astronauts serving in long-duration missions in the extreme lunar environment.

Last month, the IGLUNA ESA_Lab@ project, led by the Swiss Space Center, brought together 150 students from nine different European countries in 20 project teams, to tackle different aspects of suppporting life in a demonstrator lunar habitat.

IGLUNA. Copyright: Eva Buchs

Teams prepared throughout the 2018-2019 academic year for a field campaign from 17 June – 3 July, in which they built the habitat in a glacier cave of the Klein Matterhorn above Zermatt, Switzerland. Over two weeks the students carried out scientific experiments and tested systems for communication, power management, life support and monitoring the health of astronauts. 

Tourists and locals were invited to view the habitat and an exhibition at the Vernissage Art Gallery in Zermatt.

You can find out more about the campaign at the IGLUNA website and in this video:

Cover image copyright: Peter Balicki/IGLUNA

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