From Blastr: On Sept. 13, 1999, a tragedy befell all mankind. An accident of unknown origin at the nuclear waste dumps on the far side of the moon caused a massive explosion that hurled the moon out of Earth orbit.
Traveling away at high speed, there was no chance for rescue of the more than 300 crew on Moonbase Alpha. All hands were presumed lost.
At least, that was the premise of the sci-fi classic Space: 1999, a British TV show from the 1970s. Let's be clear right away: I loved that show. A lot. I was a kid when it hit the air, but the recent release of the first season on Blu-ray caused me to go back and rewatch it, and I have to say a several of the episodes were a lot of fun. And back in the day, that show helped inspire me to become a scientist.
Even cooler, the show has been greenlit for a reboot: Space: 2099 will be the updated version hitting your TV in the future.
So maybe it's time to think again about the show. The basic premise is that the waste dump explosions blasted the moon like a rocket into space. Is that possible? And what would happen if they could?
If you know me, then you probably already know the answers are 1) no, and b) nothing good, I assure you. So let's set our lasers for stun, get Eagle 1 to the pad, and do the math.
About The Author: Phil Plait is an astronomer and major sci-fi geek. He writes the Bad Astronomy Blog for Discover Magazine and is also the host of the Discovery Channel's science show "Phil Plait's Bad Universe." You can follow him on Twitter at @BadAstronomer.