Sample return class
Tenatively named the "Boomerang" Class mission.
The locations for these sample return missions will be determined by the rovers from Mission 1. We plan for roughly 250kg of samples (and sample return container, this means we actually expect much less usable sample material) and a rover that can loiter on the Lunar surface indefinitely "prospecting" and gathering information. The landing is planned for the Shackleton Crater at the lunar southern pole. We will be looking for water, other useful resources, and a good location for a future shelter and outpost. Land will be claimed for the project (see growing and evolving discussion of Lunar and other non-Earthly land ownership debates/policies). Place at minimum one communications satellite in orbit with the first launch. At least two of these missions are planned to give a good spread of target areas and rigorously test the technology. Rock samples will be returned to the University of Western Ontario and, after being safely cleared, distributed to those who requested them or auctioned. Profits from this and other income opportunities will be used to fund the next mission. Media opportunities will include auctioning samples, contests to include students at various levels, naming rights as appropriate, documentary rights, etc. There will be a contest to give one sample per grade group, (Elementary to graduate student,) per continent to students. There will also be several low cost raffles, with the ticket prices being set by the local salary averages, in order to allow the "every man" to have a chance of owning a piece of the moon. These are all exercises to increase public awareness and exposure. In addition to its scientific return, the Boomerang-class mission will be intended to develop modular spacecraft platforms, which would later be adapted in the next phase of the lunar exploration as well as interplanetary sample return missions.
The Boomerang class mission is, of course, not set in stone, but for preliminary estimates, we can come up with some ground rules for figuring out what our launch vehicle is going to be like:
1. A trans-lunar trajectory
3. The Rover: based on the scout class.
If possible, the Living Interplanetary Flight Experiment capsule from The Planetary Society will be placed into the return capsule to study the microorganisms affected by the journey beyond LEO since the Apollo program.