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Posted by on May 28, 2012 in Science |

NASA requests that future visitors of the Moon do not touch their stuff

NASA requests that future visitors of the Moon do not touch their stuff

Many countries are planning lunar missions, including Japan, India, China and Russia even want to install a base on the moon’s surface . Also underway is the , a competition that will deliver $ 20 million to the first company that can put a robot on the surface of the moon, that loops through 500 meters and send back high definition images to Earth before 2015.

With all these plans, became nervous that any attempts to damage the things that were left on the satellite by the astronauts of the Apollo missions and by the Ranger program , where five probe crashed into the celestial body.

NASA published a set of guidelines that will safeguard seeking this material important to the history of mankind. The report was written in 2011, but now the agency decided to go public and sent to the X Prize Foundation, in charge of the contest, to give it to the contestants.

Although NASA has no way to demand that their guidelines are met (no police yet), the document outlines where are the scientific equipment and other materials left on the moon, so that other ships did not pick up aterrizarles .

The agency requested that selected landing sites are at least 2 km from the landing site of Apollo, and 500 meters from the five sites are starry Ranger probes. The idea is to prevent accidental collisions and falls are the relics moondust (highly abrasive) above.

The sites of 11 and 17 (the first and last trips to the so far) are specially demarcated for them to take extra care with them. NASA is prohibited from visiting these places and the robots are allowed to close only 75 meters from the Apollo 11 and Apollo 17 225 meters to avoid accidentally damaging one of the team robots or erase footprints were marked there.

It also asks the robots to avoid throwing dust on scientific experiments that are installed there, as laser reflectors used to measure the distance between Earth and Moon.

The contest encourages Google once they land, the robots try to approach any of the places where man-made objects, either U.S. or any of the Soviet Lunokhod . Whoever gets to take pictures of these objects will receive USD $ 4 million extra.

NASA was less strict with other Apollo sites, asking that the robots are kept between 1 and 3 meters away from the flags, tools, bags and other things that were up there.

It is unclear what state things are left on the moon 40 years ago. This is a pretty extreme environment with high temperature changes, dust, exposure to solar radiation and micrometeorites falling, which could damage the objects.

Many people – not just those who weave conspiracy theories – wants to take a picture of how the artifacts are now, after being exposed to these elements for so long. Could you provide data to build structures to survive on the moon, as bases or mining operations.

Link: Keep Out: NASA moon ASKs future visitors to Respect STI stuff (Wired)

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