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Daily Archives: March 21, 2020
Posted: March 21, 2020 at 6:48 am
What if we arrested fewer people in the first place, that way we don't have to panic about exposing people behind bars (and the guards who take care of then) to the coronavirus? It's a shift we're beginning to see in some municipalities.
Reason's Zuri Davis has reported on the mechanisms some courts and jails have been using to release prisoners early, particularly those who are being jailed for low-level crimes, in order to stop or reduce the spread of disease among people in jail.
But many cities are also reconsidering whether the police actually need to arrest people for certain minor crimes and bring them to jail for processing in the first place. This is yet another temporary shift in behavior that might be worth considering even when the coronavirus is not such an omnipresent threat.
In Philadelphia, Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw has set forth new guidelines to stop police officers from arresting people accused of a host of nonviolent misdemeanor crimes. Instead, they'll briefly detain the suspect to confirm identity and fill out arrest warrant paperwork, then release the suspect. The arrest warrant will be served at a later time when the coronavirus risk has faded.
The list of crimes that will no longer lead to people being processed into jail includes prostitution and all narcotics crimes. (We should hope this prompts the city to realize they should have never thrown people in jail for these crimes in the first place.) The list also includes vandalism, several different types of thefts, burglary, and even car theft. So while these aren't violent crimes, they also aren't victimless crimes. This doesn't mean those people won't be held accountable by the justice system eventually and be ordered to make amends to their victims, by they're not going to be tossed in jail for now. Vehicle impoundments are also being suspended.
After making the announcement Tuesday, Outlaw clarified today that an officer "still has the authority to utilize discretion, and take an offender into physical custody for immediate processing, if the officer and supervisor believe the individual poses a threat to public safety."
Arresting fewer people who aren't dangerous is a great way to keep jail populations down and reduce chances for the coronavirus to spread. But it's honestly something that we should have started doing earlier, unprompted by pandemic, because we have too many people in jail who don't really need to be there, and because jail time disrupts many lives in unnecessary ways.
When New Jersey reformed its bail system so that money bail was no longer ordered and implemented a stronger evaluation system to try to release more people who had been arrested but not yet convicted, it also made some significant policing changes to reduce the number of people who were being arrested in the first place to try to reduce the stress on the system. They made permanent changes similar to what Philadelphia is experimenting with. For greater numbers of low-level misdemeanors, rather than arresting suspects, they were cited and released and ordered to report to court in the future.
New Jersey's experiments in criminal justice reform have not led to an increase in crime in the Garden State, even as the police saw a 17 percentage point shift across four years in favor of giving a suspect a summons for certain crimes instead of arresting him or her. So as police arrest fewer and fewer people, it's an opportunity for them to consider whether these arrests were ever actually serving public safety in the first place.
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EDITORIAL: Polis earns trust with facts, honesty, and others should emulate that – Sentinel Colorado
Posted: at 6:48 am
As Colorado lurches into the unknown, residents here can all be reassured in knowing our state government, and most of the local governments and agencies, are clearly in expert and trusted hands.
Thats not the case with the federal government.
Already reeling from the devastating health and economic disaster of the new coronavirus crisis, as a nation we suffer needlessly under White House leaders lacking competence and integrity.
For years, Trump was warned that his lying and deception would render him useless in crisis. It has done just that. Americans dont know what to believe from a president and an administration that cant even coordinate their mendacity and nonsense.
To this day, it is unclear how many COVID-19 tests are available, how many will become available and how the public can gain access to them.
This, however, is not the time to try Trump again for impeachable offenses. Tragically, Americans have been dealt the hand we now must play in a race against time.
Completely opposite of that, Gov. Jared Polis has deservedly become the most trusted and dependable government official in the state. His honesty and intelligence inspires hope and reassurance, even as Colorado makes tragic but critically necessary decisions.
Those decisions, effectively closing down almost all public venues such as restaurants, ski areas and retailers, doom the livelihood of hundreds of thousands of Coloradans. But not doing it would only postpone the inevitable and compound the longterm financial loss.
