NASA announces plans to construct a moonbase by the end of the decade

Describing its prospective lunar expansion as “an incremental buildup of infrastructure on the surface” including “new rovers, power systems, habitats, and more”, NASA hasn’t excluded the possibility of a prison colony, so that’s intriguing.

The Artemis program is expected to start in 2021 with a test launch of the new Orion rocket, according to NASA’s website. A second mission in 2023 will take a team of astronauts to complete important operational evaluations like the spaceship not exploding in orbit (or whatever) in preparation for an actual landing in 2024.

Wearing modern spacesuits that allow for greater flexibility and movement than those of their Apollo predecessors, astronauts will collect samples and conduct a range of science experiments over the course of nearly seven days.

Throughout the Artemis program, robots and humans will search for, and potentially extract, resources such as water that can be converted into other usable resources, including oxygen and fuel. By fine-tuning precision landing technologies as well as developing new mobility capabilities, astronauts will travel farther distances and explore new regions of the Moon.

It’s like unit queues and tech unlocks, but IRL and without alien parasites laying eggs in people’s eyes. I mean, probably without those. Science is supposed to be about discovery, though, and I think waking up to space-worms grazing on your cornea counts, and besides, it’s something to keep the prison colonists occupied.

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