- establishing humanity's first, permanent foothold off Earth -


A space program committed to establishing humanity's first, permanent, off-Earth foothold will have plenty of opportunities to inspire the American public and the rest of the world. For the American public, they will feel as though they are getting their space budget's money's worth. They would also identify with the program in that they would watch the crew establishing their home and doing a number of activities of human interest. For the children, they will have specific role models trained in specific fields achieving important objectives. And, of course, the kids will simply adore the dog and other animals.

Several years of TV programming suggests itself which would cover the various phases of the program. Although it is tempting to think about the cameras inside the UniHab as lending itself to some sort of tacky reality TV show, in fact, the show would be more real than the over-dramatized antics of reality TV stars. Here is a hypothetical scenario for a set of TV series:

1st Year Series - The public would probably be interested in the selection and training of the crew who were going to be going on to become humanity's first, permanent, off-Earth representatives. This series would also cover the history of the prospecting mission, and vehicle, hardware, & habitat development.

2nd Year Series - The second year would kick off with the four, historic, crew arrival missions. Then the public would be able to follow their settling in, overcoming any challenges, the steady progress of producing from local resources, as well as demonstrating a variety of music, dance, culinary, and other talents.

3rd Year Series - The third year could be the year in which, on a weekly basis, international crew from various countries could arrive, be greeted by our initial crew of eight, and share elements of their cultures (e.g. food, clothing, dance, music, and animals). They would then go on to conduct their own Apollo-scale exploration of the Moon using a refueled lander. Meanwhile, some crew would also work to set up large habitats dedicated to specific infrastructure needs for a growing base (e.g. a farm habitat). A sports habitat allowing for activities not possible on Earth could form the basis for several interesting shows.

4th Year Series - During the fourth year, private individuals could start arriving (on their own dime). Their personal stories could be highlighted and we would watch as the base begins to turn into a settlement. A modest-sized inflatable "Hotel Luna" could be set up with some wealthy and/or famous visitors. Additional large, inflatable habitats providing amenities (e.g. swimming pool, golf driving range) could be set up during the year setting the stage for additional private individuals (e.g. retirees) who would need a certain quality of life if they are to move to the Moon.

5th+ Year Series - Finally, the development path started on the Moon could be repeated on Mars with a UniHab and initial crew establishing a base there again providing propellant to lower the cost of accessing Mars for all follow-on missions.

Space settlement, even starting at this humble level, is of great historic importance and will be of great interest to the public.

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