NASA is currently generating new ideas for the continued exploration of our universe. One of the ideas currently under consideration is a “human-tended waypoint” near the far side of the moon.
According to Space.com, a memo from William Gerstenmaier, NASA’s associate administrator for human exploration and operations, a team is being formed to develop a cohesive plan for exploring a spot in space known as the Earth-moon libration point 2 (EML-2).
This potential waypoint would take advantage of a certain gravitational quirk on the far side of the moon to park a long-term space presence there.
Libration points are spots in space where the gravitational pull of two objects (in this case, the Earth and the moon) balance each other out, creating a place where spacecraft can basically “park.” NASA wouldn’t even have to build a full-fledged station at EML-2. They could just take a capsule (like the developing Orion craft) and park it at the point with a crew that could assist in new explorations of the moon’s surface as well as other missions in deep space. If it works, NASA’s even hoping the waypoint could have international implications for further space exploration.