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NASA Exercise: Survival on the Moon

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  1. NASA Exercise: Survival on the Moon Boston Debate League Adapted From NASA

  2. 15 – Box of Matches • There’s not enough oxygen on the moon to light a match, in fact the moon has no atmosphere. • The moon and most of space is a near “vacuum”- an area that is empty of any matter (stuff).

  3. 14-Magnetic Compass • Since the moon does not have polarized, magnetic poles a magnetic compass is worthless. • The moon does not have polarized, magnetic poles because the moon does not have a molten/liquid iron core. Magnetism is a result of moving electrical charge. Liquid metal has an electric charge and when they move in a core it creates a magnetic field. This is how Earth’s magnetic field.

  4. 13-Portable Heating Unit • Not needed unless on the dark side of the moon. As you are on the light side, it is too hot to use. • To deal with this dramatic range in temperature, spacesuits are heavily insulated with layers of fabric and then covered with reflective outer layers. This minimizes the temperature differences between when the astronaut is in the sunlight and when in shade. Space suits also have internal heaters and cooling systems, and liquid heat exchange pumps that remove excess heat. • http://www.universetoday.com/19623/temperature-of-the-moon/

  5. 12-One case of dehydrated milk • This is the bulkier of the two food concentrates. Almost too heavy to justify carrying. The calories would help though.

  6. 11-Two .45 calibre pistols • This could possible used as a means of self-propulsion. • The Moon has 1/6 the Gravity of Earth partially because it has less mass than Earth, and because of this when you jump up you can jump a lot higher and you could even shoot a pistol and the kick back could help you propel yourself. • Also, if you somehow got booted off the moon, in space there would be nothing to push off of to move so you would have to propel yourself somehow and a gun could help with that.

  7. 10-Signal Flares • This could be used as a distress signal when the mother ship is sighted. • On the moon, since there is no atmosphere, you are basically standing on top of a rock inside of a vacuum. Without air or some other medium (material) sound waves cannot travel and thus could not be used to signal anyone. However, light, and other forms of electromagnetic radiation (e.g. radio waves, microwaves, gamma rays) can travel in a vacuum. So this would work.

  8. 9- Self-inflating life raft • CO2 bottle in military raft may be used for propulsion for the same reasons before. • Also, it could be used to protect you from the heat or to help transport the injured. • Unfortunately it’s kind of bulky.

  9. 8- Parachute Silk • The silk could be used to protect you from the sunlight, a form of electromagnetic radiation. • On earth the atmosphere and the Earth’s magnetic field both protect us from a lot of bad electromagnetic radiation. There is no protection from this in space.

  10. 7-First aid kit, including injection needle • Needles connected to vials of vitamins and medicines, etc. will fit specialized hole in NASA space suit.

  11. 6-Fifty feet of nylon rope • Useful in scaling cliffs and tying the injured together so that they do not get lost. • The moon has a lot of craters, which are caused by asteroid (big rock) collisions. The make the moon look like Swiss cheese.

  12. 5-Solar powered FM receiver-transmitter • For communication with mother ship (but FM requires line-of-sight transmission and can only be used over short range). • Since space is a vacuum only electromagnetic radiation like radio waves can help you communicate a message. No one will hear you scream…unless you scream into a walky-talky.

  13. 4-Food Concentrate • This is an efficient means of getting people fed with the calories/energy they need to keep going. • As far as we know there is no plants or animals in space to eat.

  14. 3-Stellar map • This would be the main means of navigating the moon. Star patterns on the moon are essentially the same as they are on Earth. • Without a magnetic field, this is all you have.

  15. 2-20 liters of water • You will die pretty quick without water. • The water on the moon is not easy to mine as they are locked in the moon’s soil in small amounts or are in really cold places like craters or the moon’s poles.

  16. 1-Two 100 lb tanks of Oxygen • You will die even faster without oxygen. • The no atmosphere, no oxygen, no fun witmoon has hout it.