The decision jeopardizes a wide range of people and industries, and it even jeopardizes this newspaper.
While continuing to do whatever is necessary to stem the spread of this virus, state and local government officials must do more.
Immediately, state and local officials must intervene in jails and prisons, releasing all prisoners who are held for victimless crimes. Housing people in ill-equipped jails and prisons creates a potential death sentence. In addition, a plague inside a single jail or prison could overwhelm the states hospital systems.
State and city leaders must immediately work to make cash rapidly available to small businesses to ensure payrolls can be met. Through loans or other assistance, small-business employers must be able to continue to provide needed work, and provide for their own families.
Similarly, as meager savings accounts dry up, the nation must offer any struggling American food stamps, using temporary, realistic requirements. Such a system would not only ensure food security for millions who are absolutely going to need it, it will help stabilize the grocery industry, which will be similarly shaken when current hoarding and cash runs out.
While the state has increased money spent on unemployment insurance benefits, the process must immediately be shortened. Huge numbers of unemployed need assistance now.
Nationally, lenders must be able to hit the pause button on certain loans and mortgages, even if it means accruing additional interest. Forcing millions of businesses into bankruptcy over relatively short-term cash crises would be catastrophic for decades. No doubt banks, again, will be the recipients of massive cash infusions. That cash must benefit bank customers, not bank stockholders.
Polis has been welcomingly honest with what hes doing and what the effects could be. Its time now for Polis to share future scenarios based on numbers of infection and illness. If urban areas will be subject to practices such as shelter in place, what do state officials think would trigger that. The public at this point needs to know what events might trigger which scenarios going forward.
Clearly, the press for less public contact will increase. Its not hard to envision that this crisis will continue and evolve for weeks and possibly months. And theres no doubt that the health crisis will eventually subside and end. But Colorado needs to ensure theres no unintended crises created. One of those looming problems is public education.
While colleges have been able to patch together at least an on-line substitute for education, public schools have not. Within days, local and state school officials need a plan on helping students keep on track for what could be months of lost learning time. Thousands of Aurora students dont have computers or even internet access. With libraries and public facilities shuttered, there must be a way to get learning to students.
And the government alone wont solve this large of a crisis. People and businesses alike must do what they can for each other, without being forced by laws or regulations. Like Polis, business leaders and individuals must consider the greater good, not the moments fear when deciding what to do next.
The Punisher: 5 Most Heroic Things He’s Ever Done ( & 5 Most Villainous) – CBR – Comic Book Resources
Posted: at 6:48 am
Although he is lauded today as one of Marvel's best superheroes, Frank Castle, also known as the Punisher, was never meant to be a hero. In many ways, he never has truly been a hero. Rather, the Punisher was a selfish vigilante that put many in harm's way just so he could continue his crusade.
During this crusade of his, Frank Castle has done many good things. He has also done many horrible, villainous things as well. Here are the five most heroic things the Punisher has ever done and the five most villainous.
Frank wasn't the only man hoping to eradicate violent criminals once and for all. A vigilante group known as The Trust hoped to fulfill the Punisher's legacy and eliminate all violent crime in one fell swoop.
Unlike the Punisher, The Trust was much less careful in its war on crime. Uncaring about civilian casualties, The Trust simply considered them to be a necessary sacrifice. Frank decided to destroy this organization, proving there are some lines that he would not cross.
Perhaps the hero that Punisher comes into conflict with more than any other is the Devil of Hell's Kitchen himself, Daredevil. On one occasion, Frank got the upper hand and tied up DD on a rooftop.
After Daredevil awoke, Punisher brought out a criminal and offered DD a sadistic choice: eitherkill the Punisher with a gun, or he would in fact murder the criminal. Daredevil pointed the gun at Punisher and pulled the trigger. Nothing happened. The Punisher had just been toying with DD and went on to murder the criminal anyway.
While undercoverat a school, Frank was investigating some drug dealers that were reportedly selling to children in the area. As he got to know the kids better, he met a young man named Jason Hunt.
