Thursday, 26 February 2015

Project SPACE update at the British Interplanetary Society

Last night I was delighted to be part of an update on Project SPACE for the British Interplanetary Society.  Our study group has been working for around eighteen months so it was a good opportunity to discuss some of our findings and what we're looking into.

The group's leader, space advocate and presenter Jerry Stone, gave an introductory talk about the concept as a whole, focusing on the work of Dr Gerard O'Neill and the concept of large space habitats.

Jerry Stone describes the Island One space habitat

Jerry moved onto his detailed look at the mass of such habitats and his calculations on how much material would be needed to construct the initial habitat, known as Island One. His view was that the mass required was far in excess of that listed in the initial studies from the seventies.  He also discussed Island Zero, the initial space station design that the group has been working on.

Dr Mike Leggett then gave a presentation about lunar resources, including their composition and means of extraction.  He included within his discussion the possible obtaining of Helium 3 from lunar regolith.

Dr Mike Leggett provides details about lunar resources
I have been looking into the law of Outer Space and how it applies to space settlement and gave a presentation providing some points about this.  Looking at the rules set out in the Outer Space Treaty 1967 and the Moon Agreement 1979, I stressed that the present legal regime was not the ideal regulatory environment for private and commercial space development.

Talking about Space Law...
Here are the slides from my presentation :

It was an enjoyable evening and it was great to discuss the project with the audience afterwards.  Jerry even baked his traditional Project SPACE cake as a treat!

To learn more about Project SPACE please go here: