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Elements for a Sustainable Lunar Colony

Elements for a Sustainable Lunar Colony

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Galactic Empire of the Moon - http://www.marcusmoon2022.org/
Sustainable, Green Lunar Colonization by 2022
Galactic Empire of the Moon - http://www.marcusmoon2022.org/
Sustainable, Green Lunar Colonization by 2022

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Categories:Topics, Art & Design
Published by: Marcus Skookumchuck Vannini on Apr 26, 2010
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07/04/2010

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 ELEMENTS FOR A SUSTAINABLE LUNAR COLONYIN THE SOUTH POLAR REGION
Khaled Al-Jammaz
1
, Alejandro Diaz
2
, Felipe Hernandez
3
, Sreemathi Iyer 
4
, Carlos Ortiz
5
,Bryan Richardson
6
, Miguel Rodriguez
7
, George Whitesides
8
,Madhu Thangavelu
§
, Faculty Adviser, School Of Architecture and School Of EngineeringUniversity Of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA 90089-1191 
Abstract
Some elements for building a sustainablelunar colony in the South Polar Region are presented.Two areas of interest are the near Earth facingMalapert Mountain ranges at 85 degrees parallel and0 degrees longitude and the Shivashakti-SaraswathyPlateau emanating from the west-southwest rim of Shackleton crater at the South Pole. It is suggestedthat the first colony projects be initiated at Malapertin direct visual contact with the Earth and that thesecond phase of development be carried out aroundShackleton crater located at the South Pole.Site-specific systems studied include thedevelopment of cis-lunar logistics andcommunications and a global as well as a localenvironmental and regional master plan for lunar development with particular attention paid to theimpact of developmental activity on the fragile lunar surface environment. Architectural concepts for facilities and interiors for crew are addressed. Theyinclude large spaces for work and recreation as wellas private quarters for single and family dwellings.Elements are based both above and below the lunar surface. A concept for building a dual use solar stormshelter and emergency cache facility is included.Long term missions in space have yet to beundertaken. All analogous evidence from deepisolation facilities here on Earth indicate that ___________________________________________ 
Text Copyright
©
2001 by The Space Frontier Foundation. Allrights reserved. Images published with permission of USC andauthors.
1-8
Arch 599-Seminar student in Extraterrestrial and ExtremeEnvironment Habitat Design Team Project, USC Architecture,Spring 2001. Fig. 1.
§
Madhu Thangavelu, Faculty Adviser, School of Architectureand the Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering,School Of Engineering, University Of Southern California.
 Fig 1. USC Space Architecture Team at CalearthInstitute Lunar Colony Site In Hesperia, California.human beings are indeed the fragile, weak link in theotherwise resilient hard technology drivenarchitectures that are proposed for such activity.Cultural and religious activity may offer yetanother avenue to relieve the stress associated withisolation and the fear of being in an extremelyconstrained, alien environment. An architecturalconcept for a lunar mosque is presented.Fig 2. A South Polar Lunar Colony
 