Related:10 Marvel Villains Who Survived More Than One Fight With The Punisher
Hunt's parents had been killed in much the same way that Frank Castle's family was. Seeing himself in the young man, Punisher did everything he could to help ensure that Jason would not turn out as he did.
Known for being quite over the top when it comes to doling out justice, Punisher took it to a whole new level with this stunt. Mad with rage, Frank began targeting civilians who were committing victimless, petty crimes such as speeding.
It was later revealed that Frank had been drugged, which had removed all of his judgment and inhibitions. Still, it's not too far of a stretch to suggest the Punisher might start using his method to start dealing with lesser crimes.
During Marvel Comics' Civil War event, Spider-Man had decided to switch sides about half-way through and join the resistance. The pro-registration side, backed by the government, sent a bunch of super-criminals they were using as footsoldiers after Spidey. Getting the better of him, these supervillains were about to murder Spider-Man in cold blood when Frank Castle showed up.
Punisher killed both villains and rushed Spider-Man to the resistance base. If not for the Punisher's quick, decisive action, Peter Parker would no doubt have died at the hands of a couple of pro-registration thugs. If that had happened, the Civil War may have never ended.
Tracking down a drug ring in D.C., the Punisher received intel that none other than Captain America himself was involved in the illegal dealings. Without much hesitation, Frank shot Cap straight through the abdomen with a sniper bullet.
Related:Punisher: 5 DC Villains Who He Would Defeat (& 5 He Would Lose To)
As it turned out, Cap had survived and faked his death so that he could further infiltrate the drug ring undercover. It still comes at quite a surprise that Punisher was so willing to murder his idol without much thought.
As of just a few years ago, Frank Castle is no longer the only Punisher. Another former Marine, Rachel Cole-Alves has also taken up the mantle after her husband was murdered by a brutal gang of criminals. During a firefight to take them down, Rachel accidentally shot and killed a police officer.
Rachel was then arrested and sentenced to death. The Avengers tracked down Castle and convinced him to come back and save Rachel. He agreed but didn't quite save her in the way they were thinking. Frank broke Rachel out of prison and helped her escape rather than fight her case in the courts.
Microchip has been the Punisher's right-hand man for decades. The duo has been through quite a lot together, and it always seemed as though they could rely on one another. Believing that Frank was getting out of hand, Microchip told Frank that was the case before his untimely demise.
Later being brought back to life, Microchip made it his mission to stop the Punisher. When the two were finally alone in a room together, Frank ruthlessly got his revenge on Microchip by slashing his former partner's throat with a knife.
The bravest men and women of the United States of America are the ones that choose to put their lives on the line to defend our freedoms. Early on in his life, Frank Castle decided to become one of those people and deployed overseas.
While there, Frank was an amazingly effective soldier that not only helped stop many terrorists abroad that may have come to the states but also saved many of his fellow soldiers. A truly heroic series of acts indeed.
An offshoot of the Nazi Party, Hydra is the evilest organization in all of Marvel lore.Having been led by multiple fascist Nazis and a whole lot of murderous supervillains, Hydra is a despicable organization that only attracts the worst sorts of people.
When an alternate timeline evil Captain America took control of America, he convinced Punisher to join the cause. Using these new Hydra resources to continue his war on crime, Punisher decided to shack up with an organization with ties to the Nazis.
Next:Thanos vs. Doom: 5 Reasons Thanos Is Marvel's Number One Supervillain (& 5 Why It's Dr. Doom)
NextWhich My Hero Academia Character Are You Based On Your Zodiac Sign?
Michael Austin is a freelance writer who graduated from Iowa State University in 2019.You can check out more of his work at:Facebook.com/michaelaustinwriterTwitter.com/mikeswriting
Posted: at 6:47 am
The colonization of the Moon is the proposed establishment of permanent human communities on the Moon. Science fiction writers and advocates of space exploration have seen settlement of the Moon as a logical step in the expansion of humanity beyond the Earth.
