Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Here are a few commonly asked questions about LunARC and details about our current activities.
Why the moon
The next generation of space exploration and development has kicked off in earnest in recent years, with billions being poured by governments into R&D, new launching technologies being developed by the private sector, and broad acknowledgment that the future of IT advancement is in space. Several space agencies are planning to establish settlements on the moon over the next decade, including NASA with its Artemis missions. NASA then plans to take the next giant leap: sending the first astronauts to Mars.
We believe that space exploration and development should be diverse and inclusive, not just the domain of governments and powerful corporate interests. This mission to establish a public art installation on the moon will inspire the next generation globally to: 1) dream and get excited about space exploration; 2) embrace the spirit of collaboration and cooperation; 3) solve for the critical problems we face on Earth; and 4) start a learning journey anchored around STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math).
We believe that now is the ideal time to begin thinking collectively about how to establish global public goods in this next frontier of development – and that a public art installation on the moon will inspire the next generation to not only participate in the space race, but to put equity at its center. We hope this mission, and subsequent missions, will help spark a global movement.
How the art will be sent
We’ve partnered with LifeShip to deliver digital copies of artwork from around the world in a time capsule on Firefly’s Blue Ghost lunar lander scheduled for May 2024. It will launch on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. LifeShip is a community-powered mission preserving the DNA of Earth’s species and stories of humanity in space time capsules. LifeShip successfully launched two capsules to space in 2022 and is on two upcoming rockets to the Moon.
Firefly’s Blue Ghost lunar lander. Photo courtesy of Firefly.
Where on the moon
The Blue Ghost will touch down on Mare Crisium. The site is large enough to be viewed through a telescope. See image below.
Photo courtesy of NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft, Oct 20, 2017.
August 15, 2023 - Deadline for art submission.
September 2023 to May 2024 - Art will be placed inside the lunar lander which will undergo rigorous flight testing.
While the lander undergoes flight testing, we plan to promote the art contributions globally and engage the partner communities in dialogue around space exploration and development.
May 2024 - Rocket launch to the moon!
In this first mission, the art will remain inside the lunar lander for as long as the lander remains on the moon. While this is largely a symbolic moment, there will be key activations back on Earth, and subsequent missions will expand on the art gallery by adding new contributions that may have aspects such as physical installations, projections, and interactive interfaces (depending on the advancement of technology).
Partnerships are key to our model. Working with space agencies, nonprofit organizations, and educational institutions, we plan to inform and engage people in all regions of the world. We are committed to simplifying the process so there are minimal language or technology barriers.
The LunARC community will be funding the mission.
Why develop the moon instead of the Earth
As a community, we’re deeply dedicated to improving life on Earth. Many of us have backgrounds and day jobs in the social impact space. Yet we’ve noticed that as the space race gets more attention and resources, it has become the sole domain of the most powerful interests. We believe that now is the time to establish global public goods in this next frontier of development and to include diverse and inclusive perspectives.
LunARC is a global not-for-profit initiative inspired by NASA’s Lunar University concept. We are a diverse community of people focused on social impact, collaborating on a voluntary basis, to put equity at the heart of the next generation of space exploration and development. We are driven by the principles of boldness, curiosity, humility and collaboration. You can read more about our growing community here.
The Lunar University (LU) has been shaped by experts for over two decades. The concept was first developed in 2000 by Nobel Laureate Baruch Blumberg and NASA’s Astrobiology co-founder, Lynn Harper. It was advanced in 2003 by NASA Space Architect Gary Martin, whose team helped develop the Vision for Space Exploration. The LU team of experts was led by Harper, chaired by Blumberg, and included two of the Chief Scientists for the International Space Station, two astronauts and a number of technical experts and academicians from multiple disciplines.
As NASA developed the capabilities of delivering payloads to the lunar surface, this concept gained traction. LunARC DAO plans to expand on the concept of Lunar University through various academic and research partnerships focused on engaging students globally in future missions.