WorldWideScience

Sample records for lunar regolith simulant

  1. 2007 Lunar Regolith Simulant Workshop Overview

    Science.gov (United States)

    McLemore, Carole A.; Fikes, John C.; Howell, Joe T.

    2007-01-01

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) vision has as a cornerstone, the establishment of an Outpost on the Moon. This Lunar Outpost will eventually provide the necessary planning, technology development, and training for a manned mission to Mars in the future. As part of the overall activity, NASA is conducting Earth-based research and advancing technologies to a Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 6 maturity under the Exploration Technology Development Program that will be incorporated into the Constellation Project as well as other projects. All aspects of the Lunar environment, including the Lunar regolith and its properties, are important in understanding the long-term impacts to hardware, scientific instruments, and humans prior to returning to the Moon and living on the Moon. With the goal of reducing risk to humans and hardware and increasing mission success on the Lunar surface, it is vital that terrestrial investigations including both development and verification testing have access to Lunar-like environments. The Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) is supporting this endeavor by developing, characterizing, and producing Lunar simulants in addition to analyzing existing simulants for appropriate applications. A Lunar Regolith Simulant Workshop was conducted by MSFC in Huntsville, Alabama, in October 2007. The purpose of the Workshop was to bring together simulant developers, simulant users, and program and project managers from ETDP and Constellation with the goals of understanding users' simulant needs and their applications. A status of current simulant developments such as the JSC-1A (Mare Type Simulant) and the NASA/U.S. Geological Survey Lunar Highlands-Type Pilot Simulant (NU-LHT-1 M) was provided. The method for evaluating simulants, performed via Figures of Merit (FoMs) algorithms, was presented and a demonstration was provided. The four FoM properties currently being assessed are: size, shape, density, and composition. Some of the

  2. Thermal Properties of Lunar Regolith Simulants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Street, Kenneth; Ray, Chandra; Rickman, Doug

    2010-01-01

    Various high temperature chemical processes have been developed to extract oxygen and metals from lunar regolith. These processes are tested using terrestrial analogues of the regolith. But all practical terrestrial analogs contain H2O and/or OH-, the presence of which has substantial impact on important system behaviors. We have undertaken studies of lunar regolith simulants to determine the limits of the simulants to validate key components for human survivability during sustained presence on the moon. Differential Thermal Analysis (DTA) yields information on phase transitions and melting temperatures. Themo-Gravimetric Analysis (TGA) with mass spectrometric (MS) determination of evolved gas species yields chemical information on various oxygenated volatiles (water, carbon dioxide, sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides and phosphorus oxides) and their evolution temperature profiles. The DTA and TGAMS studies included JSC-1A fine, NU-LHT-2M and its proposed feed stocks: anorthosite; dunite; HQ (high quality) glass and the norite from which HQ glass is produced. Fig 1 is a data profile for anorthosite. The DTA (Fig 1a) indicates exothermic transitions at 355 and 490 C and endothermic transitions at 970 and 1235 C. Below the 355 C transition, water (Molecular Weight, MW, 18 in Fig 1c) is lost accounting for approximately 0.1% mass loss due to water removal (Fig 1b). Just above 490 C a second type of water is lost, presumably bound in lattices of secondary minerals. Between 490 and the 970 transition other volatile oxides are lost including those of hydrogen (third water type), carbon (MW = 44), sulfur (MW = 64 and 80), nitrogen (MW 30 and 46) and possibly phosphorus (MW = 79, 95 or 142). Peaks at MW = 35 and 19 may be attributable to loss of chlorine and fluorine respectively. Negative peaks in the NO (MW = 30) and oxygen (MW = 32) MS profiles may indicate the production of NO2 (MW = 46). Because so many compounds are volatilized in this temperature range quantification of

  3. Mechanical properties of lunar regolith and lunar soil simulant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perkins, Steven W.

    1989-01-01

    Through the Surveyor 3 and 7, and Apollo 11-17 missions a knowledge of the mechanical properties of Lunar regolith were gained. These properties, including material cohesion, friction, in-situ density, grain-size distribution and shape, and porosity, were determined by indirect means of trenching, penetration, and vane shear testing. Several of these properties were shown to be significantly different from those of terrestrial soils, such as an interlocking cohesion and tensile strength formed in the absence of moisture and particle cementation. To characterize the strength and deformation properties of Lunar regolith experiments have been conducted on a lunar soil simulant at various initial densities, fabric arrangements, and composition. These experiments included conventional triaxial compression and extension, direct tension, and combined tension-shear. Experiments have been conducted at low levels of effective confining stress. External conditions such as membrane induced confining stresses, end platten friction and material self weight have been shown to have a dramatic effect on the strength properties at low levels of confining stress. The solution has been to treat these external conditions and the specimen as a full-fledged boundary value problem rather than the idealized elemental cube of mechanics. Centrifuge modeling allows for the study of Lunar soil-structure interaction problems. In recent years centrifuge modeling has become an important tool for modeling processes that are dominated by gravity and for verifying analysis procedures and studying deformation and failure modes. Centrifuge modeling is well established for terrestrial enginering and applies equally as well to Lunar engineering. A brief review of the experiments is presented in graphic and outline form.

  4. Echo simulation of lunar penetrating radar: based on a model of inhomogeneous multilayer lunar regolith structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dai Shun; Su Yan; Xiao Yuan; Feng Jian-Qing; Xing Shu-Guo; Ding Chun-Yu

    2014-01-01

    Lunar Penetrating Radar (LPR) based on the time domain Ultra-Wideband (UWB) technique onboard China's Chang'e-3 (CE-3) rover, has the goal of investigating the lunar subsurface structure and detecting the depth of lunar regolith. An inhomogeneous multi-layer microwave transfer inverse-model is established. The dielectric constant of the lunar regolith, the velocity of propagation, the reflection, refraction and transmission at interfaces, and the resolution are discussed. The model is further used to numerically simulate and analyze temporal variations in the echo obtained from the LPR attached on CE-3's rover, to reveal the location and structure of lunar regolith. The thickness of the lunar regolith is calculated by a comparison between the simulated radar B-scan images based on the model and the detected result taken from the CE-3 lunar mission. The potential scientific return from LPR echoes taken from the landing region is also discussed

  5. Echo simulation of lunar penetrating radar: based on a model of inhomogeneous multilayer lunar regolith structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dai, Shun; Su, Yan; Xiao, Yuan; Feng, Jian-Qing; Xing, Shu-Guo; Ding, Chun-Yu

    2014-12-01

    Lunar Penetrating Radar (LPR) based on the time domain Ultra-Wideband (UWB) technique onboard China's Chang'e-3 (CE-3) rover, has the goal of investigating the lunar subsurface structure and detecting the depth of lunar regolith. An inhomogeneous multi-layer microwave transfer inverse-model is established. The dielectric constant of the lunar regolith, the velocity of propagation, the reflection, refraction and transmission at interfaces, and the resolution are discussed. The model is further used to numerically simulate and analyze temporal variations in the echo obtained from the LPR attached on CE-3's rover, to reveal the location and structure of lunar regolith. The thickness of the lunar regolith is calculated by a comparison between the simulated radar B-scan images based on the model and the detected result taken from the CE-3 lunar mission. The potential scientific return from LPR echoes taken from the landing region is also discussed.

  6. [Evaluation of Cellular Effects Caused by Lunar Regolith Simulant Including Fine Particles].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horie, Masanori; Miki, Takeo; Honma, Yoshiyuki; Aoki, Shigeru; Morimoto, Yasuo

    2015-06-01

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration has announced a plan to establish a manned colony on the surface of the moon, and our country, Japan, has declared its participation. The surface of the moon is covered with soil called lunar regolith, which includes fine particles. It is possible that humans will inhale lunar regolith if it is brought into the spaceship. Therefore, an evaluation of the pulmonary effects caused by lunar regolith is important for exploration of the moon. In the present study, we examine the cellular effects of lunar regolith simulant, whose components are similar to those of lunar regolith. We focused on the chemical component and particle size in particular. The regolith simulant was fractionated to lunar regolith simulant such as cell membrane damage, induction of oxidative stress and proinflammatory effect.