Permanent human habitation on a planetary body other than the Earth is one of science fiction's central themes. As technology has advanced, and concerns about the future of humanity on Earth have increased, the argument that space colonization is an achievable and worthwhile goal has gained momentum. Because of its proximity to Earth, the Moon has been seen as a prime candidate for the location of humanity's first permanently occupied extraterrestrial base.
Should attempts at colonization go ahead, economic concerns are likely to lead to settlements being created near mines and processing centers, or near the poles where a continuous source of solar energy can be harnessed. While it would be relatively easy to resupply a lunar base from Earth, in comparison to a Martian base, the Moon is likely to play a large role in the development of long-duration closed-loop life support systems. Duplicating the ecology of Earth so that wastes can be recycled is essential to any long term effort of space exploration. The wealth of knowledge gained by extracting and refining resources on the Moon would positively affect efforts to build colonies elsewhere in the Solar System.
There has been various habitat ideas to settle in the Moon. Some consider staying in the surface using inflatable modulus or the spacecraft itself. Taking in account factors like the risk of meteorites falling into the surface or the radiation from the Sun, another suggestion is to build habitats underneath the surface.
Putting aside the general questions of whether a human colony beyond the Earth is feasible or scientifically desirable in light of cost-efficiency, proponents of space colonization point out that the Moon offers both advantages and disadvantages as a site for such a colony.
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Colonization of the Moon | Space Colonization Wiki | Fandom
Posted: at 6:47 am
Everyone wants to create a moon base
News of February 14, 2019
The possibility of colonizing the Moon is studied in detail by NASA, ESA and CNSA, and also Roscosmos. Many private companies also have this goal, like Blue Origin, SpaceX, Moon Express and many other companies. Space agencies and private companies are working to bring men or freighters to the Moon as quickly as possible.
The 2020 decade should be devoted to robotic exploration. Human exploration could start in the late 2020s or early 2030s. The first and last human adventure on the surface of the Moon is now half a century old. This resulted in short stays of a few days maximum. But this time, NASA and other space agencies seem to want to go to the Moon to stay there.
Concretely, we talk about a permanent or semi-permanent base on the Moon, like an international space station but on the surface of the Moon. This is the positioning of Europe with the Moon Village project. But building a Moon base faces many challenges.
The Moon is not the most welcoming place in the solar system. We still need to find a solution to face many challenges : radiation, dust, micro-meteorites, temperatures, energy, oxygen, water, food or even isolation.
The International Space Station is preparing to tackle some of these challenges. But it will be quite different on the Moon. The remoteness of the Earth makes supply missions more expensive. On the other hand, we can find on the spot many resources which could be exploited directly by the inhabitants of a Moon base. The European Space Agency is particularly active in research related to these problems.
At best, a first Moon base will be created in the early 2030s. But that does not mean that we can not already solve some of the challenges identified. On Earth, ESA is currently creating a simulation center. Its surface will be 1000 square meters, completely covered with a material imitating the lunar regolith and a habitat called Flex Hab. The goal is to be able to test the technologies and processes that human explorers can use on the Moon.
What to study first when talking about a Moon base is the place to install it. The equatorial region is the easiest of access, moon landing and takeoff. On the visible side of the Moon, the lunar base would allow for uninterrupted communications with the Earth. Lunar nights are however very long, 14 days.
The polar regions are more and more interesting. It is more difficult to land on a pole of the Moon but there is water ice and reliefs that remain illuminated 80% or 90% of the time, which is ideal for solar panels. The South Pole region is currently the area that seems most interesting. We can imagine that installing a Moon base at the South Pole would be a good idea.
However, there are still many decisions to make : should we install the Moon base on the surface or dig deep ? We know that the Moon has many lava tubes. These are natural tunnels that provide effective protection against radiation, meteorites and extreme temperatures. But lava tubes have to be located near the interesting resources.
