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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2080/1701

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contributor.authorJayanthu, S-
contributor.authorTripathi, B-
contributor.authorSandeep, A-
date.accessioned2012-05-11T16:05:45Z-
date.available2012-05-11T16:05:45Z-
date.issued2011-11-
identifier.citationGolden Jubilee celebration & MineTECH'11 of The Indian Mining & Engineering Journal' held at Hotel Babylon Inn 18-19 Nov 2011 Raipuren
identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/2080/1701-
descriptionCopyright belongs to proceeding publisheren
description.abstractThis paper presents a critical review of mineral resources available on the moon. Samples collected in 1969 by Neil Armstrong during the first lunar landing showed that helium-3 concentrations in lunar soil are at least 13 parts per billion (ppb) by weight. Levels may range from 20 to 30 ppb in undisturbed soils. Quantities as small as 20 ppb may seem too trivial to consider. But at a projected value of $40,000 per ounce, 220 pounds of helium-3 would be worth about $141 million. Because the concentration of helium-3 is extremely low, it would be necessary to process large amounts of rock and soil to isolate the material. Digging a patch of lunar surface roughly three-quarters of a square mile to a depth of about 9 ft. should yield about 220 pounds of helium-3-- enough to power a city the size of Dallas or Detroit for a year. Although considerable lunar soil would have to be processed, the mining costs would not be high by terrestrial standards. Automated machines might perform the work. Extracting the isotope would not be particularly difficult. Heating and agitation release gases trapped in the soil. As the vapors are cooled to absolute zero, the various gases present sequentially separate out of the mix. In the final step, special membranes would separate helium-3 from ordinary helium. The total estimated cost for fusion development, rocket development and starting lunar operations would be about $15 billion. The International Thermonuclear Reactor Project, with a current estimated cost of $10 billion for a proof-of-concept reactor, is just a small part of the necessary development of tritium-based fusion and does not include the problems of commercialization and waste disposal. In case of creating helium -3 with nuclear fusion method on the earth, considerable radioactive waste will be generated. However, if helium -3 is extracted from moon, radioactive pollution on earth can be minimized. Thus, emphasis is made in this paper for further exploration for various mineral deposits on moon, and design innovative methods of extraction suitable for the geomining conditions of the moon for eco-friendly mining.en
format.extent309684 bytes-
format.mimetypeapplication/pdf-
language.isoen-
titleScope of mining on the moon - a critical appraisalen
typeArticleen
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