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NASA to Create a 3D Printed Moon Base that Looks Impressive

NASA and AI Space Factory made LINA, which stands for Lunar Infrastructure Asset. It is a 3D-printed outpost on the Moon that will protect astronauts and important missions.

The project is part of Relevant Environment Additive Construction Technology (REACT), a multi-year effort to develop technologies for building on the moon’s surface in time for the Artemis Mission, which aims to bring people back to the moon. LINA is a step toward expanding civilization to the Earth’s natural satellite and exploring it in a way that doesn’t hurt the planet too much and is good for the environment.

What Cloud Storage means, Types, Ex...
What Cloud Storage means, Types, Examples, Advantages and Disadvantages of Cloud Storage

LINA is a unit that can grow from a single structure to a group of sub-units to make a larger and more important lunar outpost. With 75 square meters for each unit’s living space and 90 square meters for the central staging area, it should be able to house astronauts who go to the Moon in the next 10 years.

It is made to last at least 50 years so that NASA astronauts are safe from things like solar particle events, moonquakes, impacts, and the cold conditions that happen during the lunar night.

The building will be at the South Pole of the Moon, which is called “The Peak of Eternal Light.” There, the sun shines almost all the time, which is great for making solar power, and low-lying areas that are always in the shade are thought to hold water that could be used for water harvesting. In the same way, the building has three separate units that share a courtyard. It also has a photovoltaic tree that captures and uses solar energy directly. The way LINA is positioned gives it its own shade, taking advantage of the lunar landscape to protect it from dangerous solar and cosmic radiation.

The infrastructure on the moon is meant to be 3D printed with a high-performance mix of regolith from the moon and polymer from Earth. LINA’s vaulted ceiling is made by printing the 3D layers at an angle of 60 degrees to the ground, which is different from how most 3D layers are made. The result is a lightweight, optimized, ultra-thin casing that is designed to protect against radiation and the harsh lunar environment by withstanding a 2.7-meter-thick layer of regolith.

Thomas Lipscomb, a NASA materials engineer, is working on a vacuum chamber to test 3D printing inside a vacuum chamber (GMRO) that mimics the environment on the Moon. The test is part of the REACT project, which started when NASA announced in 2020 that it would work with AI SpaceFactory, a company that makes technology for architecture and construction and won NASA’s 3D Printed Habitat Challenge.

With an eye on Mars

The Lunar Infrastructure Asset is a turning point in the resurgence of space exploration that has never been seen before. NASA is working with LINA and the AI Space Factory on MARSHA, a 3D-printed habitat for Mars that is new and different. The prototype was one of five finalists in an international competition to design and build a home for four astronauts on a mission to Mars. It was made of “Martian polymer.”

BIG, in partnership with ICON and SEArch+ (Space Exploration Architecture), has also come up with ideas to help with future exploration of the Moon. In 2017, the government of the United Arab Emirates also announced the start of the Mars Science City project. This is a $140 million research city that will serve as a “viable and realistic model” of how people might live on Mars. 

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