Construction Equipment for Building on the Moon

By Karl Hanson

1)    Intro

a)     The finest building plans mean nothing without the proper equipment to construct the building. 

b)    Throughout history humans have been able to adapt what they have and know to reach their goal.  Why should this trend slow down?  Like in so many other times the military has the technology before the people but why can it not be

 

2)    Cranes

a)     New robotic cranes for earth construction sites

i)      http://www.cnn.com/TECH/science/9812/11/t_t/robot.crane/index.html

ii)    uses GPS and video feeds to allow conductor to operate machine from anywhere

b)    NASA project

i)      http://university.gsfc.nasa.gov/robotics/2006/project/Team3/index.jsp

ii)    NASA Robotics Academy project dedicated to create a automated space crane

                   

3)    Dozers (image)

a)     Military unmanned ACER

i)      4500 lbs with armor

b)    Caterpillar heads a team with Honeybee Robotics, CRREL, Johnson space center and Kennedy space center.     http://www.hq.usace.army.mil/cepa/pubs/feb05/story4.HTM

i)      4 year 4 million dollar contract with NASA to develop regolith moving equipment for the moon

ii)    Bulldozers and conveyer belts to move materials

 

4)    Excavators (image)

a)     Drills

b)    Bucket and Reel

i)      Explosion to loosen dirt

ii)    Buckets pulled up a ramp by a central station

iii)   Dumps lunar regolith onto conveyer to transport elsewhere

c)     Front end loader (image)

i)      Compact design

(1)  Made by bobcat (13,228 lbs)

(2)  Runs on all hydraulic parts (hydraulic fluid and motors) (will these work in space?)

(3)  Many different attachments

(a)   Auger

(b)  Grapple

(c)   Ripper

(d)  Trenching bucket

                                                                                

5)    Existing Military Designs construction tools can be fitted onto these highly adaptable robots

a)     Foster-Miller TALON  Military robot http://www.mesa-robotics.com/ (image)

i)      60 - 100 lbs

ii)    Possibly have weapons and sensors removed from chassis and shovels/drills installed

b)    MATILDA  http://www.mesa-robotics.com/ (image)

i)      65 lbs

ii)    Tow 475 lbs - lift/store 150 lbs

 

6)    Constructing buildings and shelters with Stereo lithography (rapid 3D prototyping) www.freeluna.com/mdmfg.htm

a)      Robotic rover to concentrate sunlight into to a kind of laser and roll back and forth over an area of the moons surface

b)    Each path melts some of basalt in the lunar surface specific shapes

c)     Each path is a layer of a huge structure

d)    Structure will have to be dug out from underground after complete

i)      Path way could be dug to underground structure

ii)    Underground structure provides more protection from radiation

 

7)    Build v Transport

a)     Build

i)      Use parts from vehicles left by previous missions?

ii)    Use moon rock/surface for counterweights

(1)  Cut down on the weight of the transported machines/parts

 

8)    Power

a)     Batteries (these military devices have 1 day to 1 week battery life)

b)    Recharge with the solar energy produced on moon

c)     Fuel Cells

i)      Caterpillar and 250 kW direct fuel cell

ii)    Developed for use on Earth

 

 

WEB RESOURCES

ARTEMIS Database:  http://www.moonsociety.org/projects/adb/

NASA Grand Challenges:  http://exploration.nasa.gov/announcements/allcategories.html#432

http://www.tlrc.com/ - the originator of the ARTEMIS project works here.

NASAWatch a non-NASA news service:  http://www.nasawatch.com/

http://www.lpi.usra.edu/meetings/roundtable2006/roundtable2006.1st.html

ESA Standards:  http://www.ecss.nl/

Semiconductor Basics:  http://britneyspears.ac/physics/basics/basics.htm

 

 

Space News - http://www.space.com/spacenews/
A weekly magazine from USA. Requires subscription for access. Some headlines are shown without subscription.

 

Space Today Online - http://www.spacetoday.org/
Covering Space from Earth to the Edge of the Universe

 

Astropolitics - http://www.astropolitics.org/
Offers material about a journal to start in 2003, listing editors, call for papers.

 

ATIcourses Space and Aerospace Information Resources - http://www.aticourses.com/space.htm
Good list of space and satellite links and publications compiled for use in ATIcourses technical training programs.

 

NASA Headquarters List of Publications - http://www.hq.nasa.gov/osf/hotlist/

 

 

 

 

Destiny in Space - http://www.suite101.com/welcome.cfm/destiny_space
Includes brief space e-zine and discussion forum.

 

Space Digest International Archives - http://www.islandone.org/SpaceDigest/
Complete archive from Volume 1 to the present.

 

List of Space Publications - http://catalog.com/hitekweb/space.htm#pub
Space and satellite related publications from Applied Technology Institute.

 

Asia Space Report - http://www.asiaspacereport.com/
Provides subscription information and references for a monthly newsletter reporting on the space sector in Asia.

 

Solar System - http://www.thesolarsystem.org/
Summaries and extracts from a book on the solar system and its exploration.

 

 

Space Publications - https://www.spacebusiness.com/
This is a good central space site with many links, a good list of companies and a calendar of meetings