How We Could Build a Moon Base TODAY – Space Colonization 1

Humans dream about leaving Earth and traveling through the galaxy. But we were born too early to be part of.


Humans dream about leaving Earth
and traveling through the galaxy. But we were born too early to be part of it. Or were we? The reality is, we could begin our dream
by building a Moon base today. We actually do have the technology and current estimates from NASA
and the private sector say it could be done for 20 to 40 billion dollars,
spread out over about a decade. The price is comparable to
the International Space Station or the budget surplus of Germany in 2017. Not that big an investment really. The payoff would be immeasurable. The Moon is a sandbox to develop new technologies and exploit unlimited resources. It would start a new space race and lay the foundation for us to spread out
into the solar system and beyond. It would create a vast array of new
technologies to benefit us on Earth and we would all be part of it. So, why aren’t we doing it? Well, sadly, it’s hard to get governments interested in long-term investments in the future of humanity. Let’s imagine, just doing it. If we start today, how would we build a Moon base? Throughout history, colonization happened in phases: In the first phase of the age of exploration
of the new world, for example, European monarchs funded expeditions to chart
and discover and to stake their claims. They planted a flag and set up a camp,
but they didn’t stay. In the second phase, small missions set up outposts and settlements were founded, which was still very dependent on
their home countries for supplies. Some failed, but others survived and
established a permanent presence. Only then, in the third phase, did a true colony form to which tradesmen and laborers could emigrate, creating new wealth and opportunities
for themselves and their families, sending extreme wealth back
to their countries of origin. When we colonize the Moon, we’ll go through the same three phases. This time, without murdering millions
of innocent people in the process. The Moon is not a welcoming place for living things. A Moon day lasts 29 Earth days, with a difference of maybe 300 degrees
Celsius between sunlight and shade. There’s no atmosphere to shield us from meteorites,
big and small, or cosmic radiation. Worse still, the lunar surface is covered
in a layer of nasty jagged dust. The Moon is hard. But we’re good at doing hard things. In the first phase of lunar colonization, our explorers proved it can be done that a new world can be reached. This face started 60 years ago with the Apollo missions. Since then, satellites like the American Lunar
Reconnaissance Orbiter have mapped the Moon, while rovers like the Chinese Yutu,
have studied the composition of the lunar surface. Looking for water, ice and metals. Phase one is more or less complete. We know what we need to know to enter phase two. In the second phase, astronauts will build the first Moon base and this could begin today. The first small Moon base could
be completed in a decade. The first nation that establishes this base, will be akin to the first nations building outposts
in the new world 500 years ago. It’s expensive to send rockets to the Moon. So we will send as little as possible. The base will be light, little more than inflatable habitats
for crews of no more than 12, and will be deployed somewhere with a natural shelter. Options include caves,
like underground lava tube tunnels, or craters near the poles,
where the days are six months long. These astronauts will not stay long. The habitat is likely to be abandoned between missions, as solar panels cannot generate
electricity during the lunar night. But they’ll do the groundwork to enable
humans to stay permanently. Our first crew will consist of scientists and engineers who will study the composition of the Moon and whose experiments will explore ways
of using the available lunar material. Say purifying the lunar ice and turning
it into water for human use. And water is important for far more than drinking. They can use it to experiment
with growing plants for food. Hydrogen fuel cells will store
power through the long night, extending astronauts’ days. And most importantly: It could be split into hydrogen and oxygen. Rocket fuel! By harvesting water from the Moon
and putting it into orbit, the Moon base will supply an orbital depot. Where scientific missions to Mars and
the outer solar system can refuel. Compared to the Earth, it’s much easier and cheaper
to get things off the Moon into orbit. Colonizing Mars may mean starting from the Moon. But this isn’t a true colony, not yet. The base will be abandoned if funding stops. If we want our base to grow into the third phase,
into a true colony, it must become self-sufficient,
supporting itself via exports to Earth. Now, private contractors arrive looking to get rich
off lunar resources and support services. If it’s cheaper to produce rocket fuel in space, what else can they get rich on? They could extract precious metals, abundant in impact craters and other raw materials from the lunar regolith. One promising possibility is the mining of helium-3, an isotope that could one day be used
in nuclear fusion reactors, something the Chinese lunar exploration
program is currently looking into. Future colonists may export helium-3 back to Earth, providing us with cheap and clean fusion energy. Asteroids could be pulled into
the Moon’s orbit and mined. With commercial exports to Earth, the colony is fully in its third phase, self-sufficient and economically productive. Our base will begin using lunar material in its
construction projects, if it’s to continue growing. Fortunately, lunar soil has all the necessary
ingredients to make concrete. Robotic mining rigs can sift
the lunar dust for organic molecules and could be used to build huge structures way too massive to be brought from Earth. While advances in 3D printing, will make it possible to produce almost
everything else the crews need. It’s hard to say when exactly the colony
becomes self-sustaining. Growth is gradual, experiments are replaced by industry and the population steadily reaches the hundreds, encompassing more than just scientists. Engineers, pilots and contractors representing
countries and corporations will be present. Two of these people will make a breakthrough. Not scientific, but social. They will have the first extraterrestrial child. Throughout history, the birth of the first child was celebrated
as a moment where the seed of a colony finally and irreversibly took root. Here, it means that the Moon is not just a place
for scientists and engineers to work, it’s a place for people to live, to raise a family. Once this transition happens, the colony grows rapidly, building more habitats and schools and farms and
all the things needed to support the growing population. As our colony grows, all kinds of new technologies
will be invented to sustain it. They might develop crops
that efficiently recycle carbon dioxide, or the grow with very little water. They might find ways to recycle and
reuse 100% of their waste, technologies that are extremely valuable for Earth. They could even build the first
space elevator in the Solar System. With a space elevator, spacecraft,
astronauts and raw materials, could be brought back and forth from lunar orbit, without needing to use rockets at all. The Moon may become a hub for economic activity
on a scale that’s hard to imagine right now. It’s hard to say who will own the colony at this point. Will the first person born on the Moon
take the national identity of their parents, or will a new generation melt together
into a new lunar society? And when existing treaties that bar any nation
from owning the moon are inevitably rewritten, will the colonists be given a say? Will they declare independence from the Earth? However it happens, the Moon is a perfect sandbox to learn
how to colonize the Solar System, the perfect project unify nations, and the only way to guarantee our survival as a species, should something tragic happen on Earth. If we ever want to colonize the Milky Way, we’ll have to start somewhere. So why not start there? Why not start now? While unfortunately you can’t jump on a spacecraft and go to the Moon right now, you can learn more interesting things
about space and our universe. And we can even help you with that. Kurzgesagt and Brilliant are collaborating
on a six-part video series about our favorite science and space topics. Kurzgesagt has worked with Brilliant for a while now and we love what they’re doing. In a nutshell, Brilliant teaches you science
and maths with a hands-on approach, by solving puzzles yourself, you learn to understand
concepts instead of just memorizing facts. If you’d like to think more like a scientist, go to brilliant.org/nutshell and sign up for free. The first 698 people to use the link get their
annual premium membership at a 20% discount and also support our collaboration with Brilliant.

