The Top Layer Of The Moon's Surface Has Enough Oxygen To Keep 8 Billion People Alive For 100,000 Years

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The Top Layer Of The Moon's Surface Has Enough Oxygen To Keep 8 Billion People Alive For 100,000 Years

A deal was signed between the Astralian Space Agency and NASA in October to send a rover to the Moon. The initiative comes under a project called 'Artemis', which aims to provide a layer of oxygen on the Moon's atmosphere through the collection of lunar rocks.


Although the Moon does have an atmosphere, it is too thin to sustain life. However, there is plenty of oxygen in the Moon's regolith, which lies on its surface.


The minerals present on the Moon's surface include, aluminum, silica and iron, all of which contain oxygen. The minerals are found in different forms, such as, dust, rock as well as stones. These are the product of the impacts of meteorites which have crushed on the Moon's surface throughout many years.


As a result, the Moon's regolith is comprised of about 45% of oxygen. However, in order to extract the oxygen scientists need to employ electrolysis, a process commonly used in manufacturing.


The process requires a vast amount of energy and scientists believe that it will demand use of solar as well as other energy sources avalaible on the Moon. The extraction of oxygen will also require the use of advanced industrial equipment.


If the initiative is successful, scientists estimate that the extracted oxygen will be sufficient to sustain eight billion people for 100,000 years.


The estimate comes after taking into account that each cubic metre regolith on the Moon has about 1.4 tonnes of minerals which include 630 kg of oxygen. NASA reports that humans need approximately 800 grams of oxygen each day. The scientists further assume that the depth of the Moon's regolith is about ten metres.


However, scientists note that it ultimately all comes down to how successful the extraction of oxygen can be.


[Based on reporting by: IFL Science]


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Thinking Humanity: The Top Layer Of The Moon's Surface Has Enough Oxygen To Keep 8 Billion People Alive For 100,000 Years
The Top Layer Of The Moon's Surface Has Enough Oxygen To Keep 8 Billion People Alive For 100,000 Years
A deal was signed between the Astralian Space Agency and NASA in October to send a rover to the Moon. The initiative comes under a project called 'Art
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