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The evolution of lunar industrial development can follow different paths, depending upon decisions during earlier phases of space industrialization, especially decisions related to a space energy industry and to transportation systems 1.e. chemical (oxygen/hydrogen consuming) or nonchemical (electric or nuclear-hydrogen consuming) propulsion systems. Beginning at left, assuming the nod on using lunar resources and if microwave transmission is selected, and if fusion is used as primary energy source, a relatively comprehensive lunar industrial development could be stimulated, since the great majority of materials needed for fusion-powered microwave plants (metals, silicon) is available on the
If solar energy is used in conjunction with microwave transmission, a lesser stimulation of lunar industrial development through space energy systems is expected. Solar systems are not heated independently as are fusion systems. Therefore, their materials are subject to considerable temperature variations. This and other considerations suggest that different materials not available on the Moon should be used extensively (carbon fiber, graphite epoxy, protected by metallic coating from solar UV and particles). Thus, the choice of interorbital transportation becomes a factor. If chemical drives are used, the supply load from Earth could be reduced significantly (at an insignificant reduction in terrestrial jobs) by using lunar oxygen. Since sodium would be a highly effective metallic coating material for structural components of the power satellites, a more limited lunar industry providing liquid lunar oxygen (LLOX) and sodium could be stimulated.
The same follows if the Powersoletta approach is taken in combination
If the decision on using lunar resources for large energy structures is negative, other factors entering into Open World evolution at a later time will determine lunar industrial development.
Space industrialization is an overarching concept. But it is not one project, even one like Apollo (with its "side" projects of Mercury, Gemini, Surveyor and Lunar Orbiter) with a 11mited number of well-defined transportation systems.
This chart is a simplified reflection of the interaction between objectives and a key infrastructural component, transportation, in a protracted evolutionary process.
The upshot is the key role of three Earth-to-orbit transports (Shuttle, Shuttle-derivative Heavy Load Lift Vehicle (HLLV) and Aerospace Freighter (ASF)) and a multitude of Orbital Transfer Vehicles (OTV) as well as lunar ascent/descent transportation. In addition to OTV, the designations have the following meaning i
ASS'Y = assembly
Cislunar = refers to OTV operating between lunar orbit and GSO
Geolunar = refers to OTV operating between NEO and lunar orbit
Geospace - refers to OTV operating between NEO and GSO
LLOX Supertanker = a lunar liquid oxygen transporter of 5000 tons or
more capacity S/F : superfreighter (an OTV with a transportation capacity of about
NEO = near-Earth orbit
5000 tons or more)
SPS = space power satellite 75 T/KM2
larger or smaller or approximately equal to a reflector area weight of 75 tons per sq. kilometer
The applicable regimes for each of the reusable launch vehicles 18 indicated by dashed (Shuttle), dotted (HLLV) and dash-dot (ASF) markings. Two points are to be made here. One is that Shuttle and HLLV are not sequential but have parallel applications. Introduction of the HLLV should not eliminate the Shuttle's usefulness. The second is that the terrestrial supply requirements for building fusion-based large (5 gigawatt) electric power systems using lunar resources would be low enough to be met by the HLLV rather than an ASF (as to the use of lunar resources, see chart LUNAR INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT DECISION TREE).