Russia is planning the ultimate “get away from it all” holiday on the Moon to be ready in under a decade.
Patron Moon is a space base which is set to be opening for business in just nine years.
Launched using Russia’s new superheavy rocket Yenisei, the Moon base will touch down and automatically dig itself into a 130-foot hole as protection from the harsh radiation on the lunar surface.
The three main habitat modules will unfold themselves on arrival and the 70-tonne, nuclear-powered Moon hotel will then be open to paying guests.
Each guest will be allowed a 10m square cabin, although it’s unclear how much of the Moon they’ll see from the bottom of a man-made crater.
Those pioneering holidaymakers will help pay for the facility which will also be used by Russian space agency Roscosmos for scientific purposes.
Each trip – expected to last around three days – will cost between 10 and 30 million dollars.
Roscosmos believes the commercial use of the base will mean the Patron Moon pays for itself within its first year.
The cost of the base is quoted at the surprisingly low figure of 462 million dollars.
Roscosmos has announced that the base will make use of “local resources” on the Moon, and exploration of the surrounding area will be undertaken by “avatar robots”.
The agency’s next scheduled Moon landing is set to take place in July 2021.
Luna 25 is expected to land at the lunar South Pole near the Boguslavsky crater.
One of its mission goals is to test out a drill to penetrate the Moon’s surface for sample collection.
Meanwhile, NASA’s next run of crewed missions to the Moon is expected to begin with a landing in 2024, as part of the Apollo program’s successor, Project Artemis.
By email@example.com (Michael Moran)