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First post, by keenmaster486

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Well, here we are folks, exactly 50 years to the day since the Apollo 11 moon landing.

Let's all take a moment to celebrate that great achievement, and the people who made it possible. What a monumental and absolutely incredible thing. In my mind the Apollo program alone made the 1960's the most technologically significant decade in history.

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Reply 1 of 7, by Shagittarius

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I'd always been told we never went back because there was no point. There was nothing to do on the moon...but now people are claiming other reasons...so what is it? Is it worth going back to or not unless we set up a station for deeper space exploration on the moon?

Reply 3 of 7, by DosFreak

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This is why we never went back:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo_18_(film)

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Reply 4 of 7, by Intel486dx33

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I am not far from the USS Hornet carrier. The ship that picked up the space capsule and astronauts on 1969 in the Pacific Ocean.
https://www.uss-hornet.org/splashdown50

Reply 5 of 7, by xjas

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I agree with all of the above sentiment, but I'm mostly here to chime in that Techmoan's latest Muppet sketch on this topic was genius.

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Reply 6 of 7, by zerodiagonal

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I think that was the first time I actually saw an entire skit on one of his videos (tbh I didn't find them funny) but it's surprising to see so many people appraising it, I feel like I've missed a lot of good ones and kinda want to go back.

Reply 7 of 7, by Kerr Avon

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Shagittarius wrote:

I'd always been told we never went back because there was no point. There was nothing to do on the moon...but now people are claiming other reasons...so what is it? Is it worth going back to or not unless we set up a station for deeper space exploration on the moon?

Two reasons; expense, and lack of a reason to go back. It is hideously expensive to launch things into space, let alone get to the Moon (and actually stop near the Moon, as stopping in space requires a lot power in itself), and combine that with the fact that the craft has to be able to keep human beings alive and safe from solar radiation etc, and then get back safely to Earth, well it's monumentally expensive.

As regards the lack of motivation to go back to the Moon, when the Americans did it, they were very keen to be seen to be winning the space race, which nowadays isn't something most people care about any more. Back then it was Russia vs USA, with each side being very keen to outdo the other, but now the public are much more blase about space travel, Russia (at least as 'the enemy') no longer exists, and the USA and other countries have much more important problems that they can't deflect attention from by putting on a (admittedly brilliant) public spectacle like the Moon landings.

Plus because Earth to Moon travel is so expensive, and the distance to the Moon is so great (nearly a quarter of a million miles away), the Moon is unlikely to see any Military importance in the near future, so it's not worth any country building a military base on the Moon. And though the Moon might well have many valuable minerals or whatever in it's mass, it would be so much trouble and so expensive to mine them and send them back that at the moment it's just far to expensive to even consider. If/when space travel becomes cheaper, especially if someone invents something safer and more convenient than fossil fuel rockets, then we'll no doubt start thinking about colonising the Moon, and what we can use it for.