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Will Lunar Hole Become First Settlement on the Moon?

An international team of scientists has discovered an enormous hole that may well become the base for a moon colony. The lunar “lava tube” is not a new find, but the lava sheet that protects it and appears not to be prone to collapse, makes it different from all the others.

This shield protects holes from meteorites and harsh temperatures. According to findings published in a journal of the American Geophysical Union, the vertical hole, which was discovered in the volcanic Marius Hills region on the moon’s near side is estimated to be more than 260 feet deep.

According to Junichi Haruyama, a senior researcher with the Japanese Space agency, JAXA:

Lunar lava tubes are a potentially important location for a future lunar base, whether for local exploration and development, or as an outpost to serve exploration beyond the Moon… Any intact lava tube could serve as a shelter from the severe environment of the lunar surface, with its meteorite impacts, high-energy ultra-violet radiation and energetic particles, and extreme diurnal temperature.

A Japanese moon orbiter appropriately named SELENE after the goddess of the moon discovered this particular lunar lava tube via high-resolution images. Although these findings were published last November, they have only come into public light in the last few days.

NASA is developing a Constellation Program whose goal is to establish a return to the moon by 2020 and a temporary colony by 2025. Funding for this project is still up in the air and many questions concerning the best form of habitat structure remain to be answered before these plans can be realized.

Using the natural cavern systems provided by the ancient lava tubes will have many benefits, one of the most important of which is minimal construction. Many advocates for this plan fear there are too many risks associated with above surface structures. Lava tubes can be interconnected, allowing sizeable settlements and they can also be easily sealed, which allows for pressurized habitats. Lunar colonists will also be sufficiently protected from micrometeorites and solar radiation.

In the meantime, are you up for a round of lunar-hole golf?

Leave a Comment

  1. guest says:

    Obama just cancelled the Constellation program. Do your research.

  2. josh says:

    Won’t be the fist base/settlement on the moon. Theres already structures and bases there. I am sure John Lear can speculate alot more on this. Nasa knows way more than they tell the public.

  3. Don says:

    Am I the only one that thinks this is essentially a human ant colony on the moon?

  4. Ah, haven’t you considered the possibility that these “Moon-holes”, as I like to call them lead to the realm of the “Moon People”, who were kind enough to bring this hollowed out spacecraft to Earths orbit millions of years ago to provide a target for mean space rocks to hit, thus preserving humanity?

    What would the “Clangers” – or indigenous Moon People think of this? They did broadcast messages outlining their concern to the BBC in the early 1970’s!

    My God… what have we become as a species…?

  5. foobar says:

    The constellation program was already canceled.

  6. zsingerb says:

    Sorry but : Last month, Obama killed NASA's Constellation program, which would have created a shuttle successor to ferry astronauts to the space station and, ultimately, to the moon. Instead, Obama has directed NASA to turn to commercial companies for getting astronauts into orbit and, instead, focus its own efforts on deep-space exploration.

  7. ryan says:

    Well ill put my money on commercial space exploration vs nasa bureaucracy any day. For many good reasons. Now we need real government grants to focus research into how we benefit from lunar settlement. Again, many reasons: mining, tourism, research, exploration, astronomy, etc.

  8. james says:

    So, they say this large and long tube is a lave tube? Lets break this down and think about this for just one minute…if there is a lave tube on the moon then that would mean that there either is or was volcanic activity on the lunar surface at some point in time…show me ONE volcano on the lunar surface. Ha, got you NASA (Never A Straight Answer), there are no volcano's on the surface of the moon. So since there are no volcano's on the surface of the moon then how could a "lava tube" be formed? Thats simple….a lava tub could not have formed. Now, since it is clear that there are NO volcano's on the surface of the moon then this is clearly NOT a lave tube. Why wont our government just come clean and let the world know that there is a alien mining operation on the back side of the moon, (you know, the side we never see). When astronauts first went there the code name for alien life was "santa clause". When the astronauts went around the back side of the moon they made it very clear that they had "SANTA CLAUSE". Ever ask you're self why we never went back? Ask you're self this….why hasn't NASA sent a mapping satellite to map the entire surface? Ha, ya right. I think it is about damn time our governments come clean with what they know and stop being liars.