  7. Lunar regolith stratigraphy analysis based on the simulation of lunar penetrating radar signals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Jialong; Xu, Yi; Zhang, Xiaoping; Tang, Zesheng

    2017-11-01

    The thickness of lunar regolith is an important index of evaluating the quantity of lunar resources such as 3He and relative geologic ages. Lunar penetrating radar (LPR) experiment of Chang'E-3 mission provided an opportunity of in situ lunar subsurface structure measurement in the northern mare imbrium area. However, prior work on analyzing LPR data obtained quite different conclusions of lunar regolith structure mainly because of the missing of clear interface reflectors in radar image. In this paper, we utilized finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) method and three models of regolith structures with different rock density, number of layers, shapes of interfaces, and etc. to simulate the LPR signals for the interpretation of radar image. The simulation results demonstrate that the scattering signals caused by numerous buried rocks in the regolith can mask the horizontal reflectors, and the die-out of radar echo does not indicate the bottom of lunar regolith layer and data processing such as migration method could recover some of the subsurface information but also result in fake signals. Based on analysis of simulation results, we conclude that LPR results uncover the subsurface layered structure containing the rework zone with multiple ejecta blankets of small crater, the ejecta blanket of Chang'E-3 crater, and the transition zone and estimate the thickness of the detected layer is about 3.25 m.

  8. Sputtering of Lunar Regolith Simulant by Protons and Multicharged Heavy Ions at Solar Wind Energies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Meyer, Fred W.; Harris, Peter R.; Taylor, C.N.; Meyer, Harry M. III; Barghouty, N.; Adams, J. Jr.

    2011-01-01

    We report preliminary results on sputtering of a lunar regolith simulant at room temperature by singly and multiply charged solar wind ions using quadrupole and time-of-flight (TOF) mass spectrometry approaches. Sputtering of the lunar regolith by solar-wind heavy ions may be an important particle source that contributes to the composition of the lunar exosphere, and is a possible mechanism for lunar surface ageing and compositional modification. The measurements were performed in order to assess the relative sputtering efficiency of protons, which are the dominant constituent of the solar wind, and less abundant heavier multicharged solar wind constituents, which have higher physical sputtering yields than same-velocity protons, and whose sputtering yields may be further enhanced due to potential sputtering. Two different target preparation approaches using JSC-1A AGGL lunar regolith simulant are described and compared using SEM and XPS surface analysis.

  9. Electrical stress and strain in lunar regolith simulants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, J.; Richard, D.; Davis, S.

    2011-11-01

    Experiments to entrain dust with electrostatic and fluid-dynamic forces result in particulate clouds of aggregates rather than individual dust grains. This is explained within the framework of Griffith-flaw theory regarding the comminution/breakage of weak solids. Physical and electrical inhomogeneities in powders are equivalent to microcracks in solids insofar as they facilitate failure at stress risers. Electrical charging of powders induces bulk sample stresses similar to mechanical stresses experienced by strong solids, depending on the nature of the charging. A powder mass therefore "breaks" into clumps rather than separating into individual dust particles. This contrasts with the expectation that electrical forces on the Moon will eject a submicron population of dust from the regolith into the exosphere. A lunar regolith will contain physical and electrostatic inhomogeneities similar to those in most charged powders.

  10. Mass Production of Mature Lunar Regolith Simulant, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — As NASA prepares for future exploration activities on the Moon, there is a growing need to develop higher fidelity lunar soil simulants that can accurately reproduce...

  11. Numerical Simulations of the Lunar Penetrating Radar and Investigations of the Geological Structures of the Lunar Regolith Layer at the Chang’E 3 Landing Site

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chunyu Ding

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available In the process of lunar exploration, and specifically when studying lunar surface structure and thickness, the established lunar regolith model is usually a uniform and ideal structural model, which is not well-suited to describe the real structure of the lunar regolith layer. The present study aims to explain the geological structural information contained in the channel 2 LPR (lunar penetrating radar data. In this paper, the random medium theory and Apollo drilling core data are used to construct a modeling method based on discrete heterogeneous random media, and the simulation data are processed and collected by the electromagnetic numerical method FDTD (finite-difference time domain. When comparing the LPR data with the simulated data, the heterogeneous random medium model is more consistent with the actual distribution of the media in the lunar regolith layer. It is indicated that the interior structure of the lunar regolith layer at the landing site is not a pure lunar regolith medium but rather a regolith-rock mixture, with rocks of different sizes and shapes. Finally, several reasons are given to explain the formation of the geological structures of the lunar regolith layer at the Chang’E 3 landing site, as well as the possible geological stratification structure.

  12. Electrostatic Power Generation from Negatively Charged, Simulated Lunar Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Sang H.; King, Glen C.; Kim, Hyun-Jung; Park, Yeonjoon

    2010-01-01

    Research was conducted to develop an electrostatic power generator for future lunar missions that facilitate the utilization of lunar resources. The lunar surface is known to be negatively charged from the constant bombardment of electrons and protons from the solar wind. The resulting negative electrostatic charge on the dust particles, in the lunar vacuum, causes them to repel each other minimizing the potential. The result is a layer of suspended dust about one meter above the lunar surface. This phenomenon was observed by both Clementine and Surveyor spacecrafts. During the Apollo 17 lunar landing, the charged dust was a major hindrance, as it was attracted to the astronauts' spacesuits, equipment, and the lunar buggies. The dust accumulated on the spacesuits caused reduced visibility for the astronauts, and was unavoidably transported inside the spacecraft where it caused breathing irritation [1]. In the lunar vacuum, the maximum charge on the particles can be extremely high. An article in the journal "Nature", titled "Moon too static for astronauts?" (Feb 2, 2007) estimates that the lunar surface is charged with up to several thousand volts [2]. The electrostatic power generator was devised to alleviate the hazardous effects of negatively charged lunar soil by neutralizing the charged particles through capacitive coupling and thereby simultaneously harnessing power through electric charging [3]. The amount of power generated or collected is dependent on the areal coverage of the device and hovering speed over the lunar soil surface. A thin-film array of capacitors can be continuously charged and sequentially discharged using a time-differentiated trigger discharge process to produce a pulse train of discharge for DC mode output. By controlling the pulse interval, the DC mode power can be modulated for powering devices and equipment. In conjunction with a power storage system, the electrostatic power generator can be a power source for a lunar rover or other

  13. Improved Lunar and Martian Regolith Simulant Production, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA's new exploration initiative created immediate need for materials science and technology research to enable safe human travel and work on future lunar or...

  14. Improved Lunar and Martian Regolith Simulant Production, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The technical objective of the Phase II project is to provide a more complete investigation of the long-term needs of the simulant community based on the updated...

  15. Lunar Regolith Particle Shape Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiekhaefer, Rebecca; Hardy, Sandra; Rickman, Douglas; Edmunson, Jennifer

    2013-01-01

    Future engineering of structures and equipment on the lunar surface requires significant understanding of particle characteristics of the lunar regolith. Nearly all sediment characteristics are influenced by particle shape; therefore a method of quantifying particle shape is useful both in lunar and terrestrial applications. We have created a method to quantify particle shape, specifically for lunar regolith, using image processing. Photomicrographs of thin sections of lunar core material were obtained under reflected light. Three photomicrographs were analyzed using ImageJ and MATLAB. From the image analysis measurements for area, perimeter, Feret diameter, orthogonal Feret diameter, Heywood factor, aspect ratio, sieve diameter, and sieve number were recorded. Probability distribution functions were created from the measurements of Heywood factor and aspect ratio.

  16. The Dust Management Project: Characterizing Lunar Environments and Dust, Developing Regolith Mitigation Technology and Simulants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hyatt, Mark J.; Straka, Sharon A.

    2010-01-01

    A return to the Moon to extend human presence, pursue scientific activities, use the Moon to prepare for future human missions to Mars, and expand Earth?s economic sphere, will require investment in developing new technologies and capabilities to achieve affordable and sustainable human exploration. From the operational experience gained and lessons learned during the Apollo missions, conducting long-term operations in the lunar environment will be a particular challenge, given the difficulties presented by the unique physical properties and other characteristics of lunar regolith, including dust. The Apollo missions and other lunar explorations have identified significant lunar dust-related problems that will challenge future mission success. Comprised of regolith particles ranging in size from tens of nanometers to microns, lunar dust is a manifestation of the complex interaction of the lunar soil with multiple mechanical, electrical, and gravitational effects. The environmental and anthropogenic factors effecting the perturbation, transport, and deposition of lunar dust must be studied in order to mitigate it?s potentially harmful effects on exploration systems and human explorers. The Dust Management Project (DMP) is tasked with the evaluation of lunar dust effects, assessment of the resulting risks, and development of mitigation and management strategies and technologies related to Exploration Systems architectures. To this end, the DMP supports the overall goal of the Exploration Technology Development Program (ETDP) of addressing the relevant high priority technology needs of multiple elements within the Constellation Program (CxP) and sister ETDP projects. Project scope, plans, and accomplishments will be presented.

