Sometime in the mid-2020s, a rocket ship sits gleaming in the south Texas sun. The Big Falcon Rocket, or BFR as it has been called, has been dubbed the “We’re Back” by SpaceX, which had been developing the launch vehicle for the past six or so years. It rises 348 feet in height, consisting of a booster stage and a spaceship stage. The "We're Back" is getting ready to fly to the moon today. The following is based on material from the which is about the possibilities of using the BFR as a moon ship.

The commercial path to the moon

While the current push back to the moon had been met with some concern when it was first proposed back in 2018, by the mid-2020s it was considered a great success. Commercial landers, created by such companies as Moon Express, Astrobotic, Masten, and later Blue Moon, a subsidiary of Blue Origin, have been landing on the Lunar Surface with astonishing regularity. The probes have prospected for lunar resources and have started gathering and refining them. The "We’re Back" will be headed to a spot near the lunar south pole that has already been prepared by robots, to some extent.

The original plan for the return to the moon had been to start developing a crewed lunar lander by 2023 for a return to the moon sometime later in the decade. However, successful tests of the BFR had alerted space policy experts in several countries that an opportunity for a much earlier lunar landing was presenting itself. Moreover, the launch costs of the BFR was going to be absurdly cheap, $7 million for the moon ship and another $7 million for the tanker that would top it off in low Earth orbit to allow the "We’re Back" to go to the moon and back.

Even with the additional expenses of astronaut training, consumables for a month-long stay, payload and so on, the cost of buying a ride back to the moon from SpaceX was ridiculously low.

The day we return to the moon

The area around Boca Chica, the location of the SpaceX spaceport, had undergone an enormous expansion during the past few years. Even so, the two million or so spectators, ranging from the president of the United States and the leaders of the countries involved in the moon shot, down to ordinary people excited to witness history, was causing a strain on the area’s infrastructure.

Hotels, motels, and Airbnb homes were making a tremendous amount of money. The highways leading to the launch site was still choked with traffic up to the moment of launch.

The first expedition back to the moon consisted of a dozen astronauts from five countries who would spend a month on the lunar surface setting up the first “Moon Village” as it was being called. We’re Back would deliver 150 tons of people, consumables, and material to the moon in one flight, a feat that had been unimaginable just a decade before. The Moon Village would be ready to go from the start, though subsequent trips by the BFR would expand its size and augment its capabilities.

Eventually, the second community of humans, beyond the Earth, would accommodate 20 people, with a surge capacity of another ten.

When the "We’re Back" finally lifted off, it roared into the clear blue sky on the combined thrust of 31 raptor engines. The spaceship stage would use six of the engines, four of which were configured to run in a vacuum.

Even after it vanished into the heavens, the crowds stayed put. The second part of the day’s proceedings took place a while after. The booster stage of the vehicle suddenly appeared again, slowly descending to the spaceport on a tail of fire. When it touched down on one of the prepared landing zones, the cheers of the crowd were like the roar of the ocean.

The tanker rocket would launch the next day. It would top off We’re Back in Low Earth orbit before returning. Then, the first ship back to the moon would use its engines to blast itself on a trajectory back to the moon. Three days later, the first astronaut boots would be on the lunar soil.

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