After powering through reading Artemis, I got thrown into a bit of a detour with thinking about the moon in more depth. I ended up going down a rabbit hole with some research and eventually decided to write out some of my ideas in more detail.
I find the new race to the moon is an interesting situation. Much like the reality of the original race to the moon in the 1960s, except the roles are reversed. In the 60s, the USA was behind the Soviet Union in space technology achievements – first satellite, first man in space, first space walk, space station, etc – all Soviet. Kennedy decided that USA had to prove something, so he implemented a proposal to send a man to the moon – something the Soviets had no interest in doing. This gave the USA a five year lead on development of their lunar program before Soviets thought maybe they should not let USA claim the moon for themselves exclusively. Today China and India have lunar programs with robots on the moon and NASA and ESA are slowly coming around to the opinion that we can’t let China take control of the moon – so they have a renewed interest in a lunar program (reluctantly).
I believe that the moon is the most important destination in space to go. It’s far more interesting to me than Mars is. That’s because the moon is close enough to actually be part of the economy. Not only is there some amazing science that can be done, but the moon would be the only opportunity to have a stable settlement for industrializing space – a chance to do mining, agriculture, fabrication, building, and ultimately export resources and products.
There are some interesting products that can only be produced in space – metal foams for example.
I started to explore these ideas more and have started a website to try and build a community around the ideas that would put Canada into a leadership role with lunar exploration. The Canadian Moon Society is an attempt to create a vision for the future of Canada that is ambitious, economically viable, and inspirational.