Perhaps it would be more simple to build the Moon base in a crater and then cover it with regolith. This solution would bring a lot of benefits. The lower levels of such a Moon base would be located under several tens of meters of material, safe from any threat. The lunar craters are so numerous that they can be found at the same time near a deposit of water ice and a peak of eternal light. Using the lunar regolith to do radiation shielding is a very simple first example of using local resources.
Thanks to this, it is not necessary to print structures in 3D or to use a complex process. A simple backhoe can do this job. It is thus possible to use light inflatable modules to build the lunar base and thus reduce the logistic footprint of the Moon base. This solution solves the problem of radiation, meteorites and provides thermal insulation. By colonizing in this way several adjacent craters, we could build a real village.
The final choice of the location of the Moon base will probably be conditioned by the discovery of a large ice-water deposit. For a Moon base, water will be the most important local resource because it is necessary to drink but also because we can extract rocket propellants by electrolysis. Electrolysis is a process that separates water into dioxygen and dihydrogen. Thanks to an electric current, this process can also be a way of storing energy during long lunar nights. Dihydrogen and oxygen can indeed be used in a fuel cell. Water becomes a way to hydrate, to power rockets and to conserve energy produced by solar panels.
The problem is that water ice is located at the bottom of craters that daylight never reaches. Extraction of water ice could be very complicated. The easiest way to do this would probably be to redirect sunlight to the bottom of these craters using mirrors. The water vapor produced would then be transported to the electrolysis cells. In any case, the extraction of water ice will be one of the most important challenges of a Moon base. It will not be easy to get industrial machinery down the steep slopes in complete darkness.
By using fuel cells, solar energy can be used in two ways. Photovoltaic panels exposed to eternal light spikes would power the Moon base with electricity and provide the energy needed to trigger the electrolysis process. The suns heat could also be used for many other applications. It could be used to extract water ice and cook the lunar regolith in solar ovens.
There is a lot of oxygen in the regolith, in the form of a metal oxide. From 900 degrees Celcius, we can break the chemical bonds that unite these molecules to capture extra oxygen and iron, aluminum or magnesium. These are useful resources for a Moon base, even though this process is much more energy intensive than the melting of water ice.
From 1100 degrees Celsius, it becomes possible to melt the lunar regolith. We can then give it the desired shape to manufacture for example bricks. The obtained material has a similar resistance to plaster and can therefore be used for construction. Some specific shapes such as arches and domes would be particularly suitable for this type of material.
Thanks to these different techniques, a Moon base could be independent in terms of energy, water and the production of propellants and oxygen. It could even build new structures on the Moon without needing much supply from the planet Earth. It is a level of independence superior to that of the International Space Station.
We can also try to grow on the Moon part of the food consumed by the inhabitants of the Moon base. With water and electricity, there is everything we need to grow edible plants and vegetables. This experiment has already been successfully completed aboard the International Space Station. Several species of plants seem particularly interesting. Vitamin C1, vitamin K and potassium are essential for the body but degrade very quickly. To absorb enough, you must consume fresh products. On the Moon, astronauts will only have cans and freeze-dried dishes.
Kale cultivation could solve this type of problem because it is very rich in vitamin and easy to grow in small spaces. Potato is another interesting element thanks to its caloric intake. In addition, such a plant mass would recycle some of the CO2 generated by the breathing of the inhabitants of the Moon base. The biosphere experiment carried out by the Chinese mission Change 4 was interesting to observe the cultivation of plants. But we do not know yet if it is possible to make an adequate soil thanks to the lunar regolith. Some of the nutrients needed by plants should probably come from Earth.
There are many ways to get around the difficulties of living on the Moon. Dozens of Moon base concepts have been considered. NASA has made estimates for more than twenty different ways to extract oxygen from the lunar regolith. To create a permanent inhabited Moon base is possible if humanity wants to. From a scientific point of view the Moon certainly deserves some expeditions.
We can imagine Moon bases similar to Antarctic bases that welcome carefully selected experts for long or short periods. A more massive installation would require the presence on the spot of private companies and the creation of a real economy centered on lunar resources. The reconnaissance work carried out by the Chinese, Indian, European, Russian or American missions goes in this direction.