  17. Experimental Measurements of Heat Transfer through a Lunar Regolith Simulant in a Vibro-Fluidized Reactor Oven

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nayagam, Vedha; Berger, Gordon M.; Sacksteder, Kurt R.; Paz, Aaron

    2012-01-01

    Extraction of mission consumable resources such as water and oxygen from the planetary environment provides valuable reduction in launch-mass and potentially extends the mission duration. Processing of lunar regolith for resource extraction necessarily involves heating and chemical reaction of solid material with processing gases. Vibrofluidization is known to produce effective mixing and control of flow within granular media. In this study we present experimental results for vibrofluidized heat transfer in lunar regolith simulants (JSC-1 and JSC-1A) heated up to 900 C. The results show that the simulant bed height has a significant influence on the vibration induced flow field and heat transfer rates. A taller bed height leads to a two-cell circulation pattern whereas a single-cell circulation was observed for a shorter height. Lessons learned from these test results should provide insight into efficient design of future robotic missions involving In-Situ Resource Utilization.

  18. Numerical Simulations of the Lunar Penetrating Radar and Investigations of the Geological Structures of the Lunar Regolith Layer at the Chang’E 3 Landing Site

    OpenAIRE

    Ding, Chunyu; Su, Yan; Xing, Shuguo; Dai, Shun; Xiao, Yuan; Feng, Jianqing; Liu, Danqing; Li, Chunlai

    2017-01-01

    In the process of lunar exploration, and specifically when studying lunar surface structure and thickness, the established lunar regolith model is usually a uniform and ideal structural model, which is not well-suited to describe the real structure of the lunar regolith layer. The present study aims to explain the geological structural information contained in the channel 2 LPR (lunar penetrating radar) data. In this paper, the random medium theory and Apollo drilling core data are used to co...

  19. Radiation Shielding of Lunar Regolith/Polyethylene Composites and Lunar Regolith/Water Mixtures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Quincy F.; Gersey, Brad; Wilkins, Richard; Zhou, Jianren

    2011-01-01

    Space radiation is a complex mixed field of ionizing radiation that can pose hazardous risks to sophisticated electronics and humans. Mission planning for lunar exploration and long duration habitat construction will face tremendous challenges of shielding against various types of space radiation in an attempt to minimize the detrimental effects it may have on materials, electronics, and humans. In late 2009, the Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) discovered that water content in lunar regolith found in certain areas on the moon can be up to 5.6 +/-2.8 weight percent (wt%) [A. Colaprete, et. al., Science, Vol. 330, 463 (2010). ]. In this work, shielding studies were performed utilizing ultra high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) and aluminum, both being standard space shielding materials, simulated lunar regolith/ polyethylene composites, and simulated lunar regolith mixed with UHMWPE particles and water. Based on the LCROSS findings, radiation shielding experiments were conducted to test for shielding efficiency of regolith/UHMWPE/water mixtures with various percentages of water to compare relative shielding characteristics of these materials. One set of radiation studies were performed using the proton synchrotron at the Loma Linda Medical University where high energy protons similar to those found on the surface of the moon can be generated. A similar experimental protocol was also used at a high energy spalation neutron source at Los Alamos Neutron Science Center (LANSCE). These experiments studied the shielding efficiency against secondary neutrons, another major component of space radiation field. In both the proton and neutron studies, shielding efficiency was determined by utilizing a tissue equivalent proportional counter (TEPC) behind various thicknesses of shielding composite panels or mixture materials. Preliminary results from these studies indicated that adding 2 wt% water to regolith particles could increase shielding of

  20. Analysis and Testing of Load Characteristics for Rotary-Percussive Drilling of Lunar Rock Simulant with a Lunar Regolith Coring Bit

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peng Li

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Based on an optimized lunar regolith coring bit (LRCB configuration, the load characteristics of rotary-percussive drilling of lunar rock simulant in a laboratory environment are analyzed to determine the effects of the drilling parameters (the rotational velocity, the penetration rate, and the percussion frequency on the drilling load. The process of rotary drilling into lunar rock using an LRCB is modeled as an interaction between an elemental blade and the rock. The rock’s fracture mechanism during different stages of the percussive mechanism is analyzed to create a load forecasting model for the cutting and percussive fracturing of rock using an elemental blade. Finally, a model of the load on the LRCB is obtained from the analytic equation for the bit’s cutting blade distribution; experimental verification of the rotary-impact load characteristics for lunar rock simulant with different parameters is performed. The results show that the penetrations per revolution (PPR are the primary parameter influencing the drilling load. When the PPR are fixed, increasing the percussion frequency reduces the drilling load on the rock. Additionally, the variation pattern of the drilling load of the bit is in agreement with that predicted by the theoretical model. This provides a research basis for subsequent optimization of the drilling procedure and online recognition of the drilling process.

  1. Leak Rate Performance of Silicone Elastomer O-Rings Contaminated with JSC-1A Lunar Regolith Simulant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oravec, Heather Ann; Daniels, Christopher C.

    2014-01-01

    Contamination of spacecraft components with planetary and foreign object debris is a growing concern. Face seals separating the spacecraft cabin from the debris filled environment are particularly susceptible; if the seal becomes contaminated there is potential for decreased performance, mission failure, or catastrophe. In this study, silicone elastomer O-rings were contaminated with JSC- 1A lunar regolith and their leak rate performance was evaluated. The leak rate values of contaminated O-rings at four levels of seal compression were compared to those of as-received, uncontaminated, O-rings. The results showed a drastic increase in leak rate after contamination. JSC-1A contaminated O-rings lead to immeasurably high leak rate values for all levels of compression except complete closure. Additionally, a mechanical method of simulant removal was examined. In general, this method returned the leak rate to as-received values.

  2. SSERVI Analog Regolith Simulant Testbed Facility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minafra, J.; Schmidt, G. K.

    2016-12-01

    SSERVI's goals include supporting planetary researchers within NASA, other government agencies; private sector and hardware developers; competitors in focused prize design competitions; and academic sector researchers. The SSERVI Analog Regolith Simulant Testbed provides opportunities for research scientists and engineers to study the effects of regolith analog testbed research in the planetary exploration field. This capability is essential to help to understand the basic effects of continued long-term exposure to a simulated analog test environment. The current facility houses approximately eight tons of JSC-1A lunar regolith simulant in a test bin consisting of a 4 meter by 4 meter area. SSERVI provides a bridge between several groups, joining together researchers from: 1) scientific and exploration communities, 2) multiple disciplines across a wide range of planetary sciences, and 3) domestic and international communities and partnerships. This testbed provides a means of consolidating the tasks of acquisition, storage and safety mitigation in handling large quantities of regolith simulant Facility hardware and environment testing scenarios include, but are not limited to the following; Lunar surface mobility, Dust exposure and mitigation, Regolith handling and excavation, Solar-like illumination, Lunar surface compaction profile, Lofted dust, Mechanical properties of lunar regolith, and Surface features (i.e. grades and rocks) Numerous benefits vary from easy access to a controlled analog regolith simulant testbed, and planetary exploration activities at NASA Research Park, to academia and expanded commercial opportunities in California's Silicon Valley, as well as public outreach and education opportunities.

  3. Solar Wind Implantation into Lunar Regolith II: Monte Carlo Simulations of Hydrogen Retention in a Surface with Defects and the Hydrogen (H, H2) Exosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, O. J.; Farrell, W. M.; Killen, R. M.; Hurley, D. M.

    2018-01-01

    Recently, the near-infrared observations of the OH veneer on the lunar surface by the Moon Mineralogy Mapper (M3) have been refined to constrain the OH content to 500-750 parts per million (ppm). The observations indicate diurnal variations in OH up to 200 ppm possibly linked to warmer surface temperatures at low latitude. We examine the M3 observations using a statistical mechanics approach to model the diffusion of implanted H in the lunar regolith. We present results from Monte Carlo simulations of the diffusion of implanted solar wind H atoms and the subsequently derived H and H2 exospheres.

  4. Detecting Volatiles Deep in the Lunar Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crotts, A.; Heggy, E.; Ciarletti, V.; Colaprete, A.; Moghaddam, M.; Siegler, M. A.

