Owning a home in space could be the next big thing, come 2020.
For space scientists congregating at Hyderabad, it looks like we will have a colony up there soon. Space experts are mulling road maps on infrastructure comprising a communication network, including internet, a greenhouse, fuel production plants, and aspects of ethics and governance for human settlements on Moon, Mars and beyond.
A settlement of a dozen people by 2020 and a village of 100 by 2030 on the Moon is a possibility, says Prof Bernard Foing, executive director of the International Lunar Exploration Working Group, and the brain behind SMART-I, the first mission of the European Space Agency to the Moon. A similar settlement on Mars is planned for 2040.
“We believe the Moon to be the ideal test bed for evaluating technologies and systems that are required for taking life beyond Earth,” he said.
Earlier, at a meet on Strategies to establish Lunar and Mars colonies, William Marshall of NASA spoke of lunar governance. He is for a ban on military bases and deployment of weapons in space and advocated against property rights over lunar land.
ISRO chairperson G Madhavan Nair said the ethical aspects ought to include use of resources on Moon and Mars for exploring the universe and a code against contamination of the new settlements.