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Rolls-Royce has acquired seed funding to build on the moon?!

A nuclear reactor for a moon base seems unexpected from Rolls-Royce of all companies, but this could be the first of other partnerships.

An astronaut stands on the moon besides white lunar base buildings built by Rolls-Royce

Move over Elon! Rolls-Royce just received the funding to build a nuclear reactor on the moon

This is not Rolls-Royce’s first foray into the energy sector. Rolls-Royce owns Rolls-Royce SMR or Small Modular Reactors, powered by nuclear energy, 0-emission clean energy.  There is an unprecedented demand for clean energy, and nuclear energy is the most powerful clean energy source out there.  A source that will be embraced if it can be scalable, deliverable, and cost-competitive, and Rolls-Royce seeks to do just that. 

“It can support both on-grid electricity and a range of off-grid clean energy solutions, enabling the decarbonization of industrial processes and the production of clean fuels, such as sustainable aviation fuels (SAF) and green hydrogen, to support the energy transition in the wider heat and transportation sectors.”, according to the official Rolls-Royce website.  (Read more about their strides in providing nuclear energy here.) 

Rolls-Royce has received funding from the UK Space Agency to develop a nuclear reactor for a moon base. The UK Space Agency has announced £2.9m of new funding for the project, which will deliver an initial demonstration of a UK lunar modular nuclear reactor. The project will explore how nuclear power could support a future base on the moon for astronauts and could help with future space exploration and colonization.

All space missions depend on power sources, for communications, life support, and science experiments.  Compared with other power systems, a relatively small and lightweight nuclear microreactor could enable continuous power regardless of location, available sunlight, and other environmental conditions. This makes it a good choice for space exploration and experimentation

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“Partnerships like this – between British industry, the UK Space Agency, and government – are helping to create jobs across our £16bn space tech sector and help ensure the UK continues to be a major force in frontier science”, according to George Freeman, Science Minister & Member of Parliament in England. 

A permanent base on the moon would allow astronauts to do deep-space exploration, astronauts and scientists can conduct testing and experiments in a more controlled environment with better resources. It would also allow access to the valuable resources held on the moon, such as water, helium-3, and precious earth metals that can subsequently be used for fuel, energy, and manufacturing and provide more resources for Earth as they become scarcer.

Finally, a permanent moon base could provide a platform for a variety of scientific pursuits, including the fields of biology, geology, and astronomy. The moon is a unique environment, with low gravity and a lack of atmosphere, which provides opportunities for new discoveries and insights into the origins of the solar system and the universe. 

Rolls-Royce plans to have a reactor ready to send to the moon by 2029 and is collaborating with several leading educational institutions in England, including Oxford University. 

 Rolls-Royce is bringing nuclear energy to the world and beyond.

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Nicole is a recent graduate (okay fine, a recent-ish graduate) of Texas State University-San Marcos where she received a BA in Psychology. When she's not doing freelance writing, she's doing freelance Public Relations. When she's not working, she's hanging out with dogs or her friends - in that order. Nicole watches way too much Netflix and is always quoting The Office. She has an obsession with true crime and sloths.


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