    2015-12-01

    There is increasing theoretical and empirical evidence, from the Apollo era and after, of volatiles deep in the lunar interior, in the crust and deeper, both hydrogen-rich and otherwise. This comes in the form of fire fountain samples from Apollo 15 and Apollo 17, of hydrated minerals excavated by impacts which reach the base of the lunar crust e.g., crater Bullialdus, of hydration of apatite and other minerals, as well as predictions of a water-concentrated layer along with the KREEP material at the base of the lunar crust. We discuss how the presence of these volatiles might be directly explored. In particular water vapor molecules percolating to the surface through lunar regolith might be expected to stick and freeze into the regolith, at depths of several meters depending on the regolith temperature profile, porosity and particle size distribution, quantities that are not well known beyond two meters depth. To explore these depths in the regolith we use and propose several modes of penetrating radar. We will present results using the SELENE/Kaguya's Lunar Sounding RADAR (LSR) to probe the bulk volatile dielectric and loss structure properties of the regolith in various locations, both within permanently shadowed regions (PSRs) and without, and within neutron suppression regions (NSRs) as traced by epithermal neutrons and without. We also propose installation of ground penetrating RADAR (GPR) on a roving lunar platform that should be able to probe between 0.2 and 1.6 GHz, which will provide a probe of the entire depth of the lunar regolith as well as a high-resolution (about 4 cm FWHM) probe of the upper meter or two of the lunar soil, where other probes of volatiles such as epithermal neutron absorption or drilling might be employed. We discuss predictions for what kinds of volatile density profiles might be distinguished in this way, and whether these will be detected from orbit as NSRs, whether these must be restricted to PSRs, and how these might appear in

  5. Simultaneous measurement of temperature and emissivity of lunar regolith simulant using dual-channel millimeter-wave radiometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCloy, J S; Sundaram, S K; Matyas, J; Woskov, P P

    2011-05-01

    Millimeter wave (MMW) radiometry can be used for simultaneous measurement of emissivity and temperature of materials under extreme environments (high temperature, pressure, and corrosive environments). The state-of-the-art dual channel MMW passive radiometer with active interferometric capabilities at 137 GHz described here allows for radiometric measurements of sample temperature and emissivity up to at least 1600 °C with simultaneous measurement of sample surface dynamics. These capabilities have been used to demonstrate dynamic measurement of melting of powders of simulated lunar regolith and static measurement of emissivity of solid samples. The paper presents the theoretical background and basis for the dual-receiver system, describes the hardware in detail, and demonstrates the data analysis. Post-experiment analysis of emissivity versus temperature allows further extraction from the radiometric data of millimeter wave viewing beam coupling factors, which provide corroboratory evidence to the interferometric data of the process dynamics observed. These results show the promise of the MMW system for extracting quantitative and qualitative process parameters for industrial processes and access to real-time dynamics of materials behavior in extreme environments.

  6. [Possibility of exacerbation of allergy by lunar regolith].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horie, Masanori; Kambara, Tatsunori; Kuroda, Etsushi; Miki, Takeo; Honma, Yoshiyuki; Aoki, Shigeru; Morimoto, Yasuo

    2012-09-01

    Japan, U.S.A. and other foreign space agencies have plans for the construction of a lunar base and long-term stay of astronauts on the moon. The surface of the moon is covered by a thick layer of soil that includes fine particles called "lunar regolith", which is formed by meteorite impact and space weathering. Risk assessment of particulate matter on the moon is important for astronauts working in microgravity on the moon. However, there are few investigations about the biological influences of lunar regolith. Especially, there is no investigation about allergic activity to lunar regolith. The main chemical components of lunar regolith are SiO2, Al2O3, CaO, FeO, etc. Of particular interest, approximately 50% of lunar regolith consists of SiO2. There is a report that the astronauts felt hay fever-like symptoms from the inhalation of the lunar regolith. Yellow sand, whose chemical components are similar to lunar regolith, enhances allergenic reactions, suggesting the possibility that lunar regolith has an adjuvant-like activity. Although intraperitoneal administration of lunar regolith with ovalbumin to mouse did not show enhancement of allergenic reactions, further evaluation of lunar regolith's potential to exacerbate the effects of allergies is essential for development of the moon.

  7. Distribution of Amino Acids in Lunar Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elsila, J. E.; Callahan, M. P.; Glavin, D. P.; Dworkin, J. P.; Noble, S. K.; Gibson, E. K., Jr.

    2014-01-01

    One of the most eagerly studied questions upon initial return of lunar samples was whether significant amounts of organic compounds, including amino acids, were present. Analyses during the 1970s produced only tentative and inconclusive identifications of indigenous amino acids. Those analyses were hampered by analytical difficulties including relative insensitivity to certain compounds, the inability to separate chiral enantiomers, and the lack of compound-specific isotopic measurements, which made it impossible to determine whether the detected amino acids were indigenous to the lunar samples or the results of contamination. Numerous advances have been made in instrumentation and methodology for amino acid characterization in extraterrestrial samples in the intervening years, yet the origin of amino acids in lunar regolith samples has been revisited only once for a single lunar sample, (3) and remains unclear. Here, we present initial data from the analyses of amino acid abundances in 12 lunar regolith samples. We discuss these abundances in the context of four potential amino acid sources: (1) terrestrial biological contamination; (2) contamination from lunar module (LM) exhaust; (3) derivation from solar windimplanted precursors; and (4) exogenous delivery from meteorites.

  8. SSERVI Analog Regolith Simulant Testbed Facility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minafra, Joseph; Schmidt, Gregory; Bailey, Brad; Gibbs, Kristina

    2016-10-01

    The Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) at NASA's Ames Research Center in California's Silicon Valley was founded in 2013 to act as a virtual institute that provides interdisciplinary research centered on the goals of its supporting directorates: NASA Science Mission Directorate (SMD) and the Human Exploration & Operations Mission Directorate (HEOMD).Primary research goals of the Institute revolve around the integration of science and exploration to gain knowledge required for the future of human space exploration beyond low Earth orbit. SSERVI intends to leverage existing JSC1A regolith simulant resources into the creation of a regolith simulant testbed facility. The purpose of this testbed concept is to provide the planetary exploration community with a readily available capability to test hardware and conduct research in a large simulant environment.SSERVI's goals include supporting planetary researchers within NASA, other government agencies; private sector and hardware developers; competitors in focused prize design competitions; and academic sector researchers.SSERVI provides opportunities for research scientists and engineers to study the effects of regolith analog testbed research in the planetary exploration field. This capability is essential to help to understand the basic effects of continued long-term exposure to a simulated analog test environment.The current facility houses approximately eight tons of JSC-1A lunar regolith simulant in a test bin consisting of a 4 meter by 4 meter area, including dust mitigation and safety oversight.Facility hardware and environment testing scenarios could include, Lunar surface mobility, Dust exposure and mitigation, Regolith handling and excavation, Solar-like illumination, Lunar surface compaction profile, Lofted dust, Mechanical properties of lunar regolith, Surface features (i.e. grades and rocks)Numerous benefits vary from easy access to a controlled analog regolith simulant testbed, and

  9. Analysis of Water Extraction From Lunar Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hegde, U.; Balasubramaniam, R.; Gokoglu, S.

    2012-01-01

    Distribution of water concentration on the Moon is currently an area of active research. Recent studies suggest the presence of ice particles, and perhaps even ice blocks and ice-cemented regolith on the Moon. Thermal extraction of the in-situ water is an attractive means of sa tisfying water requirements for a lunar mission. In this paper, a model is presented to analyze the processes occurring during the heat-up of icy regolith and extraction of the evolved water vapor. The wet regolith is assumed to be present in an initially evacuated and sealed cell which is subsequently heated. The first step of the analysis invol ves calculating the gradual increase of vapor pressure in the closed cell as the temperature is raised. Then, in the second step, the cell is evacuated to low pressure (e.g., vacuum), allowing the water vapor to leave the cell and be captured. The parameters affecting water vap or pressure build-up and evacuation for the purpose of extracting water from lunar regolith are discussed in the paper. Some comparisons wi th available experimental measurements are also made.

  10. High Fidelity Regolith Simulation Tool for ISRU Applications, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA has serious unmet needs for simulation tools capable of predicting the behavior of lunar regolith in proposed excavation, transport and handling systems....

  11. Mineralogical and chemical properties of the lunar regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mckay, David S.; Ming, Douglas W.

