A Lunar Observatory ?
Posted 07 December 2012 - 10:52 AM
I've no idea where to post this thread but thought perhaps here a good fit?
Benefits could be many, and difficulties could be many. Would it be a reasonable thing to propose? I think it is something that promotes at least one trip there with humans, but perhaps it could be accomplished with a lander as was used for the Apollo?
Though prohibitively expensive maybe some cost could be offset by allowing amatures acces to image from there.
I'm just curious if the thought had crossed anyone else's mind, and your thoughts on the challenges and benefits.
I lack resources to do any sort of cost benefit or capacity analysis compared to say something orbital, but it sparked again when I was looking through some of my old books. I think of what we spend on earthbound and adaptive optics to compensate for our atm... things have certainly come a long way.
Posted 07 December 2012 - 11:13 AM
I don't think we will have the technology, nor the resolve to develop it, anytime soon though.
Pesse (We had a bar on the moon awhile back but it closed. Most patrons complained it lacked atmosphere...) Mist
Posted 07 December 2012 - 11:16 AM
Posted 07 December 2012 - 11:59 AM
I used to wonder about that until Hubble was put in orbit. To me Hubble accomplishes the same mission/need and much more feasible to do.
Pesse (yes, radio astronomy would be the reason to use the moon. Since the moon itself can block out 'The Kardassian Sisters' telecasts.....) Mist
Posted 07 December 2012 - 01:16 PM
But the rationale for doing science on the moon has everything to do with an irrational project, IMO: sending men instead of robots, on the moon, again.
To do, ehhh... 'things' as politicians from the early 2000's would have said.
Well, initially I thought that a manned lunar mission will most likely kill a Martian project because, when you consider the socio-economy-demography and politics of the US and the world circa 2060 ...there is a serious possibility that the US and the world will neither have the financial capability, nor the will, to do a Mars mission. My bet is that we might be engulfed in more serious problems that will make people laugh when they hear about a Man on Mars mission. Hopefully i'll be wrong.
BUT, if a manned mission to the Moon must be set, instead of doing 'stuff', it might be good to keep the astronauts busy doing usefull things.
1)Astromomy: set up interferometers in visible, radio...at least an Interferometer, please!
2)Digging and searching the far side and the craters of the poles for organic or fossil remants of early prebiotic earth that were brought in impactors. This could nothing less than answers the problem of the origin of life on Earth, big deal IMO.
3) extracting Helium 3
4) and NO, NOT using the moon as a lauching base, because the 'gravity is lower' there, it still doesn't make sense.
Posted 23 December 2012 - 09:15 PM
I still like the idea. Unless the adaptive optics of the Earth based giant telescopes can be improved. Their images still lag the detail shown by Hubble pictures with only 8 ft of telescope diameter.
Posted 24 December 2012 - 06:14 AM
The Moon isn't the right place for a telescope as the Moondust poses many problems. There have been projects for a radio telescope and an interferometer on the always farside ( sometimes called the backside ) of the Moon: