50 Years after the First Human Landing on the Moon – Past and Future of Lunar Exploration

Open Night on 12 October 2019
“50 Years after the First Human Landing on the Moon – Past and Future of Lunar Exploration”

Overview

Members of the public are welcome to an Open Night at the SAAO in Cape Town on 12 October 2019, starting at 20h00. Professor Rene Laufer (UCT Space Lab) will present a talk titled 50 Years after the First Human Landing on the Moon – Past and Future of Lunar Exploration. This will be followed by a tour of the site and (weather permitting) star gazing.

Summary of the talk

50 years after the first landing of humans on the moon, as part of NASA’s Apollo programme, lunar exploration is highly prioritised on the agenda of many nations. Countries like the USA and Russia also China, India, Japan, Israel and member states of the European Space Agency as well as many emerging nations participate or plan to contribute to robotic and maybe soon again human missions to our closest neighbour in space.
In addition several companies, often entrepreneurial start-ups of the so called new space economy  from all over the globe intend to establish the moon as a new economic zone for commercial space activities. The moon could offer being a laboratory for science and technology development as well as a proving ground for further exploration of the solar system including in-situ resource utilisation to mine minerals and metals as well as the production of propellant and components for spacecraft and space infrastructure. Within international collaborative projects we might even see 50 different flags on the moon within the next 50 years including the South African one.

Venue

The Open Night will take place at the SAAO in Cape Town. The SAAO is located off Liesbeeck Parkway, next to the River Club.

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Gates open at 19h30 and parking is available on site.

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