Humans Or Robots First?
Since the early days of space exploration, a debate has raged over one big question: Should we really be sending humans out into the cosmos, or just do it with robots?
Both visions have sound logic in their favor. Smart automated machines are relatively cheap and disposable and can operate continuously in harsh environments. Since the moon certainly qualifies as a harsh environment, and lunar operations would clearly benefit from continuous activity, robots might seem the most sensible option for scaling up a moon colony, particularly if the goal is a commercial operation. Certainly many smart people think that’s the best choice.
But humans have some advantages of their own. We’re better at thinking critically and adapting to unexpected challenges in new environments. The moon certainly qualifies as a new environment; while we can make assumptions and build in precautions for robotic systems on the moon, lunar exploration and development will undoubtedly require some quick thinking and adaptation in order to succeed. READ MORE ON: POLITICO