Luna is Earth’s only natural satellite. It is only a quarter of Earth’s diameter, with a gravity of 0.16 g—lighter than many spin stations in the Belt.
Only 384,402 kilometers away from Earth, Luna was the site of humanity’s first landing on another celestial body, as well as the location of Earth’s first interplanetary colony, established in the early 21st century. This first permanent lunar base was a shared military and scientific endeavor, and while elements of both remain, Luna is now much more of a civilian station. Like Earth, Luna is governed by the United Nations, and the approximately one billion inhabitants of Luna are considered full UN citizens. Basic Assistance does not extend to Luna, so its citizens are generally wealthier than most of their counterparts on Earth. Lunar natives tend to have thinner frames, a result of life in the moon’s low gravity, but are not as tall and thin as Belters.
Luna functions as a way station between Earth and the rest of the solar system, and serves as a natural meeting place between residents of the Inner Planets and inhabitants of the Belt and Outers. Due to its lower gravity, Luna is the only body in the Inner System that Belters can easily visit and where they can comfortably remain for any substantial period of time.
Just as on Earth, Luna hosts numerous corporate headquarters as well as respected universities and scientific institutes. It is a hub for commerce and travel, with frequent shuttle flights to and from Earth as well as regular long-haul transport and passenger service to the Outers.
A hostile environment with no atmosphere to speak of, Luna is subject to intense solar radiation and a constant rain of micro-meteors, so surface domes such as can be found on Mars would be a significant safety risk. As a result, virtually all of Luna’s habitats and infrastructure are located underground, though view screens throughout the station serve as “windows” offering views of the lunar surface. Only Luna’s spaceport and access ports to the subterranean tunnels are above ground.
As Earth’s oldest non-terrestrial settlement, much of Luna Station is old and worn, though of course newer construction was added in the intervening centuries. A unique feature of Luna is the stink of gunpowder in the air that every visitor notices when they arrive, the result of lunar dust so fine it passes right through air filters.
Luna's space port is located in the lunar city, Lovell. Lovell is home to the New Hague United Nations facilities. Outer Planets Command and the Outer Planets Governing Board are both located on Luna's surface.
Luna is a highly symbolic location: as a meeting spot for those who have chosen to leave the gravity well to meet with their family back on Earth, it is a potential icon for peaceful coexistence between the Inners and Outers.
Although heavily developed and populated, much of the structures are underground, and therefore not visible from space. The underground location protects residents from micro-meteoroid impacts and the effects of cosmic and solar radiation. Large ultra-high-definition viewscreens located throughout the Luna facilities simulate windows looking out upon the lunar surface.
|Bush shipyards||orbital shipyards|
|Mao Station||Private orbital station|