Permanent Human Settlement of the Earth, Space and Ocean Frontiers

Thursday, November 05, 2009

My Beautiful Machine

Last evening I stood inside the New Worlds Explorer habitat, leaned up against the walls and considered this beautiful machine. There is much hype floating about these days on what truly constitutes “cutting edge” technology. But as I stood there and looked through her hatch openings and considered where I was standing, I realized that there was truly more here than just materials. The NWE habitat is a fantastic new design – truly the first of its kind. An undersea habitat with a Kevlar shell. It is a living place under the sea that is specifically designed to study and understand very long term – permanent human habitation of the underwater regions of the earth.

That region is no small place either - while we live crowded and struggling on a mere 59 million square miles of dry land, this new territory of certain promise spreads out before our very eyes and unfolds to encompass an astonishing 138 million cubic miles of habitable space! I am speaking of the oceans – whose human population is now and has always been - zero. And that is precisely what my beautiful machine hopes to solve.

I am very much looking forward to discussing all this in the upcoming Motherboard Television documentary on the Atlantica Expeditions and some of the Expedition Leader’s viewpoints. On November 20th – rain or shine – our undersea team will be conducting that interview on the seafloor in Key Largo, Florida, six fathoms down in the Jules Habitat. I am VERY much looking forward to that event! Anytime I can go back and spend any amount of time dry and warm under the sea is awesome. That is, after all, the only place I really consider as ‘home’ to me.

And speaking of ‘rain or shine’ it is interesting how perceptions of even the most basic and simple ideas change when you move into an alien environment. As I so often remind Claudia when walking or running through the rain – “I am an Aquanaut – so how can a little rain make any difference to me?” As a fine example of that thinking, my very good friend Chris Olstad (who holds the record for most logged time living underwater) was chasing his pet Iguana. It leapt out of his grasp and into a canal. Chris just laughed and leapt in after the animal, thinking, “Fine! You’re in my element now!”

If you are interested in all this, please feel free to check out my book UNDERSEA COLONIES at where this and much more is discussed.