Technical and political developments have given Jan Woerner’s “lunar village” a boost this year, to the point that the ambitious European Space Agency (ESA) chief sees its development already underway. The member-states’ science ministers endorsed Woerner’s “Space 4.0” concept this month to underpin the idea; three teams in the $30 million Google Lunar X-Prize competition secured launch contracts to keep the robotic space race alive, and Donald ...

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