Moon Village’ is a concept that seeks to transform the paradigm shift referred to unprecedented international cooperation in space exploration and the new approaches of Moon exploration and exploitation into a set of concrete actions and create an environment where both international cooperation and the commercialization of space can thrive in a sustainable manner.Moon Village brings together efforts from the private sector, governments, academics and others to explore and use the Moon in a sustainable manner. Realizing the Moon Village will be a major step forward for the peaceful development of humankind.
The Moon Village is not a literal village on the Moon, it is not an International Space Station on the Moon, and it is not a single science facility. Rather, it is a diverse community of projects carried out by stakeholders from different fields (for example, technical, scientific, cultural, economic) working together under the auspices of lean coordination mechanisms and/or common standards (i.e., technical, and ethical), and globally harmonizing existing resources to reach further-term aims. It acts as a catalyst for new alliances between public and private entities, including non-space industries and operators. Additionally, the Moon Village will provide a strong inspirational and educational foundation for future generations.
A basic feature of the Moon Village is the principal of broad international cooperation. Through this, it can catalyze government, scientific research, education, and industry activities globally, stimulating a virtuous cycle of economic development by all and for all, which represents a key factor for the peaceful future of humankind. The Moon Village concept comprises a wide range of activities, with elements ranging across automatic/robotic activities, human-tended operations and eventual human settlement to achieve sustainable lunar orbital and surface operations, serving multiple purposes on an open-architecture basis. Government and private funding will provide the resources to build necessary equipment and facilities by industry allowing scientific research and creation of new products and services. The infrastructure to be built will also foster the creation of a governance and contractual framework to support the economy of new markets. Specifically, a significant value of the Moon Village will be its role as a proving ground for missions further out in the solar system.
A fundamental element for the Moon Village implementation are the “Moon Village Principles”, issued in December 2018, define, for the first time, the boundaries of the Moon Village Principles:
Principle 1: Adhere to applicable International Rules and Agreements dealing with human activities in space, such as the Outer Space Treaty of 1967 and others4, and conduct peaceful activities with thoughtful consideration and respect for the cultural heritage of humanity on the Moon.
Principle 2: Improve Knowledge of the lunar environment and its use for scientific research.
Principle 3: Reduce the Cost and Risk of transport to and from Earth and the Moon, and within cis-Lunar space.
Principle 4: Support the Economic Development of the lunar community.
Principle 5: Employ or establish and document open-source engineering Standards of broad applicability and/or usefulness.
Principle 6: Develop and build elements / systems that provide Critical Services for lunar missions and activities, such as navigation, communications, power, and resources.
Principle 7: Develop and demonstrate Technology enabling cost-effective, reliable and safe robotic and human operations on the Moon’s surface and surroundings.
Principle 8: Make available sufficient information to allow global cooperation and engagement involving the general public in the expansion of human activities to, and eventual settlement of the Moon.
Principle 9: Contribute ethically to human society in terms of Culture, the Arts, Education or other fundamentals.
The MVA will annually assess the missions and activities of various organizations with respect to MVA Principles and the convergence of views and values between our members on this common vision.
The First Moon Village Principles – Mission Prize 2019
At the IAF/GNF event in Paris on March 27, 2019, the first two prizes have been awarded to:
- Lunar Reconaissance Orbiter (LRO) – NASA(USA)
- Chang’E-4 – CNSA(China)
- Chandrayaan 2 – ISRO(India)
The physical prizes have been awarded during the 3rd International Moon Village Workshop & Symposium in Tokyo and Kyoto, Japan, December 05 – 08, 2019.