Mare Cognitum Virtual Chapter

Mare Cognitum. Source: Wikipedia Public Domain

Want to join a chapter of like-minded Lunar enthusiasts but don’t want to leave your home? You’ve come to the right place! Welcome to the Moon Society’s online Virtual Chapter, Mare Cognitum.

We’re calling it Mare Cognitum {cog nit um}, which means “Sea of Knowledge” in Latin. Actually, knowledge in Latin is “cognitionis” but who wants to say that? And knowledge is what this chapter is about, exchanging knowledge and learning new things. Actually, Wikipedia says that Mare Cognitum means the “Sea that has Become Known” but that just sounds silly although it is technically correct.

Mare Cognitum is an actual place, located just south of the equator, SE of Oceanus Procellarum, and NW of Mare Nubium. Mare Cognitum was the site of the successful Ranger 7 mission. Interesting fact: the Ranger 7 mission started the NASA tradition of keeping peanuts in mission control facilities for good luck (source: Business Insider).

Mare Cognitum meetings will be held in Zoom. Current members will be emailed a link the day of the meeting. “Seating” is limited to 100 people (including the speakers and support personnel) and is “first come, first seated”. We can expand that number with enough regular attendees. The meeting will be recorded and posted to the Society’s YouTube channel so everyone can enjoy it.


  • Date: Third Thursday of every month
    • July 15, 2021
      • Topic: “Lunar Regolith Bad, Mega-regolith Good” (working title and may change). Presented by Ben Smith, owner of Lunar Homestead and Mare Cognitum lead. This presentation will detail why Lunar settlers will want to avoid the regolith as much as possible and go straight for the mega-regolith.
    • August 19, 2021
      • Topic: “In-space propellant depots”. Presented by Dallas Bienhoff, founder of Cislunar Space Development Company.
    • September 16, 2021
      • Topic: “Aerospace Venture Capital Needs Science Fiction Authors”. Presented by Nic Nelson. Since the days of Jules Verne, and later Arthur C Clarke, authors have posited ideas which engineers later brought to fruition: the geosynchronous satellite, for example. Some of those ideas might have come to pass without the author popularizing them first. But many of them may never have occurred if the author had not inspired the scientist or the engineer… or the investor/entrepreneur.  Much science fiction of recent decades depicts a sort of technological fantasy world that speaks to the human condition, but not to the entrepreneur or the investor. But one branch of science fiction speaks volumes of practicality and promise: Hard science fiction.Hard SF authors need to write stories based in the storyworld of a fully-functional and mass-produced Super Heavy + Starship. Aerospace executives, entrepreneurs, investors, and regulators need to pay attention to them. We can help these conversations happen.
    • October 21, 2021
      • Topic: “How small can a fully self-sufficient community be, living off the moon?”. Presented by Niklas Jarvstrat, researcher with the Lunar Homestead Scotland branch.
    • November 18, 2021
      • Topic: “The Earth – Moon Dependency”. Presented by Darel Preble, Executive Director of Space Solar Power Institute . When NASA left the moon program after Apollo 17, the outcry was “What good are flags and footprints on the moon to us??  Its a waste of money!!” Today, because of technical work from many  great guys, notably Bill Brown, Dick Dickinson, and thousands of other engineers, scientists, visionaries and entrepeneirs we can provide a resounding answer. With a short revisit of the intervening years since I watched Apollo 17 lift off – I was stationed at Port Canveral then – let’s look at the very real  “Earth – Moon Dependency”.
    • December 16, 2021
      • Topic: “To Concord Space Earth Energy Ecosystem by 2035”. Presented by Atrayee Basu, Founder and CEO of STELLA tech. Atrayee will talk about visionary approach towards establishing a space systems that will enable clean, green, renewable energy for the utilization of humankind on Earth and supply alternative energy on other planetary surfaces while performing ISRU or in case of human habitat.
    • January 20, 2022
      • Topic: TBD
    • February 17, 2022
      • Topic: TBD (pending)
    • March 17, 2022
      • Topic: TBD
    • April 21, 2022
      • Topic: TBD (pending)
    • May 19, 2022
      • Topic: TBD
    • June 16, 2022
      • Topic: TBD (pending)
  • Time: 12 am UTC (it’s actually the following Friday)
  • Topics: Topics will be selected at least a month ahead of time and posted here.
  • How to attend:
    • Be a member with an account in good standing.
    • All members will be emailed a Zoom link the day of the meeting. Make sure you have a valid email for your Moon Society account.
    • Click on the link a few minutes before the meeting starts and wait for the room to open.
    • More to come!

Please email the Chapter Leader, Ben Smith, at ben@moonsociety.org if you would like to volunteer. Or have any ideas or suggestions. Or if you would like to present a topic. Or just to say “hi”.