Monday, February 13, 2012

The Lunar Terminator

At first glance, I supposed people think I just put Schwarzenegger on the moon, but no. The Lunar Terminator is the boundary between the illuminated and un-illuminated hemispheres of our satellite, and I've increasingly found this to separate the Earthers from the Mooners, LOL...

Are you illuminated? Do you know why the moon so is important to science, and to the ultimate chain of events that will get humanity to Mars?

Moon Slideshow
Could you say you knew everything about America
if you merely landed in these spots for a few days?

The moon is back in the news again in a big way, and while I don't think Newt Gingrich is realistic in his assessments of technological feasibility, I remain ever hopeful that people will embrace the concepts surrounding why our lunar body is so very crucial to the next phase of human exploration.

I just doubt we'll raise the money for it unless there's a Reality TV show to be had during moon base construction.

This magnificent slide show, written by Nick Skytland and Wayne Hale, displays quite powerfully the hows and the whys, as well as the beauty of the journey and what it will mean for our species.

Why NASA Is Returning To The Moon
Click to run Moon Exploration slideshow

It's a shame we don't have 60+ moons to play with, like Jupiter... but I still think we are lucky to have such a potentially useful natural satellite. Imagine if our moon was vaporous and impossible to land upon(?) Where else might we build a Mars-worthy rocket, or so easily learn to live and work in low gravity for the purpose of long-term exploration?

SpaceRef featured a recent article by NexGen's president (a former NASA advisor), stating some fundamental truths about possible moon missions, but perhaps missing the point in recent news by moaning about how Newt is ridiculed for his moon base pitch.

Space Ref Moon Opinion
No one ridicules the mission, we merely question Newt Gingrich's clear and obvious pandering. He isn't selling moon missions to the general public or at every stop on his tour -- he brought it up to one audience in Florida, and this hardly bespeaks a commitment to Space.

As my blog buddy Childejake pointed out, Gingrich did nothing whatsoever for the Mars Society in 1994 after being elected Speaker of the House, despite courting their chief, Dr. Robert Zubrin, for a detailed commercial approach to Mars exploration. Why should we believe him this time?

We illuminate the mission, but remain unilluminated by the men who keep promising to get us there, only to rip the rug out from under us because they don't understand the science.

What side are you on?