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December 23-29, 2013 / Vol 32, No 51 / Hawai`i Island, USA

20 Dec 2013, 21:43 UTC
December 23-29, 2013 / Vol 32, No 51 / Hawai`i Island, USA
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

Solar System Human Missions for the 21st Century – Part 1

Humanity in this century could strive to explore and develop capability throughout the Solar System. Earth-Moon Cislunar baseline infrastructure may be the foundation for explorations of Free Space, Near-Earth-Objects, Mars, main Asteroid Belt, outer Solar System, and Galaxy Stars beyond. The recent resumption of activities on the lunar surface by China’s Chang’e-3 lander and Yutu rover could mark the beginning of permanent operations on the Moon with many national and independent enterprises including Moon Express, Golden Spike, Shackleton Energy and others on the way. Human Moon missions are expected about 2020. Another key waypoint for inner Solar System exploration is being pursued by national space agencies and projects such as Mars One and Inspiration Mars. While hundreds of times farther away than the Moon and therefore more difficult, costly to travel to, the Red Planet may offer unique opportunities and somewhat more Earth-like conditions, environment and geology. The asteroid belt and dwarf planet Ceres, currently being studied by NASA’s Dawn spacecraft, hold vast resource potential and are integral to our understanding and development of the inner Solar System in the next 5-50 years. Proposed missions would study and utilize ...

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