THERE’S little doubt that the Moon’s pull on our imagination is still as strong as it was 50 years ago – the anniversary of the Moon Landings last year really brought that home.

But the story of exploration on the Moon has not ended.

We are at another cross-roads of technological advancement and scientific knowledge… a new era of robotic space exploration – with the Moon at its centre – is upon us!

To unpack what this means, the Royal Scottish Geographical Society (RSGS) is hosting an evening with Professor Mahesh Anand in Galashiels as part of the Inspiring People talks programme.

Professor Anand, who is an expert from the School of Physical Sciences at the Open University, will discuss how the Moon is becoming a favourite target for established and emerging space-faring nations and commercial entities.

He’ll argue that this renaissance in lunar exploration is driven by an increased realisation that the Moon could be the perfect technological testbed for exploring more distant bodies such as Mars.

And he’ll describe how one vision of the future includes humans living on the Moon – the idea that one day a sustainable presence of humans will be based on the lunar surface, exploiting and utilising the Moon’s natural resources to support life 384,400 km from Earth.

Professor Anand said: “I am really looking forward to sharing the scientific knowledge derived from my research with the widest cross-section of the community.

“With my talk Living on the Moon I will describe the progress we have made over the past 50 years in Lunar Science, and discuss why the Moon is the ideal place for establishing longer-term human presence in order to explore the deeper parts of our Solar System.

“In order to realise this ambition, humans will need to perfect the art of ‘living off the land’ which would also promote space exploration in a more responsible and sustainable manner.

“I hope that the audience will be inspired by realising that ‘Space’ is for all – and everyone has a contribution to make.

"These talks will assume even greater significance because of Neil Armstrong’s ancestral link to Langholm in Scotland – and, of course, the RSGS.

“I plan to bring a Moon rock to the talk which the audience can handle,” he added, “which is particularly exciting as it is the largest lunar meteorite in the UK!”

The exciting evening of lunar adventure will be take place on Tuesday, February 25 at Heriot-Watt University, Scottish Borders Campus.

The talk begins at 7.30pm and tickets, costing £10, are available via or on the door. Tickets cost £10.