Jeff Bezos announced plans to conquer the moon
Two hours ago, in a crowded audience a couple of blocks from the White House, the head of Amazon spoke to reporters, officials, company executives, and a group of enthusiastic schoolchildren to tell the details of his plan to bring people back to the moon by 2024. Bezos wants to conquer the surface of the satellite - and create all the conditions so that we can stay on it. A year ago, he already announced plans for the colonization of the Moon, now - he has rockets, he has a landing module, he has a clear date, and everything finally goes into the active phase.
A signal to raise a curtain on stage hiding the Blue Moon module
“This is a small step for man, and a huge leap for mankind,” the head of Amazon reminded everyone of Armstrong’s words when he appeared on the scene. Then he asked a simple question: if the resources on Earth are depleted, what will happen to us in the future? Where will tens of billions of people live (and can they even survive)?
The only way to the future, according to Bezos, is to continue space exploration. We have already learned how to send shuttles, send people into orbit, put probes on other planets and even on asteroids. Now the only obstacle to reaching the next level is infrastructure. And Amazon founder knows best about this. He wants to create a logistics system that will reduce the cost of transporting goods (and people) to our satellite and to other planets by an order of magnitude.
The task of my generation is to create infrastructure. We will build a road to space.
The billionaire announced plans for Blue Origin to send people into space on his New Shepard rocket this year. And in 2024 - to land on the moon. A landing capsule called Blue Moon was presented. According to Jeff Bezos, she can deliver up to 6.5 tons of cargo to the moon at a time.
With this landing module, says the creator of Amazon, it will be possible to “finally reach the resource-rich lunar surface” (by the way, who knows whether it is really rich there, or is it Bezos so trying to attract governments and investors? It seems that there are no valuable resources on the surface , except possibly fallen asteroids. Silicon, oxygen, iron, calcium, aluminum. Maybe he means the resources for building the following lunar bases?).
Loads will be mounted on top of the Blue Moon, on this platform, and then descended by a lift
The richest man in the world will carry out the Moon exploration project in collaboration with NASA. His shuttle is not intended for the delivery of people, but he will transport everything else - all the materials necessary in huge quantities. US Vice President Mike Pence recently announced the need to build an orbital station around the moon, which will help with the delivery of Americans to the South Pole satellite by the same 2024.
Why the South Pole? It's simple: there is ice. More than 500 million tons - at the bottom of craters, where the rays of the sun never penetrate. These data were collected by the Indian probe Chandrayan-1. NASA hopes to use this ice to produce rocket fuel. Water, along with oxygen, abundantly present in the lunar soil, will allow to fuel, according to Pence, "the next generation of spacecraft that will be able to reach Mars in months, not years."
Lift and large rover (for scale). Blue Moon will be able to deliver 4 such rovers to the moon at a time
Such oxygen-powered rockets are already under construction - for example, the Momentus startup is doing this . The main problem is financing. At a briefing today, NASA announced that it was still calculating the amount that a new (permanent) lunar mission would cost. According to the most crude estimates, it is tens of billions of dollars. But for Bezos, who dreams of space , this is a completely trivial amount, even after a divorce. If the government suddenly closes plans for the moon, it will be able to sponsor the mission on its own without any problems.
So far, NASA plans relate to manned landings in the mid-2020s, the construction of a permanent station and the construction of a space road for landing on Mars in the 2030s. This is where Bezos and Blue Origin should help them. The New Glenn rocket they are developing will have to carry 45 tons of cargo into Earth orbit, from where the lunar expedition will launch . Bezos rockets will be helped by SpaceX with its Falcon Heavy and the new Starship, which is due to be launched in 2020 and will have up to 100 tons of payload.
In parallel, Bezos wants to inspire the next generation. To do this, he announced the creation of the " Club of the Future ", a new organization that helps children become a little closer to space. Their first project is that any child who writes or draws about life in space can send a postcard to Blue Origin. The first 10,000 postcards received before July 20 will fly to New Shepard, and upon return, they will be sent to their owners (with the stamp “Fly in space!”).