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ROBOT PIoNEERS TO MINE THE MOON
Just as early Polynesians set sail to distant islands, humanity is about to embark on a commercial space odyssey that takes us to the Moon and beyond. So said Dr. Bob Richards in a recent interview at Singularity University at the NASA Ames Research Park in Mountain View, California.
“The Moon is Earth’s island on the horizon,” Richards said, “and we will learn to live off the land, find resources, and set up a trade and a navigation infrastructure. Our new Earth-Moon highway will be the testing ground.” When we get to our new island, we may find some lunar resources not available on Earth. We can set up trade and technical infrastructures and the “sailways,” or navigation systems needed to reach them. Some people will eventually want to live on the Moon. Earth and Moon will become convenient testing grounds for interplanetary systems exploration. The resources and the wealth of the Moon, and beyond, will be available to Earth.