Want Toolkit To Rebuild The Human Race On The Moon

The European Space Agency wants to build a “Doomsday Ark” – a remote access electronic information bank – capable of rebuilding the human race in case things go terrible wrong on the earth. The “Ark” will contain the essentials of life and human civilization, and could be activated in the event of the earth being devastated by a giant asteroid or nuclear war.

“Eventually, it will be necessary to have a kind of Noah’s ark there, a diversity of species from the biosphere.”

Bernard Foing

The construction of a lunar information bank was discussed at a conference in Strasbourg last month, according to DailyGalaxy.com. As a first step to discovering whether living organisms could survive on the moon, European Space Agency scientists are hoping to experiment with growing tulips on the moon within the next decade.

The first flowers – tulips or arabidopsis, a plant widely used in research – could be grown in 2012 or 2015 according to Bernard Foing, chief scientist at the agency’s research department.

Tulips are ideal because they can be frozen, transported long distances and grown with little nourishment. Combined with algae, an enclosed artificial atmosphere and chemically enhanced lunar soil, they could form the basis of an ecosystem.

The first experiments would be carried out in transparent biospheres containing a mix of gases to mimic the earth’s atmosphere.

Carbon dioxide given off by the decomposing plants would be mopped up by the algae, which would generate oxygen through photosynthesis.

The Ark

But the longer term plan is to build a information bank, or an “ark,” that would contain hard discs holding information such as DNA sequences and instructions for metal smelting or planting crops.

It would be buried in a vault just under the lunar surface and transmitters would send the data to heavily protected receivers on earth. if no receivers survived, the ark would continue transmitting the information until new ones could be built.

The vault could later be extended to include natural material including microbes, animal embryos and plant seeds and even cultural relics such as surplus items from museum stores.

“Eventually, it will be necessary to have a kind of Noah’s ark there, a diversity of species from the biosphere,” Bernard Foing, Chief Scientist at the European Space Agency, says.

Run By Robots

The data bank would initially be run by robots and linked to earth by radio transmissions.

Scientists hope to put a manned station on the moon before the end of the century, the dailygalaxy.com writes.

The data bank would need to be buried under rock to protect it from the extreme temperatures, radiation and vacuum on the moon. It would be run partly on solar power.

The scientists envisage placing the first experimental data bank on the moon no later than 2020 and it could have a lifespan of 30 years.

The full archive would be launched by 2035.

The information would be held in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish and would be linked by transmitter to 4,000 Earth repositories” that would provide shelter, food, a water supply for survivors.

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Filed under International Econnomic Politics, National Economic Politics