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I just a saw a couple of hours ago a program on Discovery channel about 'mining' the Moon for the He3 isotopes that accumulated there in the upper layer from the solar wind. I think the program will probably be repeated at least a couple more times -- there were some very interesting things there.
There was one note close to the end worth quoting: "if there were gold bars stacked on the Moon's surface, it wouldn't make sense to bring them to Earth because of the high cost of transportation, but it would make sense to extract the He3 and bring it back to Earth". (wording may not be exact)
those pictures are not taken from on the moon. now if they would just tell the truth all would be fine. either they lost/broke the moon camera and had to recreate it or they never went and recreated it? either way tell the story
I saw the same documentary, he3 was estimated there to be worth 1 billion dollars/lb considering the energy produced. On earth it occurs only in decommissioned nukes! theres a reason to dismantle nukes for ya! now it makes sense why Bush wants to built a base there! The question is if there is an effect on the earth if we mess with the moon and would that be better than energy sources we already have/are developing.
After looking at wikipedia and a few other sources, it seems to me the producers of that documentary may have been a bit too optimistic about He3, but it is difficult to judge a complex system like that. BTW, He3 does occur naturally in Earth, but the concentration is usually so low that production from most sources is inpractical.
There would be no effect on earth, and since the Moon is a barren body with no environmental worries, so in some respects that would make things simpler. Of course, the lack of breathable atmosphere and the distance more than makes up for the above. I
n any case, there should be no surprise that others (i.e. russians, chinese) are eyeing the Moon, too.
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