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Location of a Lunar Base

Report Number: AFCRL 870
Author(s): John W. Salisbury and Charles F. Campen, Jr.
Corporate Author: Air Force Cambridge Research Laboratories
Date of Publication: 1961-10
Pages: 44
AD Number: AD0273816

The two major theories of lunar substructure are reviewed as pertinent to the location of a lunar base. The meteoric theory favors a moon base located in the highlands where the collapse hazard is at a minimum. Lunar probes for experimental verification of these conclusions are discussed. Surface characteristics would not particularly limit base location, but natural resources play a most important part. Mineral deposits must be large, centralized, and predictably located. It is suggested that vital water deposits may be found beneath chain craters and rilles, again suggesting a highlands location. The per capita, per day needs for oxygen, nitrogen, and water of lunar-based personnel are detailed; solar energy as a power source for mineral extraction is proposed. The initial location of a space vehicle terminal is limited by present propulsion systems to the western quadrant of the visible lunar face. Because of tremendous surface variations in temperature, the major lunar base complex would be underground. After detailed consideration of all the foregoing factors, a site south of the Hyginus Rille, near the Crater Agrippa, is suggested for an initial lunar base site.

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