By Mike Mackowski
We had about ten attendees at the January 18th meeting which featured Al Anzaldua, the president of the Tucson chapter. Al has done a lot of research on future scenarios for utilizing the Moon’s resources for supporting manned outposts and for supplying propellant for various deep space and cis-lunar activities. He gave a very thorough presentation on this topic, focusing on how to generate a balance between manned and robotic vehicles. Latency, or the time delay between the operator and tele-operated machine, is a critical factor in this balance. For example, operating machines on the lunar surface remotely from Earth’s surface has an unacceptably long delay. If the remote operators were in a high lunar orbit, or perhaps the Earth-Moon L1 point, the latency is much less of a problem.
Pat Lonchar, our chapter treasurer, made a video recording of the presentation and it is posted at the links in the post below (thanks Chuck!).
After the meeting, several members attended a planning meeting at a nearby restaurant. There, chapter president Mike Mackowski led a discussion of future meeting topics, possible field trips, social functions, and other outreach opportunities. Look for a follow up report here soon.