According to NASA, we could be living on the moon in the next few years.
The American space agency has just announced a collaboration that could change the future of space travel forever.
And it’s all thanks to a giant 3D printer.
NASA’s Artemis program is focused on discovering ways for humans to inhabit the moon.
To do so, the company has paired with ICON, a 3D printing construction company.
The contract is worth a reported $57.2 million.
Together they’re aiming to change the idea of moon travel from ‘there and back again’ to ‘there to stay’.
That doesn’t sound terrifying at all.
ICON has made waves in the architectural world for its innovative use of 3D printing.
Its system, The Vulcan, uses a mixture of cement, sand and water to ‘print’ homes, layer by layer.
This system can create houses in just 48 hours.
And NASA believes that it’s perfect for creating homes on the moon.
First, the space company will need to set up special landing pads on the moon.
It is unclear how the machine will handle the radiation and vacuum conditions of space.
But once the printer is ready, the device, which is the size of a house, will head to the moon and start printing its biggest project yet.
This printer will be responsible for creating launch pads, roads, buildings, and anything else needed to make living on the moon possible.
This mission won’t involve transporting cement through space either.
Rather, The Vulcan will use materials found on the moon, including dust, rocks and mineral fragments.
“The final deliverable of this contract will be humanity’s first construction on another world, and that is going to be a pretty special achievement,” ICON co-founder Jason Ballard said.
NASA is yet to reveal how much a stay at the moon mansion will cost.
They have, however, stated that we could be heading there as soon as 2040.
We’d better start saving now.