Rolls-Royce has long been testing solutions that allow it to propel missiles that move very quickly. This technology can be used not only to transport astronauts outside Earth, but also for machines that support mining on the Moon and Mars.
Dave Gordon of Rolls-Royce said his company could use its 60 years of experience developing nuclear-powered submarines for the British Navy. Submarine engines and spacecraft have more in common than you think. Both are designed to operate in an “oxygen-poor environment, and must be robust and reliable.”
There is a huge shortage of rare earth metals on Earth, which can instead be found on other planets and on the Moon. The idea of lunar and Martian mining should be realized in our lives.
The engines of the drilling rig must be powered by nuclear power, as solar power is not an option at these distances. Rolls-Royce is at the fore in technology development, but it’s not the only company trying to do so.
Companies such as Lunar Outpost, Honeybee Robotics and Masten Space Systems are developing a new system designed to extract water ice from the moon using rockets. This should happen before 2023.
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