VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Early on the morning of September 30th, 2018, the sky near Cape Couveral, BC, will light up as the United Alliance Geo IV Very Heavy spacecraft will thunder into space carrying a shortbus-sized transporter with 37 geologists from across Canada. These brave souls have been assigned to study space rocks in more detail than any other human or non-human object ever has.
This will be the 5th launch in what the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) calls Project ZeroGeo, which is an aggressive mission whose goal is to support academic intergalactic space rock research by some of the best trained geologists on Earth.
“This mission has been some 70 years in the making. With the dawn of the Space Age and the study of geology, and the idea that geology on Earth is not changing that much any more, we figured, ‘Why don’t we send geologists to the outer reaches of space to do what they did here, but out there?'” – Bruce McEchereany, P.Eng., Mission ZeroGeo project director
According to the CSA, curiosities and questions from scientific and astronomical communities around the world will be effectively addressed by Mission ZeroGeo. For example, the geoscientists will get a close look at the geology of the moon, to see whether or not it is active, and to determine if the dark side of the moon is just as bumpy as the side that we can see. Another team of geologists is scheduled to launch in November, on their way to study if the dirt on Mars is actually red or if its just an optical illusion. Both teams will also compare the taste and effectiveness of micro-brew beer in space vs terrestrial consumption.
The CSA admits that as aggressive and dangerous as Mission ZeroGeo is, it’s the right thing to do to advance humankind’s understanding of the things around us. The organization plans to have every geologist in the country take flight to support this initiative.
“These types of projects are risky and we understand that. The first contingent of geologists who flew out on July 17th, 2018 were accidentally sent to Mercury and for some reason we lost radio communication with them before their Recon Super Heavy VII ship was scheduled to touch down. The last communication received was from University of Calgary geology Professor Dr. Bill Rockson who asked, ‘Is it just me or is it getting a little hot in here?’ It turns out that one of the engineers programming the flight path forgot to carry the 1,” Bruce McEchereany told the associated press. He continued,
“Our engineering teams had created a special Thermal Protection System (the heat shield) hand-crafted from special McDonald’s McCafe double-walled insulated coffee cups, but the radio silence from that crew strongly suggests that it did not hold up as designed.”
Opponents to the mission are not convinced that CSA has to send all of the geologists who live and work within Canadian borders to space to support this initiative. “I can understand their commitment to space rock exploration, research, and development, but having us all up there means that they were will none of us down here, and I think that’s quite extreme,” remarked the president of the Canadian Society of Geologists, Marly Marl.
This just in! 2P News has just learned that Project GeoZero was funded by a special interest consortium comprising professional engineering associations from around the globe.
But will they be coming back?