Astrobiology-What Can We Do on the Moon?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The Moon does not seem to be a place for a biologist. However, it offers the possibility of unravelling a better understanding of the conditions for habitability on the Earth and the conditions for life on the early Earth. It will be a place where much of the life sciences technologies required to establish a permanent human presence in space can be tested to complete reliability. Specifically, a long-term life sciences laboratory on the Moon can be used to investigate three areas of science that are currently poorly understood: (1) the linearity or non-linearity of the effects of different magnitudes of space environmental stresses on organisms, particularly gravity; (2) the effects of cumulative environmental effects both in individual organisms and across generations, (3) the synergistic effects of different space environmental parameters on organisms. The close proximity and scientific importance of the Moon makes it a useful permanent location and staging post for the human expansion into space.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)310
Number of pages8
JournalEarth, Moon, and Planets
Volume107
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2010

Keywords

  • Moon
  • Astrobiology
  • Life support
  • Mars
  • Life sciences
  • LIFE-SUPPORT-SYSTEMS
  • TERRESTRIAL PLANETS
  • IONIZING-RADIATION
  • SPACE EXPLORATION
  • LUNAR MISSIONS
  • MICROGRAVITY
  • SURVIVAL
  • ORIGIN
  • ENVIRONMENT
  • PANSPERMIA

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