100 thoughts on “How We Could Build a Moon Base TODAY – Space Colonization 1”

  1. The number of the population of the world is growing fast what are we going to do about the space for the residents we will colonize the moon,space homes?

  2. NASA will send humans to the moon in 2024 let's make sure that the moon is better than Earth cause WE NEED CHANGE
    Search up were going to the moon in 2024
    I got the title wrong but you'll find the video

  3. Im thinking that when Earth people visits the moon they have to wear a spacesuit and when moon people comes to Earth they have to wear another type of spacesuit to visit Earth

  4. It would be cool meeting a person born and raised on the moon and teaching them the ways and history of earth it would be great just seeing their reaction to the open air and blue sky’s with rivers and grass it would be really fun

  5. Fantasy sure is fun

    "We're all gonna perish in a decade cuz AGW!"
    Those same people:
    "We can go to the Moon and Mars and survive among the stars!"

    We can't even keep societies from calling apart every 200 years and most of our populations right now are drugged up and can't figure out if they're male or female. Good luck with any future prospects.

  6. I want to be one of the first persons in moon to make a moon colony. I want to crie because im so Happy NASA announced starting colony in 2024.
    Imagine you can see the lights of the first cities on the DARK Side of the crescent moon.

  7. When is the world going to actually work to actually fix the problems in the world instead of just complain about them? I mean it would take much to take huge leaps towards a better future.

  8. This is interesting and all but what about the reduced gravity of the moon (about 1/6 of Earth's I believe) and how that would lead to the slow dissolving of the bones. How'd we fix that?

  9. Where were billions of people killed by European colonialism? Or did he say millions? I listened five times and it sounds like billions to me. I don't think a billion people even lived at the time.

  10. It makes me sad to know this won't happen in my life. I so want to see this phase of human existence, that is if it ever happens

  11. how will it affect the earth if we start MINING THE MOON and BUILDING STRUCTURES on it. Won´t that fuck up our ocean a little?

  12. According to this video, Vladimir Putin can build 3-5 moon bases all by himself, using his own (stolen, but currently in his only possession) money. Makes me feel creepy.

  13. I'd live in the Moon as long as I can play my favorite android games.
    I'd work twice as hard, too; not much distraction at the Moon, no stupid murders, no wars, no BS… yet. XD

  14. Forgot to factor in gravity because the child would be born with some problems and its body would adapt diffrrently due to it

  15. What about the effects of less gravity on someone's body living there? They would be too weak to ever go to earth. Let's colonize a bigger planet so we can all get jacked.

  16. The moon is just a bulb of lava. Besides Helium3 there is nothing interesting. We could robots to get it. Besides that there is the cosmic radiation. Not very healthy.
    The money is better used to fight illiteracy.

  17. Well, the Europeans didn't murder millions. Instead, the diseases they brought with them did most of the work. That's not to say that they didn't do horrible things though.

  18. you know what's sad. this is probably completely accurate, but when this time actually comes, this video will be lost for decades and they will never know that this video was spot on with its predictions of the future

  19. or maybe we could transfer all water on earth to moon or mars…It will make earth not sinking if iceberg meltdown at antartica cause by yaeh yu know..global warming

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