Jump to content

mining the moon


ravener
 Share

Recommended Posts

mining is great, it allows us to build things. and things are great. the only issue is that most of the fun stuff is stuck where we cant get it.

the deepest hole on earth is 12km deep, the temperature got too high.

on the moon however the grond is mostly solid. we can dig as deep as we want. if we extend only the pressure we are up to about 100km deep holes, and i think we can go deeper. considering the moon's radius is only 1700km we are already a acceptable distance to the centre.

when people talk about mining on the moon it's mostly collecting surface dust and rock, i havent found anything on deep mining the moon. we dont know that much about what the rock consists of, but the figures i have seen of the surface compositon makes me think it has a pretty high concentration of iron and aluminum. probbably quite a bit of oxygen too.

the only real thing missing on the moon is carbon and water. good thing that is available on comets and asteroids.

if we move out to other moons we have phobos and deimos, both of which are only 10-20 ish km in diameter, easilly minable. with the low surface gravity the rock should be pretty easy to break as gas bubbles would be distributed, cracks from impacts would build up and not all the material has to have been molten/fused.

the moon is in short more fertile soil industrially than most of earth.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, you forget the potential of using the Moon as an "Interplanetary Pit Stop". If there IS water on the moon, we could Hydrolize it into its raw forms, Hydrogen and Oxygen. These to resources are the basic components of many rocket engines, meaning we could technically use our Moon as a gas station. As well, with the *microgravity of the moon, all we would have to do to launch expensive, interplanetary craft would to get the parts to the moon and/or manufacture them on the moon and voila.

*Technically, the gravity of the Moon is too powerful to be called microgravity, but its a fun science term that makes my argument better XD

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Even if the Moon was fully solid, which it isn't, doesn't mean it's cold by human standards. Tidal forces and radioactivity will keep it warm, and there is no atmosphere, and very little water to help you keep cool as you dig.

Smaller bodies, like Phobos, Deimos, Ceres and large asteroids are properly cold, and are probably differentiated (heavy stuff in the middle, etc). The lack of strong gravity will be both an advantage (no pressure, easy to move rocks) and an issue (equipment tends to fly away, and we developed all our mining technologies for places with atmosphere and gravity)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"quite a bit of oxygen"? Oxygen is the most abundant on the Moon. It's bound in silicates and oxides.
i know, around 40% of the lunar soil is oxygen by mass. but i'm not sure if that keeps on going to the centre. in any case it's abundant. even earth is mostly oxygen. about the same amount as iron (ca 30%. i forget if there is more iron or oxygen)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Even if the Moon was fully solid, which it isn't, doesn't mean it's cold by human standards. Tidal forces and radioactivity will keep it warm, and there is no atmosphere, and very little water to help you keep cool as you dig.

Smaller bodies, like Phobos, Deimos, Ceres and large asteroids are properly cold, and are probably differentiated (heavy stuff in the middle, etc). The lack of strong gravity will be both an advantage (no pressure, easy to move rocks) and an issue (equipment tends to fly away, and we developed all our mining technologies for places with atmosphere and gravity)

it isnt fully solid, but it isnt far from it. the core is around 2000degrees C and boring equipment starts to get compromised at 200 + degrees C iirc. that's still (if we assume a uniform heat increase towards the centre.) around 170km or so. with the abundance of oxygen we could probbably use it as a coolant in some way. maybe use helium from the surface or something (taking care not wasting it, it's valuable as fusion fuel).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This thread is quite old. Please consider starting a new thread rather than reviving this one.

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...