News of October 24, 2017
The lunar probe Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO), launched by NASA in 2009, made an interesting discovery : the moon has hundreds of natural cavities formed by lava tubes. Some of these cavities could be up to 900 meters in diameter and 50 kilometers long. Some think that these cavities could welcome a base on the Moon. Indeed, the conditions on the surface of the Moon are not very welcoming : no atmosphere, no magnetic field, extreme temperatures, micro-meteorites and radiation At the time of the Apollo program, nobody spent more than three days on the Moon.
The lava tubes, whose existence has just been confirmed, could therefore offer a protection to a permanent human presence on the Moon. The lava tubes are formed when a lava flow created tunnels whose walls have hardened at high temperatures, creating hollow tubes. This phenomenon is known on Earth but the lava tubes present on the Moon seem much larger than those of our planet. Lava tubes solve the problem of radiation and micro-meteorites for explorers. The temperature in the lava tubes would be constant, from -30 degrees to -40 degrees, while on the moons surface temperatures range from -175 degrees to 125 degrees depending on whether it is day or night.
It would thus be possible to install inflatable modules to create shelters in these lava tubes, thus providing spaces of several square kilometers to welcome humans. These spaces would have the advantage of allowing the occupants of the lunar base to live in a non-artificial space. In addition, the Moon is probably not completely dry : if we are able to find or exploit lunar water sources then it would be very interesting to consider a colonization of the Moon, which could precede the colonization of Mars or Venus. Indeed, the Moon offers real industrial perspectives : on the one hand the Moon has large reserves of titanium and helium 3, and on the other hand the Moon is close to the Earth. If the Lunar Orbital Platform-Gateway materializes as well as the lunar ambitions of China, a human exploration of one of these lava tubes will probably take place, and perhaps even the installation of a base on the Moon.
Image by ESA/Foster + Partners
Posted: at 6:46 am
Moon Cave Colonization
In October 2017,Japans Selenological and Engineering Explorer probe discovered a massive underground cave on the Moon. The space, which is 100 meters (328 feet) wide and 50 kilometers (31 miles) long, is being touted as a potential location for a lunar station. In fact, some experts are asserting that the best way to live on the Moon is in caves just like the one recently discovered.
Radio waves were used to investigate the cave, after an opening measuring 50 meters by 50 meters(164 feet) was found by the probe. Its thought to be structurally sound, and could contain deposits of ice and water inside rocks that might be used to produce fuel.
The cave is thought to be a lava tube spawned by volcanic activity dating back 3.5 billion years. Its situated just meters underneath volcanic domes called the Marius Hills.
Junichi Haruyama, a senior researcher with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (Jaxa), stated that lava tubes might be the best candidate sites for future lunar bases, because of their stable thermal conditions and potential to protect people and instruments from micrometeorites and cosmic ray radiation, according to a report from The Guardian.
This cave raises hopes that a lunar station could come to fruition in the near future, using the natural landscape of the moon to solve some practical problems. However, its not the only indication that such a project might be a reality sooner rather than later.
There was a time when the prospect of establishing a permanent human presence on the moon was pure science fiction. Even more recently, the general consensus has agreed that such a project would be prohibitively expensive for an organization to pursue. Recent technological developments might suggest that this is no longer the case.
Everything from self-driving cars to toilets capable of recycling waste efficiently could help drive down the costs of a lunar station, which papers released last year suggested could be in place as soon as 2022. This kind of penny pinching is essential if such an endeavor is going to be a success.
NASA simply doesnt have the funding that it once had access to. The Apollo program that put humans on the lunar surface in 1969 cost $150 billion (adjusting for todays standards). The agency will only receive $19.65 billion over the course of 2017, up from $19.3 billion in 2016.
