- establishing an initial infrastructure on the Moon -


There is some evidence that the Moon's 1/6th gravity will be insufficient for continuous health. Studies in which the tails of rats were suspended thereby reducing the weight of the back legs to Mars level forces resulted in them developing osteoporosis over time.

However, one can spin up to a full gee and not experience the Coriolis effect so long as one is going "sedentary activities" no involving the turning of the head. Surfing the Internet like you are now doing is one of those activities, but there are a number more.

Will a few hours of full gee be sufficient to continuous health? We don't know yet so it will be an experiment. But it certainly seems reasonable that, at a minimum, it will extend the amount of time that residents will be able to remain on the Moon or Mars.

So the SpinHab would have a centrifuge structure that can accommodate dozens of residents at a time. It could be so designed such that residents could enter chambers at the axis which would then slide down rails to the periphery where the artificial gravity would be a full gee. In this way, people could jump on or off whenever they wished to without having to spin up and down the entire centrifuge.

Concepts for living in rail cars continuously going in circles would require a lot of work and result in having to live in confined spaces. So we don't expect this solution to be employed in the initial base.

One of the earliest specialty habs will be the FitnessHab. Research on the ISS has shown that a proper exercise regimen can largely negate the ill effects of microgravity. So, preventing osteoporosis and muscle wasting is entirely possible with a good exercise regimen.

One of the most amazing specialty habs would be the SportsHab. In 1/6th gravity everyone has superpowers. The elderly could do backflips like they have never been able to do before. Basketball baskets would have to be raised because everyone is now able to slam dunk. Indeed, new forms of sports could be created to take advantage of the unique environment. Perhaps a room with platforms in 3D could be a challenge where one tries to get through the maze by hopping from one platform to another. And finally, people will be able to put on wings and literally flap their arms and fly! It is likely that the residents will be more active than ever before because it would be so easy to be active.

Will we have to give up swimming in order to move off Earth? Why? A 100 tonne Starship payload could deliver layers of an inflatable habitat with a footprint of more than 8 acres. So an Olympic-sized swimming pole becomes entirely doable. And, given the greatly reduced gravity, one can push oneself out of the water like a porpise.

A lot of successful people like to play golf. But in 1/6th gravity, having a golf full golf course six times the size of those on Earth would be a challenge. Rather, golfing on the Moon might be more about precision aim than having the hit the ball very hard. But one could have a driving range where one aims at a target rather than trying to hit a ball a half-kilometer downrange.

Finally, as the population of the base grows, one of the last habitats to be set up could be an ArenaHab where the residents could watch while professional athletes trained in the unique environment conduct new types of sports. It's things like this that could attract people to spend their "sunset years" on the Moon and Mars. They would have a new set of experiences quite different than what they could experience on Earth.

Next: Medical Habs