Space Colonization Wiki

(the title make it sound too cranky) Incremental space colonization and Antarctica colonization and ocean colonization etc...

from my blog

In short:[]

Use remotely controlled robots from the comfort of your room, to build incrementally an outpost capable of accepting permanent colonists.

Start by sending fully functional remotely controlled robots. They will assemble more remotely controlled robots from sent in spare parts. Assemble a little remotely controlled industry and mining operations. When the remotely controlled robotic outpost is self sufficient, it will start building infrastructure for accepting humans. First humans will be send in a one way trip(80% cheaper), there only job will be to raise children, send in as frozen embryos. When the population reaches a couple of thousand, it will be capable to interbreed by it self. We would have finally established, a permanent human colony, at acceptable cost.

Relevent reading on Clanking replicator for the industrial part. A lot of things are transposable here.

Stage 1 - Assembly.[]

First mission contains some functioning remotely controllable robots( just robot arms?), they are used to set up a little industry in order to assemble more robots. The first missions will send all the spare parts needed to build other robots and what ever tools and photovoltaics are needed. Rudimentary maintenance can be done at this stage.

It will be extremely cheap, compared with sending humans right away. No atmosphere, no food, no living quarters, no recreation quarters, no sleep, no rest, no radiation shielding, no failsafes, no anything.

For cheapness, most robot arms(and a camera) are fixed. Some are mobile, there primary purpose is to move the fixed arms around depending on the work needs. And very few will even have there own earth antenna on, so that they can perform antenna reparation(if all antennas brake down then we have to resend an expensive mission from earth)

Human controllers work for 1-2 hours and rotate in shifts, this way outpost infrastructure remains at near 100% efficiency use (human efficiency deteriorates very fast after 1 hour, they will be required to give over 100%). Infrastructures will be used 24-7, never stops, never, expendable machines will be used to destruction.

Stage 2 - Industrialization.[]

Setting up of local little factories. 3D printers for various materials (metals, plastic, resins, etc) are by far the easiest to use. Little machine tools and raw materials are sent, setting up little assembly lines. A little foundry is landed carefully and raw metals are crash landed (cheaper, other raw materials are probably to fragile for this treatment).

For energy: At the beginning, concentrating mirrors for energy, photovoltaics are too complex for early production.

Electronics: Send germanium at first, use poor resolution photolithography (extremely expensive otherwise).

Recycling: Recycling factories will drastically reduce imports of raw materials. Because energy will be much cheaper then raw materials, recycling rates should near 100%.

Stage 3 - Mining.[]

Gradually replace imports of raw materials from earth with locally mined raw materials, by remotely controlled robot miners. Maybe keep importing certain very rarely used materials.

Stage 4 - Empty human colony building.[]

At some point the outpost becomes self sustained, requiring only remote controlled orders from earth. From there, we can build infrastructure that can support humans. Living quarters, recreation centres, etc.

Gradually build green houses. First lichen greenhouses, they can survive space vacuum and thrive in low atmospheric pressure( liquid water at 0.006 atm). We should breed edible lichens that can at least temporary survive in a vacuum, later use edible extremophile bacteria. Finally, algae, more complex plants in hydroponics. When we have atmosphere capable facilities, we send animals.

Stage 5 - First humans.[]

One way trip of a handful of colonists(Yes, they NEVER come back, 80% cheaper). They will not perform research, they will be real colonists, they will be the first Selenites. They don't breed with them selves, they receive sperm and embryos( that would be trashed?) from earth, until genetic diversity is enough.

We still need to avoid toxic materials in earlier stages for when the colonists will arrive. Firsts colonists job is to care for the children, only send there as frozen embryos and grown by the women there. All the early colonists needs are cared for by the remotely controlled robot arms until the colony totally brakes even for good.

It will be important latency because of light speed limit. With the moon its 5 seconds(barely acceptable), with Venus/Mercury its around 8 minutes(sun its 8min), and with Mars 20-30minutes(for a one way signal). For Pluto, you don't want to know.

Since these huge latencies are imposed, the robots and equipment could be greatly simplified( everything is slowed down). Smaller antennas with lower bandwidth, slower motors, thinner structural elements, slower electronics, weaker photovoltaics. The whole thing could be made more cheaply and with lower mass.

Human controllers would be probably controlling 10-20-50 robots at the same time, probably with little pictograms reminding of what task the robot was supposed to be doing and a little film of the previous moves. Robots would be controlled like stop motion animation.

Work should be redesigned so that things can happen in parallel. On earth short event simulations could be performed with human operators, the instructions are send in block(series of ifs) and executed, the low intelligence computers of the automated outpost are performing the instructions until expected results exceeds a security margin.

We can build outposts everywhere simultaneously in the solar system. Construction on Pluto would be considerably slower then on the moon, the budget per year for the entire solar system should be reasonable.

And will need to be discussed at the UN.


The moon will be the first to be colonized, because of the only 5 seconds lag. Once the lunar colony is important enough, it will be able to send equipment for setting up new colonies. It will be cheaper to launch them from the moons surface, then from earth. As the front of colonization will spread, it will make it easier to colonize further. Further colonies will be able to remotely control the further still outpost with lower lag, then if they were controlled from earth. With economies of scale, at some point it will be easy enough to just send humans right away.

