It is well known that logistics, nowadays, is essential for the human life. Logistics involve everything, from the manner to produce a product until the moment it arrives to the shop.
Since the beginning of the logistic history (where that term was referred to the military movements) until now, several improvements in all areas were realised. Nowadays we could choose between several ways to transport our products: Land, air or sea. But, what about the space?
No space colonies have been built so far, so let’s do an exercise of imagination and, perhaps, design a logistic network between the space and the planet earth.
First of all, it is necessary to know the huge cost of sending anything from the surface of the Earth into orbit (roughly $20,000 USD per kilogram), due to this, a space colony would be a massively expensive project. Knowing that, the first step should be to create a more efficient and revolutionary way to transport materials, like the invention of the steam locomotive at the beginning of the XIX century.
It is well known that the humanity has always dreamed about colonizing the Moon, and more recently (with the discovery of water) the planet Mars. But, in the same way that happens in the planet Earth, warehouses or landing spaces are needed for long distance travels.
Is possible to create a warehouse in the space? Well, actually is really difficult (and expensive) to create any habitat in the space due to the cost attached of sending things. But there are some examples of space “houses”, the most important one is the ISS (International Space Station) which has more than 900 cubic meters of habitable space. So, theoretically it is possible to have warehouses in the space (even being really expensive).
In fact, some companies are interested in the logistics around the space. Shimitzo Corp. is interested in create a uninterrupted provision of energy from the Moon to the Earth, installing solar panels around the satellite and sending it through several stations via laser or microwaves.
Moreover, Deep Space Industries are planning to send this 2015 a spaceship to search for possible materials in the asteroids, and, in 2016 send another one with the capability to collect 150kg of material from the target asteroid.
Following with this line, scientists have found several asteroids where are able to start developing a space mining, due to their properties and materials. In fact, there is a existing asteroid, called 16 Psyche, which has enough iron and nickel to supply the humanity needs for several thousand years.
But, to start the creation of anything, the first step is to have aliment for the people who will run that futuristic plans, and due to that, there are several plans to creat food in other planets or stations, like NASA’s project of growing plants in a habitats. Or, in other direction, the NASA’s project to develop a food printing machine.
In any case, for all of that logistic and technological improvements we will wait several years. But, why not to imagine a future with an operational space network?