However, the prospective moon base might not be completely reliant on NASA. Private companies like SpaceX and other organizations like the ESA could pursue their own initiatives and that might end up spurring on American efforts. In fact, some experts assert that humanity will only be able to establish a viable Moon colony through an effort that unites private companies with national space agencies.
The US is unlikely to have a large activity on the moon or Mars if it is the only actor involved, senior NASA scientist Chris McKay told Futurism. Why play king of the mountain if youre the only one on the mountain[?] However if private groups or other nations are [planning] to go to the moon and/or Mars then the US will want to be involved and in fact to be in the lead.
According to McKay, the ISS has already demonstrated that our life support systems are advanced enough to support a lunar station; we just need to get the tech deployed on the Moon. Fortunately, it seems that partnerships are already forming to do this. In May 2017, there were signs that NASA was pursuing a lunar mining initiative, which would likely be facilitated by the commercial opportunities afforded by a partnership with a private company.
To McKay, the moon is little more than a stepping stone albeit an important one. If we ever have a human base on another world I would bet it would be the Moon first, he explained. Being so close, and constantly so close, is really a killer advantage over Mars, or asteroids, or anywhere else. Like Vasco de Gama we will stay in sight of shore as we venture out.
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New Discovery Raises Hope for Human Colonization of the Moon
Posted: at 6:46 am
After the successful Apollo missions that put humans on the Moon starting 1969, the ongoing dream was that there would soon be a permanent human settlement on our only natural satellite. Best captured in science fiction works like the classic 2001: A Space Odyssey, colonization of the Moon was seen as somewhat inevitable. But as it turned out, the last time humans went beyond low-earth orbit (LEO) was the Apollo 17 mission in 1972. Sad times we live in.
The Soviet space program had some serious proposals for a permanent moon base, one of which was Zvezda. The plan was to use the super heavy-lift launch vehicle N1-L3 (the Soviet Unions competitor to Americas Saturn V) to deliver tons of material for use in habitable modules on the lunar surface. Each of the modules were to be launched separately. The habitable modules were to be docked on a movable train-like platform, to allow exploration or repositioning of the moon base. The concept unfortunately died with the failed Soviet human lunar programs.
NASA also had a lunar base concept in the 1980s which went nowhere due to fading interest in the idea and focus on other areas such as the Space Shuttle program.
The Moon has no atmosphere and is basically a dead land. Mars definitely is a less hostile place better suited to colonization. Elon Musks SpaceX has its sights set on it too. But the Moons big advantages arise out of its proximity:
On the other hand, it takes months to reach Mars, which also has a round-trip communications delay of 8 to 40 minutes and doesnt allow remote control of machines.
The Moons proximity makes it a stepping stone on our journey to becoming an interplanetary species. The question is, how? In such hostile conditions, how are we ever going to make a permanent home?
The daytime temperatures on the lunar surface exceed 100 Celsius and nighttime temperatures can dip as far as -180 Celsius. Solar panels can be used to power moon colonies during lunar day; however powering the colonies during a lunar night equivalent to 14 Earth days is an issue that needs to be solved.
Enter the peaks of eternal light. The Moons equator is tilted only slightly by ~1.5 degrees to the orbit of the Earth around the Sun. Its orbital motion is such that some peaks near its poles are constantly facing the Sun, thereby making them peaks of eternal light.
Well, eternal here means as long as the Sun shines or gobbles up the Moon when it becomes a red giant. The Japanese spacecraft SELENE identified four peaks near the lunar south pole which receive sunlight more than 80% of the time.
NASAs Clementine orbiter also discovered the nearby Malapert mountain was illuminated by sunlight nearly 90% of the time. Similar peaks are found at the lunar north pole. These areas will thus have near constant sunlight to power the moon colonies.
Similar to the regions of eternal light, there are regions near the poles which are permanently in the dark. This is usually due to the peaks shadowing those regions from sunlight or deep craters where the sunlight simply does not reach. These permashadow regions in the south pole have been observed by NASAs Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO).