With important infrastructure up there already built, costs of sending humans from earth's gravitational well will diminish dramatically, hopefully to reasonable levels. And I would like to go there, but I'll be to old until then :( .

Commercial development of rare materials could happen immediately (RH, He3). Robots could be sold or leased to humans on Earth. Development of remotely controlled tourism. Low gravity experiments. Political benefits, in theory at least the nations of the world will cooperate.


Phase 1: First, I'll organize the creation of a realistic computer simulation. It would be open source of course, and at near 0 cost. Maybe it will not be 100% realistic, more like a game, or purely and simply a game for PR, or both. Because of the lag, the simulation can be very realistic, even for the moon.

Phase 2: With government support, we could then build an experimental outpost on earth with these constraints as proof of concept.


1. implement a half arced computer simulation like warcraft 1. It will simulate, antarctic, ocean, and lunar colonization. Done with "stratagus". Can be done with very few people. Simple, in 2D, only images, lua programming language.

2. The first game will help recruit, in order to implement a beater game, like warcraft 2. Done with "stratagus" again. Beater art, etc...

3. Previous step increases recruitment further. Now we start a 3D game, like warcraft 3. Done with a variant of glest (probably megaglest). Need modeling in 3D and 3D animation, and editing XML files.

4. Now, we start programming a very realistic simulation. Almost as the real thing. Trials are done live on the Internet. Videos are uploaded of video sites, etc....

5. We perform trials on earth.

6. Hopefully, we finally do the real thing.

Some, not very well thought out, early ideas about the details.

game features (1-3):

Have a 5 second lag (it could be turned off, if its simply annoying). Try to have everything as close to real. Cost, accidents, industrial processes, politics, etc... This is not just a simple game, there's a serious purpose in it. It tries to demonstrate that the idea is doable today. All technology should be very close to what we have today. Only barely ahead. In other words, no fusion reactors, no alternative propulsion systems, no space time manipulations, no cryogenics, no intelligent robots, etc... Acceptable stuff would be, ionic propulsion, solar sails, solar mirrors, green houses, etc..

To make the game interesting, we could play with various opponents. The default, will be a colony under UN banner. The "interesting" game play would have , USA, EU, China, India. Possibility for lunar cold war, use of weapons( like normal RTS games). Possibility for declaration of independence from earth? Formation of lunar federation from the various competing colonies(with the player as president, like master of orion). Federation AND independence. Independence pacifically, or after devastating nuclear war with earth. The moon becomes imperial power by it self, competing with earth? (we can assume for the game that the gravity well of earth is economically impossible to overcome)

realistic simulation features (4)

use python as primary language, (faster coding, and with a 5 second latency, no one will notice). It should be possible to do a great deal of realism(latency).


python-ogre: 3D stuff

PyQT: GUI sruff


First version, will just be a robot that can move around. Pick up rocks.

Multiplayer, of course.

Later permit building of complicated mechanical parts.

relatively easy ability for the users to design there own stuff

Any comments? Any potential volunteers? I have no serious programming experience, its going to take me for ever to get a prototype out on my own.Quantum immortal 18:33, March 12, 2011 (UTC)

Better options[]

The whole line of reason of economics assumes that there is no better propulsion than chemical rockets, see BTC travel and better launches for alternatives. Also, it would not solve the overpopulation on Earth.

It doesn't assume that there is no better propulsion, it makes no assumption what so ever on propulsion. This assumption must be seen from a practical point of view, if better propulsion methods are developed, the better. The plan tries to be as feasible as possible, by making the minimum of assumptions, and by keeping things cheap. In the short term, space colonies could beam down energy, when we have enough energy we can do anything, that would technically permit Earth to hold an arbitrarily large population. In the long term, it would also permit to send millions into outer space. Quantum immortal 18:31, March 12, 2011 (UTC)
Your plan also does not give the no men in black advantages, except (at best) to the embryos, if even that. And also, chemical rockets are doomed to be inadequate from start!
Chemical rockets exist since 65 years, if it was simple to replace them it would have happened alredy. My plan can be done with in a decade at reasonable cost. My plan its not about long term, its about something that can be done relatively soon. I'm not making the assumption beater technology is impossible, i'm making the assumption it will take some time in the best case scenario. Its not a choice between my plan or "star trek", its a choice between a colony with in 10 years, or nothing for several decades to come.--Quantum immortal 12:10, March 17, 2011 (UTC)
It is extremely naive to think that BTC travel must take a long time to invent. Help inventing them instead, eg. manipulated spacetimes or photon-protected superposition. I thought timescale-deterministic pessimism was banned on this wiki!
Realistically, what's your time scalle? My plan can be implemented in less then a decade, need some designing, but it can be done with current technology. Again you are doing a false dichotomy. Realistically, everything considered, what has the greatest chances of being realized first? Don't you think my plan, will attract more funds? I only see criticism that my plan is not ambitious enough, i'm criticising you on the fact your expectations are unrealistic.
"Help inventing them instead" You can help in my plan. You can't help in anything else right now. Phase 1, is to make a little simulation using the glest game engine (no programming needed, looks like warcraft3/starcraft2), in order to attract attention to the plan.
Would you want to help? I'm currently having a look in how to--Quantum immortal 00:31, March 18, 2011 (UTC)
As described in manipulated spacetimes (check that!), breakthrough propulsion can be constructed anytime now, if only someone with access to the materials (eg.supraconductors) gets the thumb out of the ass and really does it!
I'm sorry, there's nothing I can do about it. Visibly, neither you. However the simulation of my plan is within reach of both of us. Do you want to help me, or let your thumb where it is now :) . The existence of an active colony with humans will attract a lot of funds in to research. My plan is not in opposition to new technology. So, what are you going to keep doing with those thumbs of yours? :D --Quantum immortal 22:15, March 18, 2011 (UTC)
Do you mean that you do not have access to supraconductors or what?
If its so easy, why don't YOU do it. In the mean time, you CAN help me out.--Quantum immortal 15:43, March 19, 2011 (UTC)
I do not have the money to buy supraconductors and liquid nitrogen, and I have no access to borrowing them for free in a lab either. Do you have any potential access to supraconductors and liquid nitrogen? Or do you have any friends with such access that you may ask for help? I have none with such access.
Dohh, me neither. Funding is part of research. You CAN help with my plan though, you just need a computer and a internet connection. With the game/simulation, it will attract attention to my plan. Are you going to help me out, or continue doing absolutely nothing? If my plan succeeds, it will attract more funding in the end, in anything related to space.(Note: on the moon, minimum temperatures are at 70-100K)--Quantum immortal 21:44, March 19, 2011 (UTC)

My plan not only can reach longer faster and be more fun, it is much cheaper and safer too because it does not include chemical rockets at all. Can you help advertise my plan? I already do as much as I can!

Manipulating space time is not any time near the corner. Even if an effect is confirmed, it doesn't tell you if it will be powerful enough for practical use. In theory we could be using magnetic field against the magnetic field of the earth, but no magnet is light enough for a lift of. My plan is separate from lift of technology, it can be adapted for Antarctica and ocean colonization. These last places aren't exactly had to get too, but still quite expensive to colonize if you try sending everything from the outside. Even if you have cheap lift of technology, it still doesn't get you a colony.--Quantum immortal 18:38, March 20, 2011 (UTC)
Your statement about "using magnetic field against the magnetic field of the earth, but no magnet is light enough for a lift of" ignores the fact, described in manipulated spacetimes (check that!) that this effect uses the Meisner effect against Meisner effectand manipulates spacetime and gravity itself, which is different in kind from normal magnetic repulsion and also invalidates the statement about "not light enough" by acting antigravitationally. Saying that "manipulating space time is not any time near the corner" is just pessimism. Someone said "aeroplanes will not be a reality in the next 100 years" just two years before Orville and Wilbur Wrights flight. It is quite possible that placing the spinning supraconductors very close to each other will increase the effect dramatically. Lacking foolproof evidence that it actually works is no excuse for refusing to do the experiment. If it was, no theories would ever be tested! Also, the effect can be used for wormholes or alcubierre drive to reach more easily colonized worlds, and as stated in no men in black, self-sufficiency would prevent inforcement of regulations against use of state-of-the-art technologies and production of them in place, so it is not ONLY cheap lift technology.
Can, you do anything withing the next hours about what you say? You can't be doing both, mine and yours?--Quantum immortal 19:58, March 22, 2011 (UTC)
I could begin the project in the next hours if I had access to a supraconductor lab. I have not, but the fault is in my economy, not in my idea! Can you get that through your head?
First we do a little computer simulation (like a game, warcraft 1). It will be, antarctic, ocean and lunar colonization. The game engine is alredy done by other (stratagus). Its in 2D, 3D is nicer, but is more complex to implement. Need to learn to program in lua (just started that now), the art is only png images in 256 colors. A half arced prototype can be done with very few people. With more support, we do an improved game (like warcraft 2). When we have attracted enough support, we do a 3D game (like warcraft 3). When support base has expanded further, we go for an even more realistic simulation. This time almost as the real thing, performed live on the Internet. Then get support for a trial on earth( retransmitted live on the Internet). At that point, we will have very precise estimate of the costs and benefits. The real thing, will get done. I'm trying to do something with almost nothing here. Are you with me or not? Because my plan is incremental, i think i have very good chances.--Quantum immortal 03:27, March 24, 2011 (UTC)
You did not answer the question. Did you get that through your head?
Yes. The important point, is that you can't do anything in the near future. Do you want to help me in the mean time? Its 100% on a computer the first phases. I meant, that if you help my project, it wouldn't damage yours, and i can't help in yours.--Quantum immortal 11:53, March 24, 2011 (UTC)
The theories are clear. The component technology (supraconductors) is clear. Stop spewing you propagandistic lie that my project cannot be done in the near future! And I am already spreading my idea. Soon it will be done, and the results will come much sooner than it ever could with your crapshot idea, and also be much better! Your idea sucks.
No need to be rude.--Quantum immortal 16:35, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

No need for language cops like you.