American Society of Civil Engineers

Interlune-Intermars Business Initiative: Returning to Deep Space

by Harrison H. Schmitt, (Adjunct Prof., Engrg., Univ. of Wis., Dept. of Nuclear Engrg. and Engrg. Phys., 439 Engrg. Res. Build., 1500 Engineering Dr., Madison, WI 53706-1687)

Journal of Aerospace Engineering, Vol. 10, No. 2, April 1997, pp. 60-67, (doi:

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Document type: Journal Paper
Abstract: The corporate vision of a proposed Interlune-Intermars Initiative encompasses commercial enterprises related to resources from space that support the preservation of the human species and our home planet. Within this vision, the major mission objectives of the Initiative are to provide investors with a competitive rate of return; protect the Earth’s environment and expand the well-being of its inhabitants by using energy from space, particularly lunar ³He, as a major alternative to fossil and fission fuels; develop resources from space that will support future near-Earth and deep-space activities and human settlement; and develop reliable and robust capabilities to launch payloads from Earth to deep space at a cost of $1,000/kg or less (1996 dollars). Attaining a level of sustaining operations for the core fusion power and lunar resource business requires about 15 years and 10–$15 billion of private investment capital as well as the successful marketing and profitable sales of a variety of applied fusion technologies.

ASCE Subject Headings:
Business management
Economic factors
Resource management
Space exploration