    1989-01-01

    The composition of lunar regolith and its attendant properties are discussed. Tables are provided listing lunar minerals, the abundance of plagioclase feldspar, pyroxene, olivine, and ilmenite in lunar materials, typical compositions of common lunar minerals, and cumulative grain-size distribution for a large number of lunar soils. Also provided are charts on the chemistry of breccias, the chemistry of lunar glass, and the comparative chemistry of surface soils for the Apollo sites. Lunar agglutinates, constructional particles made of lithic, mineral, and glass fragments welded together by a glassy matrix containing extremely fine-grained metallic iron and formed by micrometeoric impacts at the lunar surface, are discussed. Crystalline, igneous rock fragments, breccias, and lunar glass are examined. Volatiles implanted in lunar materials and regolith maturity are also addressed.

  12. Designing the Lunar Regolith Excavation Competition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le, Christopher

    2009-01-01

    The project assigned this summer involves designing a lunar regolith mining robotics competition. This process involves consulting several assets available at the Kennedy Space Center. The process involves several steps. The first step is to determine the requirements for the competition. Once these requirements are determined, the dimensions of the playing field are drawn up, first by hand, and then using computer models. After these drawings are tentatively decided upon, the cost of materials must be determined, so as to fit within the allotted budget for the project. The materials are to then be ordered, assembled, broken down, and stored throughout the duration of the competition. We must also design the advertisements and logos for the competition. This is to market and publicize the competition to college level teams. We must also determine the rules for the competition so as to have uniform requirements for all teams. Once these processes are completed, the competition can be finalized and publicized for the public. The contributing parties are Greg Galloway, Robert Mueller, Susan Sawyer, Gloria Murphy, Julia Nething, and Cassandra Liles.

  13. The extent of lunar regolith mixing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nishiizumi, K.; Imamura, M.; Kohl, C.P.; Murrell, M.T.; Arnold, J.R.; Russ, G.P. III

    1979-01-01

    The activity of solar cosmic-ray-produced 53 Mn has been measured as a function of depth in the upper 100 g/cm 2 (approximately 55 cm) of lunar cores 60009-60010 and 12025-12028. Additional samples which supplement earlier work were analyzed from the Apollo 15 and 16 drill stems. These data, taken in conjunction with previously published results and the 22 Na and 26 Al data of the Battelle Northwest group, indicate that in at least three of the four cases studied the regolith has been measureably disturbed within the last 10 m.y. In one case gardening to > 19 g/cm 2 is required. Activities measured in the uppermost 2 g/cm 2 indicate frequent mixing within this depth range. No undisturbed profiles were observed nor were any major discontinuities observed in the profiles. The Monte Carlo gardening model of Arnold has been used to derive profiles for the gardened moon-wide average of 53 Mn and 26 Al as a function of depth. The 53 Mn and 26 Al experimental results are compared with these theoretical predictions. Agreement is good in several respects, but the calculated depth of disturbance appears to be too low. (Auth.)

  14. Experimental Determination of in Situ Utilization of Lunar Regolith for Thermal Energy Storage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richter, Scott W.

    1993-01-01

    A Lunar Thermal Energy from Regolith (LUTHER) experiment has been designed and fabricated at the NASA Lewis Research Center to determine the feasibility of using lunar soil as thermal energy storage media. The experimental apparatus includes an alumina ceramic canister (25.4 cm diameter by 45.7 cm length) which contains simulated lunar regolith, a heater (either radiative or conductive), 9 heat shields, a heat transfer cold jacket, and 19 type B platinum rhodium thermocouples. The simulated lunar regolith is a basalt, mined and processed by the University of Minnesota, that closely resembles the lunar basalt returned to earth by the Apollo missions. The experiment will test the effects of vacuum, particle size, and density on the thermophysical properties of the regolith. The properties include melt temperature (range), specific heat, thermal conductivity, and latent heat of storage. Two separate tests, using two different heaters, will be performed to study the effect of heating the system using radiative and conductive heat transfer. The physical characteristics of the melt pattern, material compatibility of the molten regolith, and the volatile gas emission will be investigated by heating a portion of the lunar regolith to its melting temperature (1435 K) in a 10(exp -4) pascal vacuum chamber, equipped with a gas spectrum analyzer. A finite differencing SINDA model was developed at NASA Lewis Research Center to predict the performance of the LUTHER experiment. The analytical results of the code will be compared with the experimental data generated by the LUTHER experiment. The code will predict the effects of vacuum, particle size, and density has on the heat transfer to the simulated regolith.

  15. Distribution and Origin of Amino Acids in Lunar Regolith Samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elsila, J. E.; Callahan, M. P.; Glavin, D. P.; Dworkin, J. P.; McLain, H. L.; Noble, S. K.; Gibson, E. K., Jr.

    2015-01-01

    The existence of organic compounds on the lunar surface has been a question of interest from the Apollo era to the present. Investigations of amino acids immediately after collection of lunar samples yielded inconclusive identifications, in part due to analytical limitations including insensitivity to certain compounds, an inability to separate enantiomers, and lack of compound-specific isotopic measurements. It was not possible to determine if the detected amino acids were indigenous to the lunar samples or the result of terrestrial contamination. Recently, we presented initial data from the analysis of amino acid abundances in 12 lunar regolith samples and discussed those results in the context of four potential amino acid sources [5]. Here, we expand on our previous work, focusing on amino acid abundances and distributions in seven regolith samples and presenting the first compound-specific carbon isotopic ratios measured for amino acids in a lunar sample.

  16. Production of Oxygen from Lunar Regolith by Molten Oxide Electrolysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curreri, Peter A.

    2009-01-01

    This paper describes the use of the molten oxide electrolysis (MOE) process for the extraction of oxygen for life support and propellant, and silicon and metallic elements for use in fabrication on the Moon. The Moon is rich in mineral resources, but it is almost devoid of chemical reducing agents, therefore, molten oxide electrolysis is ideal for extraction, since the electron is the only practical reducing agent. MOE has several advantages over other extraction methods. First, electrolytic processing offers uncommon versatility in its insensitivity to feedstock composition. Secondly, oxide melts boast the twin key attributes of highest solubilizing capacity for regolith and lowest volatility of any candidate electrolytes. The former is critical in ensuring high productivity since cell current is limited by reactant solubility, while the latter simplifies cell design by obviating the need for a gas-tight reactor to contain evaporation losses as would be the case with a gas or liquid phase fluoride reagent operating at such high temperatures. Alternatively, MOE requires no import of consumable reagents (e.g. fluorine and carbon) as other processes do, and does not rely on interfacing multiple processes to obtain refined products. Electrolytic processing has the advantage of selectivity of reaction in the presence of a multi-component feed. Products from lunar regolith can be extracted in sequence according to the stabilities of their oxides as expressed by the values of the free energy of oxide formation (e.g. chromium, manganese, Fe, Si, Ti, Al, magnesium, and calcium). Previous work has demonstrated the viability of producing Fe and oxygen from oxide mixtures similar in composition to lunar regolith by molten oxide electrolysis (electrowinning), also called magma electrolysis having shown electrolytic extraction of Si from regolith simulant. This paper describes recent advances in demonstrating the MOE process by a joint project with participation by NASA KSC and

  17. The Lunar Regolith as a Recorder of Cosmic History

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, Bonnie; McKay, D.; Riofrio, L.

    2012-01-01

    The Moon can be considered a giant tape recorder containing the history of the solar system and Universe. The lunar regolith (soil) has recorded the early history of the Moon, Earth, the solar system and Universe. A major goal of future lunar exploration should be to find and play back existing fragments of that tape . By reading the lunar tape, we can uncover a record of planetary bombardment, as well as solar and stellar variability. The Moon can tell us much about our place in the Universe. The lunar regolith has likely recorded the original meteoritic bombardment of Earth and Moon, a violent cataclysm that may have peaked around 4 Gyr, and the less intense bombardment occurring since that time. This impact history is preserved on the Moon as regolith layers, ejecta layers, impact melt rocks, and ancient impact breccias. The impact history of the Earth and Moon possibly had profound effects on the origin and development of life. Decrease in meteor bombardment allowed life to develop on Earth. Life may have developed first on another body, such as Mars, then arrived via meteorite on Earth. The solar system may have experienced bursts of severe radiation from the Sun, other stars, or from unknown sources. The lunar regolith has recorded this radiation history in the form of implanted solar wind, solar flare materials and radiation damage. Lunar soil can be found sandwiched between layers of basalt or pyroclastic deposits. This filling constitutes a buried time capsule that is likely to contain well-preserved ancient regolith. Study of such samples will show us how the solar system has evolved and changed over time. The lunar tape recorder can provide detailed information on specific portions of solar and stellar variability. Data from the Moon also offers clues as to whether so-called fundamental constants have changed over time.

  18. DEM Solutions Develops Answers to Modeling Lunar Dust and Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunn, Carol Anne; Calle, Carlos; LaRoche, Richard D.

    2010-01-01

    With the proposed return to the Moon, scientists like NASA-KSC's Dr. Calle are concerned for a number of reasons. We will be staying longer on the planet's surface, future missions may include dust-raising activities, such as excavation and handling of lunar soil and rock, and we will be sending robotic instruments to do much of the work for us. Understanding more about the chemical and physical properties of lunar dust, how dust particles interact with each other and with equipment surfaces and the role of static electricity build-up on dust particles in the low-humidity lunar environment is imperative to the development of technologies for removing and preventing dust accumulation, and successfully handling lunar regolith. Dr. Calle is currently working on the problems of the electrostatic phenomena of granular and bulk materials as they apply to planetary surfaces, particularly to those of Mars and the Moon, and is heavily involved in developing instrumentation for future planetary missions. With this end in view, the NASA Kennedy Space Center's Innovative Partnerships Program Office partnered with OEM Solutions, Inc. OEM Solutions is a global leader in particle dynamics simulation software, providing custom solutions for use in tackling tough design and process problems related to bulk solids handling. Customers in industries such as pharmaceutical, chemical, mineral, and materials processing as well as oil and gas production, agricultural and construction, and geo-technical engineering use OEM Solutions' EDEM(TradeMark) software to improve the design and operation of their equipment while reducing development costs, time-to-market and operational risk. EDEM is the world's first general-purpose computer-aided engineering (CAE) tool to use state-of-the-art discrete element modeling technology for the simulation and analysis of particle handling and manufacturing operations. With EDEM you'can quickly and easily create a parameterized model of your granular solids

  19. Regolith Formation Rates and Evolution from the Diviner Lunar Radiometer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayne, P. O.; Ghent, R. R.; Bandfield, J. L.; Vasavada, A. R.; Williams, J. P.; Siegler, M. A.; Lucey, P. G.; Greenhagen, B. T.; Elder, C. M.; Paige, D. A.

    2015-12-01

    Fragmentation and overturn of lunar surface materials produces a layer of regolith, which increases in thickness through time. Experiments on the lunar surface during the Apollo era, combined with remote sensing, found that the upper 10's of cm of regolith exhibit a rapid increase in density and thermal conductivity with depth. This is interpreted to be the signature of impact gardening, which operates most rapidly in the uppermost layers. Gravity data from the GRAIL mission showed that impacts have also extensively fractured the deeper crust. The breakdown and mixing of crustal materials is therefore a central process to lunar evolution and must be understood in order to interpret compositional information from remote sensing and sample analysis. Recently, thermal infrared data from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) Diviner radiometer were used to provide the first remote observational constraints on the rate of ejecta breakdown around craters L., Campbell, B. A., Allen, C. C., Carter, L. M., & Paige, D. A. (2014). Constraints on the recent rate of lunar ejecta breakdown and implications for crater ages. Geology, 42(12), 1059-1062.

  20. High Fidelity Multi-Scale Regolith Simulation Tool for ISRU, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA has serious unmet needs for simulation tools capable of predicting the behavior of lunar regolith in proposed excavation, transport and handling systems....

  1. Evolution of Shock Melt Compositions in Lunar Regoliths

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vance, A. M.; Christoffersen, R.; Keller, L. P.; Berger, E. L.; Noble, S. K.

    2016-01-01

    Space weathering processes - driven primarily by solar wind ion and micrometeorite bombardment, are constantly changing the surface regoliths of airless bodies, such as the Moon. It is essential to study lunar soils in order to fully under-stand the processes of space weathering, and how they alter the optical reflectance spectral properties of the lunar surface relative to bedrock. Lunar agglutinates are aggregates of regolith grains fused together in a glassy matrix of shock melt produced during micrometeorite impacts into the lunar regolith. The formation of the shock melt component in agglutinates involves reduction of Fe in the target material to generate nm-scale spherules of metallic Fe (nanophase Fe0 or npFe0). The ratio of elemental Fe, in the form of npFe0, to FeO in a given bulk soil indicates its maturity, which increases with length of surface exposure as well as being typically higher in the finer-size fraction of soils. The melting and mixing process in agglutinate formation remain poorly understood. This includes incomplete knowledge regarding how the homogeneity and overall compositional trends of the agglutinate glass portions (agglutinitic glass) evolve with maturity. The aim of this study is to use sub-micrometer scale X-ray compositional mapping and image analysis to quantify the chemical homogeneity of agglutinitic glass, correlate its homogeneity to its parent soil maturity, and identify the principal chemical components contributing to the shock melt composition variations. An additional focus is to see if agglutinitic glass contains anomalously high Fe sub-micron scale compositional domains similar to those recently reported in glassy patina coatings on lunar rocks.

  2. Evolution of Regolith Feed Systems for Lunar ISRU 02 Production Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Robert P.; Townsend, Ivan I., III; Mantovani, James G.; Metzger, Philip T.

    2010-01-01

    The In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) project of the NASA Constellation Program, Exploration Technology Development Program (ETDP) has been engaged in the design and testing of various Lunar ISRU O2 production plant prototypes that can extract chemically bound oxygen from the minerals in the lunar regolith. This work demands that lunar regolith (or simulants) shall be introduced into the O2 production plant from a holding bin or hopper and subsequently expelled from the ISRU O2 production plant for disposal. This sub-system is called the Regolith Feed System (RFS) which exists in a variety of configurations depending on the O2 production plant oxygen being used (e.g. Hydrogen Reduction, Carbothermal, Molten Oxide Electrolysis). Each configuration may use a different technology and in addition it is desirable to have heat recuperation from the spent hot regolith as an integral part of the RFS. This paper addresses the various RFS and heat recuperation technologies and system configurations that have been developed under the NASA ISRU project since 2007. In addition current design solutions and lessons learned from reduced gravity flight testing will be discussed.

  3. Workshop on past and present solar radiation: the record in meteoritic and lunar regolith material

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pepin, R.O.; Mckay, D.S.

    1986-01-01

    The principal question addressed in the workshop was the extent to which asteroidal and lunar regoliths have collected and preserved, in meteoritic regolith breccias and in lunar soils and regolith breccias, a record of the flux, energy, and compositional history of the solar wind and solar flares. Six central discussion topics were identified. They are: (1)Trapped solar wind and flare gases, tracks, and micrometeorite pits in regolith components; (2)Comparison between lunar regolith breccias, meteoritic regolith breccias, and the lunar soil; (3)The special role of regolith breccias and the challenge of dating their times of compaction; (4)Implications of the data for the flux and compositional history of solar particle emission, composition, and physical mechanisms in the solar source regions, and the composition of the early nebula; (5)How and to what extent have records of incident radiation been altered in various types of grains; (6) Future research directions

  4. Electrostatic Separation of Lunar Regolith for Size Beneficiation Using Same-Material Tribocharging

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The success of future long-term manned lunar missions depends on the development of certain key technologies. One such technology, the utilization of lunar regolith...

  5. Moessbauer mineralogy on the Moon: The lunar regolith

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morris, Richard V.; Klingelhoefer, Goestar; Korotev, Randy L.; Shelfer, Tad D.

    1998-01-01

    A first-order requirement for spacecraft missions that land on solid planetary objects is instrumentation for mineralogical analyses. For purposes of providing diagnostic information about naturally-occurring materials, the element iron is particularly important because it is abundant and multivalent. Knowledge of the oxidation state of iron and its distribution among iron-bearing mineralogies tightly constrains the types of materials present and provides information about formation and modification (weathering) processes. Because Moessbauer spectroscopy is sensitive to both the valence of iron and its local chemical environment, the technique is unique in providing information about both the relative abundance of iron-bearing phases and oxidation state of the iron. The Moessbauer mineralogy of lunar regolith samples (primarily soils from the Apollo 16 and 17 missions to the Moon) were measured in the laboratory to demonstrate the strength of the technique for in-situ mineralogical exploration of the Moon. The regolith samples were modeled as mixtures of five iron-bearing phases: olivine, pyroxene, glass, ilmenite, and metal. Based on differences in relative proportions of iron associated with these phases, volcanic-ash regolith can be distinguished from impact-derived regolith, impact-derived soils of different geologic affinity (e.g., highlands and maria) can be distinguished on the basis of their constituent minerals, and soil maturity can be estimated. The total resonant absorption area of the Moessbauer spectrum can be used to estimate total FeO concentrations

  6. The Origin of Amino Acids in Lunar Regolith Samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Jamie E.; Callahan, Michael P.; Dworkin, Jason P.; Glavin, Daniel P.; McLain, Hannah L.; Noble, Sarah K.; Gibson, Everett K., Jr.

    2016-01-01

    We analyzed the amino acid content of seven lunar regolith samples returned by the Apollo 16 and Apollo 17 missions and stored under NASA curation since collection using ultrahigh-performance liquid chromatography with fluorescence detection and time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Consistent with results from initial analyses shortly after collection in the 1970s, we observed amino acids at low concentrations in all of the curated samples, ranging from 0.2 parts-per-billion (ppb) to 42.7 ppb in hot-water extracts and 14.5 ppb to 651.1 ppb in 6M HCl acid-vapor-hydrolyzed, hot-water extracts. Amino acids identified in the Apollo soil extracts include glycine, D- and L-alanine, D- and L-aspartic acid, D- and L-glutamic acid, D- and L-serine, L-threonine, and L-valine, all of which had previously been detected in lunar samples, as well as several compounds not previously identified in lunar regoliths: -aminoisobutyric acid (AIB), D-and L-amino-n-butyric acid (-ABA), DL-amino-n-butyric acid, -amino-n-butyric acid, -alanine, and -amino-n-caproic acid. We observed an excess of the L enantiomer in most of the detected proteinogenic amino acids, but racemic alanine and racemic -ABA were present in some samples.

  7. Magnetic Sorting of the Regolith on the Moon: Lunar Swirls

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pieters, C. M.; Garrick-Bethell, I.; Hemingway, D.

    2014-12-01

    All of the mysterious albedo features on the Moon called "lunar swirls" are associated with magnetic anomalies, but not all magnetic anomalies are associated with lunar swirls [1]. It is often hypothesized that the albedo markings are tied to immature regolith on the surface, perhaps due to magnetic shielding of the solar wind and prevention of normal space weathering of the soil. Although interaction of the solar wind with the surface at swirls is indeed affected by the local magnetic field [2], this does not appear to result in immature soils on the surface. Calibrated spectra from the Moon Mineralogy Mapper [M3] (in image format) demonstrate that the high albedo markings for swirls are simply not consistent with immature regolith as is now understood from detailed analyses of lunar samples [eg 3]. However, M3 data show that the high albedo features of swirls are distinct and quite different from normal soils (in both the highlands and the mare). They allexhibit a flatter continuum across the near-infrared, but the actual band strength of ferrous minerals shows little (if any) deviation [4]. Recent analyses of magnetic field direction at swirls [5] mimic the observed albedo patterns (horizontal surface fields in bright areas, vertical surface fields in dark lanes). When coupled with the optical properties of magnetic separates of lunar soils [6] and our knowledge that the magnetic component of the soil results from space weathering [3,6], we propose a new and very simple explanation for these enigmatic albedo markings: the lunar swirls result from magnetic sorting of a well developed regolith. With time, normal gardening of the soil over a magnetic anomaly causes some of the dark magnetic component of the soil to be gradually removed from regions (high albedo areas) and accumulated in others (dark lanes). We are modeling predicted sorting rates using realistic rates of dust production. If this mechanism is tenable, only the origin of these magnetic anomalies

  8. Benefit of Lunar Regolith on Reflector Mass Savings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hatton, Steven A.; El-Genk, Mohamed S.

    2007-01-01

    The 2004 NASA Vision for Space Exploration calls for the return of mankind to the moon by no later than 2020, in preparation for an adventure to Mars and beyond. An envisioned lunar outpost will provide living quarters for initially 5- 10 astronauts for up to 2 weeks, and latter for science experiments, and recovery of mineral and indigenous resources for the day-to-day operation and production of propellant. These activities would require electrical and thermal powers in the order of 10's - 100's of kilowatts 24/7. Potential power options include photovoltaic, requiring massive batteries or fuel cells for energy storage during the long nights on the moon, and nuclear reactor power systems, which are much more compact and operate independent of the sun. This paper examines the benefit of using the lunar regolith as a supplemental neutron reflector on decreasing the launch mass of the Sectored Compact Reactor (SCoRe-S), developed at the Institute for Space and Nuclear Power Studies. In addition to providing at least $2.00 of hot-clean excess reactivity at the beginning of life, various SCoRe-S concepts investigated in this paper are at least $1.00 sub-critical when shutdown, and when the bare reactor cores are submerged in wet sand and flooded with seawater, following a launch abort accident. Design calculations performed using MCNP5 confirmed that using lunar regolith as supplementary reflector reduces the launch mass of the SCoRe-S cores by ∼ 34% - 35%, or 150 - 200 kg, while satisfying the above reactivity requirements

  9. RESOLVE (Regolith & Environmental Science Oxygen & Lunar Volatile Extraction) Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Ray; Coan, Mary; Captain, Janine; Cryderman, Kate; Quinn, Jacqueline

    2015-01-01

    The RESOLVE Project is a lunar prospecting mission whose primary goal is to characterize water and other volatiles in lunar regolith. The Lunar Advanced Volatiles Analysis (LAVA) subsystem is comprised of a fluid subsystem that transports flow to the gas chromatograph - mass spectrometer (GC-MS) instruments that characterize volatiles and the Water Droplet Demonstration (WDD) that will capture and display water condensation in the gas stream. The LAVA Engineering Test Unit (ETU) is undergoing risk reduction testing this summer and fall within a vacuum chamber to understand and characterize component and integrated system performance. Testing of line heaters, printed circuit heaters, pressure transducers, temperature sensors, regulators, and valves in atmospheric and vacuum environments was done. Test procedures were developed to guide experimental tests and test reports to analyze and draw conclusions from the data. In addition, knowledge and experience was gained with preparing a vacuum chamber with fluid and electrical connections. Further testing will include integrated testing of the fluid subsystem with the gas supply system, near-infrared spectrometer for the Surge Tank (NIRST), WDD, Sample Delivery System, and GC-MS in the vacuum chamber. Since LAVA is a scientific subsystem, the near infrared spectrometer and GC-MS instruments will be tested during the ETU testing phase.

  10. A simulated regolith medium for multi-wavelength studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkman, O.; Muinonen, K.; Parviainen, H.; Näränen, J.

    2012-04-01

    Effects arising from the small-scale surface structure are significant in remote studies of regolith surfaces on atmosphereless solar system bodies, such as the Moon, Mercury and the asteroids. The important properties determining these effects are the porosity of the regolith and the roughness of the interface between the bulk material and empty space. We concentrate on the regolith effects in visible light photometry and X-ray spectrometry. The fluorescent X-ray spectrum induced by solar X-rays contains information about the elemental abundances of the surface material, while the photometry can be used to constrain surface properties such as porosity. We have developed a computer model simulating a regolith medium consisting of spherical particles with variable size distribution and properties. The bulk properties of the medium, such as porosity and surface roughness, can be varied. The model can then be used in ray-tracing simulations of the regolith effects in both visible light scattering and X-ray fluorescence. In photometric studies the scattering law of the constituent particles can be chosen to take into account scattering phenomena such as coherent backscattering. In the X-ray simulations, we can choose the elemental abundances of the material and the spectrum of the incident X-ray radiation. The ray-tracing simulations then allow us to determine the characteristics of the emitted radiation in different observational geometries. We present results from various studies which have been based on our regolith model. The model has been used to simulate the regolith effects on X-ray fluorescence spectra under specific situations. These can be compared to laboratory measurements. The visible light simulations have been applied in a study of the shadowing effects in photometry. The model was also used in a study of lunar photometry from SMART-1/AMIE data. Applications in the analysis of X-ray spectrometry from the BepiColombo MIXS/SIXS instruments are planned. An

  11. Stratification in the lunar regolith - a preliminary view

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Duke, M.B.; Nagle, J.S.

    1975-01-01

    Although the knowledge of lunar regolith stratification is incomplete, several categories of thick and thin strata have been identified. Relatively thick units average 2 to 3 cm in thickness, and appear surficially to be massive. On more detailed examination, these units can be uniformly fine-grained, can show internal trends, or can show internal variations which apparently are random. Other thick units contain soil clasts apparently reworked from underlying units. Thin laminae average approximately 1 mm in thickness; lenticular distribution and composition of some thin laminae indicates they are fillets shed from adjacent rock fragments. Other dark, fine-grained, well-sorted thin laminae appear to be surficial zones, reworked by micrometeorites. Interpretations of stratigraphic succession can be strengthened by the occurrence of characteristic coarse rock fragments and the orientation of large spatter agglutinates, which are commonly found in their original depositional orientation. (Auth.)

  12. Electrostatic Beneficiation of Lunar Regolith: Applications in In-Situ Resource Utilization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trigwell, Steve; Captain, James; Weis, Kyle; Quinn, Jacqueline

    2011-01-01

    Upon returning to the moon, or further a field such as Mars, presents enormous challenges in sustaining life for extended periods of time far beyond the few days the astronauts experienced on the moon during the Apollo missions. A stay on Mars is envisioned to last several months, and it would be cost prohibitive to take all the requirements for such a stay from earth. Therefore, future exploration missions will be required to be self-sufficient and utilize the resources available at the mission site to sustain human occupation. Such an exercise is currently the focus of intense research at NASA under the In-situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) program. As well as oxygen and water necessary for human life, resources for providing building materials for habitats, radiation protection, and landing/launch pads are required. All these materials can be provided by the regolith present on the surface as it contains sufficient minerals and metals oxides to meet the requirements. However, before processing, it would be cost effective if the regolith could be enriched in the mineral(s) of interest. This can be achieved by electrostatic beneficiation in which tribocharged mineral particles are separated out and the feedstock enriched or depleted as required. The results of electrostatic beneficiation of lunar simulants and actual Apollo regolith, in lunar high vacuum are reported in which various degrees of efficient particle separation and mineral enrichment up to a few hundred percent were achieved.

  13. Parameters and structure of lunar regolith in Chang'E-3 landing area from lunar penetrating radar (LPR) data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Zehua; Fang, Guangyou; Ji, Yicai; Gao, Yunze; Wu, Chao; Zhang, Xiaojuan

    2017-01-01

    Chang'E-3 (CE-3) landed in the northwest Mare Imbrium, a region that has not been explored before. Yutu rover that released by CE-3 lander carried the first lunar surface penetrating radar (LPR) for exploring lunar regolith thickness and subsurface shallow geological structures. In this paper, based on the LPR data and the Panoramic Camera (PC) data, we first calculate the lunar surface regolith parameters in CE-3 landing area including its permittivity, density, conductivity and FeO + TiO2 content. LPR data provides a higher spatial resolution and more accuracy for the lunar regolith parameters comparing to other remote sensing techniques, such as orbit radar sounder and microwave sensing or earth-based powerful radar. We also derived the regolith thickness and its weathered rate with much better accuracy in the landing area. The results indicate that the regolith growth rate is much faster than previous estimation, the regolith parameters are not uniform even in such a small study area and the thickness and growth rate of lunar regolith here are different from other areas in Mare Imbrium. We infer that the main reason should be geological deformation that caused by multiple impacts of meteorites in different sizes.

  14. CNT-Based Smart Electrostatic Filters for Capturing Nanoparticulate Lunar Regolith, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The abrasive, reactive, and ubiquitous nature of lunar regolith created significant and serious problems during the Apollo moon missions. In this Phase I, Agave...

  15. Robust and Elastic Lunar and Martian Structures from 3D-Printed Regolith Inks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jakus, Adam E.; Koube, Katie D.; Geisendorfer, Nicholas R.; Shah, Ramille N.

    2017-03-01

    Here, we present a comprehensive approach for creating robust, elastic, designer Lunar and Martian regolith simulant (LRS and MRS, respectively) architectures using ambient condition, extrusion-based 3D-printing of regolith simulant inks. The LRS and MRS powders are characterized by distinct, highly inhomogeneous morphologies and sizes, where LRS powder particles are highly irregular and jagged and MRS powder particles are rough, but primarily rounded. The inks are synthesized via simple mixing of evaporant, surfactant, and plasticizer solvents, polylactic-co-glycolic acid (30% by solids volume), and regolith simulant powders (70% by solids volume). Both LRS and MRS inks exhibit similar rheological and 3D-printing characteristics, and can be 3D-printed at linear deposition rates of 1-150 mm/s using 300 μm to 1.4 cm-diameter nozzles. The resulting LRS and MRS 3D-printed materials exhibit similar, but distinct internal and external microstructures and material porosity (~20-40%). These microstructures contribute to the rubber-like quasi-static and cyclic mechanical properties of both materials, with young’s moduli ranging from 1.8 to 13.2 MPa and extension to failure exceeding 250% over a range of strain rates (10-1-102 min-1). Finally, we discuss the potential for LRS and MRS ink components to be reclaimed and recycled, as well as be synthesized in resource-limited, extraterrestrial environments.

  16. Particle Shape Characterization of Lunar Regolith using Reflected Light Microscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCarty, C. B.; Garcia, G. C.; Rickman, D.

    2014-12-01

    Automated identification of particles in lunar thin sections is necessary for practical measurement of particle shape, void characterization, and quantitative characterization of sediment fabric. This may be done using image analysis, but several aspects of the lunar regolith make such automations difficult. For example, many of the particles are shattered; others are aggregates of smaller particles. Sieve sizes of the particles span 5 orders of magnitude. The physical thickness of a thin section, at a nominal 30 microns, is large compared to the size of many of the particles. Image acquisition modes, such as SEM and reflected light, while superior to transmitted light, still have significant ambiguity as to the volume being sampled. It is also desirable to have a technique that is inexpensive, not resource intensive, and analytically robust. To this end, we have developed an image acquisition and processing protocol that identifies and delineates resolvable particles on the front surface of a lunar thin section using a petrographic microscope in reflected light. For a polished thin section, a grid is defined covering the entire thin section. The grid defines discrete images taken with 20% overlap, minimizing the number of particles that intersect image boundaries. In reflected light mode, two images are acquired at each grid location, with a closed aperture diaphragm. One image, A, is focused precisely on the front surface of the thin section. The second image, B, is made after the stage is brought toward the objective lens just slightly. A bright fringe line, analogous to a Becke line, appears inside all transparent particles at the front surface of the section in the second image. The added light in the bright line corresponds to a deficit around the particles. Particle identification is done using ImageJ and uses multiple steps. A hybrid 5x5 median filter is used to make images Af and Bf. This primarily removes very small particles just below the front surface

  17. Sintering of micro-trusses created by extrusion-3D-printing of lunar regolith inks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Shannon L.; Jakus, Adam E.; Koube, Katie D.; Ibeh, Amaka J.; Geisendorfer, Nicholas R.; Shah, Ramille N.; Dunand, David C.

    2018-02-01

    The development of in situ fabrication methods for the infrastructure required to support human life on the Moon is necessary due to the prohibitive cost of transporting large quantities of materials from the Earth. Cellular structures, consisting of a regular network (truss) of micro-struts with ∼500 μm diameters, suitable for bricks, blocks, panels, and other load-bearing structural elements for habitats and other infrastructure are created by direct-extrusion 3D-printing of liquid inks containing JSC-1A lunar regolith simulant powders, followed by sintering. The effects of sintering time, temperature, and atmosphere (air or hydrogen) on the microstructures, mechanical properties, and magnetic properties of the sintered lunar regolith micro-trusses are investigated. The air-sintered micro-trusses have higher relative densities, linear shrinkages, and peak compressive strengths, due to the improved sintering of the struts within the micro-trusses achieved by a liquid or glassy phase. Whereas the hydrogen-sintered micro-trusses show no liquid-phase sintering or glassy phase, they contain metallic iron 0.1-2 μm particles from the reduction of ilmenite, which allows them to be lifted with magnets.

  18. Assessing extraterrestrial regolith material simulants for in-situ resource utilization based 3D printing

    OpenAIRE

    Goulas, A; Binner, JGP; Harris, RA; Friel, RJ

    2017-01-01

    This research paper investigates the suitability of ceramic multi-component materials, which are found on the Martian and Lunar surfaces, for 3D printing (aka Additive Manufacturing) of solid structures. 3D printing is a promising solution as part of the cutting edge field of future in situ space manufacturing applications. 3D printing of physical assets from simulated Martian and Lunar regolith was successfully performed during this work by utilising laser-based powder bed fusion equipment. ...

  19. Reactivity Studies of Inconel 625 with Sodium, and Lunar Regolith Stimulant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillies, Donald; Salvail, