Knowledge Station: A lunar ark to save life on earth!
The world may not be coming to an end right away but that hasn’t stopped our scientists from finding ways to save humanity. Be it on earth, or the moon. Researchers have decided to send samples of 6.7 million species from earth to the moon and preserve it there in case we lose all hope of survival on our planet. The ‘lunar ark’ as it’s called would be hidden in lava tubes.
The ark, or gene bank, would be safely hidden in these hollowed-out tunnels and caves sculpted by lava. This lava came out on the moon more than 3 billion years ago. The ark would be powered by solar panels above. It would hold the cryogenically preserved genetic material of all 6.7 million known species of plants, animals and fungi on Earth. This would require at least 250 rocket launches to transport to the moon.
Scientists believe the endeavor could safeguard our planet’s wildlife against both natural and human-caused apocalyptic scenarios, such as a supervolcano eruption or a nuclear war, and ensure the survival of their genes.
And the moon was the obvious choice as it’s only four days away from earth (in rocket) and the samples can easily be contained in the lava tubes.
The proposed ark would include two main sections above and below ground. The genetic samples would be kept in cryostorage modules inside the lava tubes that would be connected to the surface by elevators. On the surface, a communications array and solar panels would allow the ark to be maintained autonomously and an airlock would allow for human visitors.
In order for the samples to be cryogenically preserved, they must be stored at extremely low temperatures between minus 180 to minus 196 degrees Celsius.
The moon was created when a rock the size of Mars slammed into Earth, shortly after the solar system began forming about 4.5 billion years ago