Lunar Environmental and Regional Planning
Planning of human settlements on the Moonmust involve considerations that are novel to Earth- based models.Particular attention must be paid to sunlightexposure and direct visual contact with the Earth.Certain high elevation sites in the lunar polar regionsoffer almost continuous access to sunlight(power) anda direct line of sight of planet Earth as well.Furthermore, the region also presents permanentlyshadowed “cold trap” areas that might harbor diffusewater-ice, possibly deposited there through naturalcometary bombardment over geological time. Thecombination of above resources, if provedconclusively, would make the polar regions a choicelocation for early lunar settlements. A lunar colony insuch a setting is depicted in Fig. 2.The South Polar Region around the Aitken basin also offers rugged terrain with dramatic vistasthat are peculiar to the southern lunar highlands. Thecontrasting relief seen in peaks and valleys therewould be ideal for locating broadband laser communications equipment and relay stations,allowing the development of a reliable network withminimum physical infrastructure. Fig. 3 shows amosaic of the region.Fig. 3. Lunar South Polar Region MosaicLunar regional and site planning and landmanagement program must also consider issues suchas topography, zoning for spacecraft landing and lift-off operations and base fly-over trajectories, annualsurface insolation, diurnal temperature variations andeffects on structures, waste management, lunar baseoperations ecological environment impact studies andenvironmental conservation.Issues such as lunar landscape preservationareas, orbital pollution and both immediate andcumulative effects from logistics support vehiclesoperation and their mitigation, cislunar and lunar orbital debris management, dust and off gassingcontamination need to be addressed. Plate onfollowing page shows location of Phase I MalapertBase and Phase II Shackleton Ridge Colony.Schematic facilities layout at Malapert Mountain isalso shown. It is planned to use the tallest peaks at both sites for solar photovoltaic power generation.Options include crowning the peak with blankets of amorphous silicon solar panels or erecting imposing,kilometer tall conical tower structures for hangingcurtains of high efficiency solar arrays. See next page.
Solar Observatory System(S.O.S.)
The S.O.S. framework will be represented bya series of Radio and optical telescopes connectedtogether with reliable communications links as an“observation system”, including interferometricinstruments, as needed, which will alert the MoonColonists to react on short notice in case of imminentdangerous solar particle events or hazardous micrometeoritic activity.The Components:
 
1) Stationary Radio telescopes and Opticaltelescopes:
 
Earth based, Moon Based, and onand around other celestial bodies
 
2) Orbital Radio telescopes and Opticaltelescopes: Spacecrafts in different orbits inorder to cover a wide range of observation,this can include Earth, Moon and other Solar System orbits.In this phase 1 study, the first Lunar Based Solar Telescope is presented as a spacecraft that is remotelylanded in a 100 ft. diameter crater, close to theColony Site in the Malapert / Shackleton Area at theSouth Polar Region of the Moon.A folded optics reflecting telescope, with astationary 24” aperture primary mirror is placedwithin the spacecraft at the end of a deployable lightstructure truss. A heliostat deployed on the other endof this truss /extendable boom tracks the sun. Theinstrument uses laser beams and microwave radiocommunication devices to hook up to the base and theother SOS elements. See Fig. 4.
 
 Fig.4. Phase I Solar Observatory System Elements Deployed at Shackleton Base in thelunar South Pole contains a solar telescope and a micro meteoritic early warning device.
 A Lunar Colony Concept
The lunar environment poses uniquechallenges for architectural design of large, fullyenclosed spaces. The vacuum of space is compounded by large temperature variations, lethal radiation andmicro meteoritic activity.However, the rugged terrain, the contrastingrelief presented by the very deep valleys and peaks of the lunar South Polar Region offer unique exciting possibilities to build structures upon.The aim of our design is to keep theinhabitants as comfortable and productive during thelong periods associated with extended durationmissions – more than a year at a time. Since suchmissions have not yet been attempted, we can onlyspeculate on what these habitats and spaces mightlook like. We hope that a new rationale for lunar settlements might evolve from these studies.Based in analogous experiences here on Earthincluding those in the Antarctic and on deep-sea oilrigs, we attempt to derive some patterns that may beapplied to lunar dwellings. Conceptual design,construction methods merits and limitations arediscussed. Several alternative concepts were exploredand results presented. Fig.5. depicts the exterior massing of a lunar colony that relies heavily on in situresource utilization(ISRU) for construction materialsand methods.Fig. 5. A concept for a south polar highlands lunar colony
The First Mosque on the Moon
Architecture and engineering of structures to be built in space often confines its emphasis to the physical and scientific needs of the humaninhabitants. A critical element of long term humansurvival and well being is the need to nourish andnurture the human soul and spirit. Faith, worship and prayer are inseparable values and beliefs associatedwith humanity, culture and civilization.

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