Having not received any sunlight for nearly 2 billion years, these permashadow regions are an excellent trap for volatiles (chemicals which would vaporize in space if exposed to sunlight), including water. Indias Chandrayaan-1 spacecraft, using NASAs Mini-SAR radar, found more than 40 craters containing water ice on the lunar north pole. It is estimated that there could be 100 billion kg of water ice in these regions. NASAs LCROSS spacecraft detached the Centaur upper stage to deliberately impact one of the permashadow regions on the lunar south pole.
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How to colonize the Moon? - TeamIndus Blog - Medium
Posted: at 6:46 am
It is my understanding that Columbus Day is a celebration of the discovery and colonization of the United States. Colorado was one of the first states to set aside a holiday commemorating this.
Rep. Daneya Esgar in response to my communication to her regarding the Colorado House voting to replace Columbus Day with Mother Cabrini Day said that this bill was a compromise.
Sen. Larry Crowder opposed this bill at least partly because it discriminates against the Italian American community. I agree with Sen Crowder. Deborah Espinosa writes that Native Americans are offended by this celebration because of all the wrongs done to the Indian Nations.
Theres an old saying that two wrongs dont make a right. You cant blame Columbus for all the problems created by his discovery any more than you can blame President Donald Trump for all of the problems we face today with the coronavirus pandemic.
As my brother points out, this is similar to the problem of the Confederate Statues in the South. This is an example of political correctness gone awry.
Jim Towns, Pueblo
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Posted: at 6:46 am
Two years after the much-acclaimed handshake between President Uhuru Kenyatta and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga, is Kenya going up or coming down? To avoid the embarrassment of being seen as pro-handshake or anti-handshake, I will answer: Maybe, maybe not.Even as we celebrate that BBI has quieted things down, one cannot fail to notice the overpowering sense of seeing things as either black or white, depending on which side one takes.This could also explain the rise of not in my backyard syndrome where what happens on the other side of the fence does not matter so long as all is well in your corner. The equivalent for Kiswahili speakers is the saying:Pilipili usiyoila yakuwashiani?Support or opposition to ideas is fashioned along tribe and political affiliation.Why should we worry?Nimbyism risks denying the country better alternatives as loyalty and principled opposition gets undermined. There is more focus on being politically correct. Never has it ever been so right to conform even while breaking away from the group and taking a stand seems to be the right and sensible thing to do.The debilitating herd mentality holding sway currently negates the steps we have taken as a democracy. Democracy essentially centres on the contest of ideas. When a majority of the people begin to see things as either black or white - because none of them wants to step out of the common line - then we are treading on dangerous grounds. It should worry that Opposition MPs line up to defend, rather than kick the stool from underneath the government, while those supposedly in government are fighting government from within.
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Posted: at 6:46 am
I spoke to my cousins in Italy this week and last. They are confined to their homes and subject to $400 fine and up to three years in prison if they dare go outside for anything but the essentials such as food or medical care. They're being compliant and hoping for the best. I am a proud Italian-American for lack of a better term. Both sets of my grandparents came from Southern Italy.
When I first started visiting my wonderful long lost Italian cousins about 20 years ago, I soon discovered Italians are not like Italian-Americans or any Americans for that matter. I was shocked at how compliant they are with government restrictions and taxation. Also their political correctness was shocking to me. One shocking act of political correctness and virtue signaling you may have missed happened about a month and a half ago, at the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak in China and Italy.
China owns a lot of Italy and most of it's valuable commodities, so there is frequent travel between China and Milan, the business hub of Italy. So when word of COVID-19 was spreading in China and beyond, the virtue signaling mayor of Florence Italy took to twitter to tell everyone to "hug a Chinese". His aim was to show the world how not racist he and his city are. Fast forward 45 days and we can't imagine a more bone-headed move.
Can we now put "virtue signaling" and politically correct pandering on the list of deadly pandemics sweeping the globe? We've always known it dangerous and stupid, but didn't realize how deadly. It's rampant in Europe and has certainly spread widely throughout North America. The one continent where it's almost non-existent and threatens very few is Asia, especially China.
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