The Sanctuary space mission will carry 17 sapphire discs containing a selection of scientific information, artistic works and two human genomes on the Moon to preserve the memory of our world for millions of years.
This is one of the objectives of the interesting project Sanctuary that is made possible by the French CEA (Nuclear Energy Commission), in collaboration with PST Services and Audi.
This mission will be launched on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the first manned mission on the Moon, on July 20th, 2019, and, to some extent, Sanctuary mission is, for more than one reason, pretty much original.
Sanctuary will explore the remains of the Apollo 17 mission
As stated by the CEA, Sanctuary is indeed the first exploration mission of a private space corporation and the first space mission dedicated to archeology. For twelve days, two robots will explore the remains left behind by American astronauts of the first and last mission on the Moon’s surface, the Apollo 17.
Moreover, the Sanctuary space mission will carry a very particular cargo – 17 sapphire discs, which are designed to preserve the memory of our world for millions of years.
Sanctuary, the ship that will land on the Moon in the region Taurus Littrow, will have 17 sapphire discs on board, which are containing, in the form of images, texts, and the entirety of two human genomes (a man, a woman), a selection of scientific, artistic, and collaborative works that are the cultural legacy of the Earth.
Sanctuary is not aiming for ET
However, this mission will not address hypothetical extraterrestrials on the Moon as it has been the cases with the probes Pioneer and Voyager. The aim of the Sanctuary project is to address to far-distant future generations of humans.
Once the Sanctuary space mission is complete, the probe will remain on the Moon and, therefore, will be accessible for our future descendants. “It’s about talking to them about us, here and now,” notes the creators of the project.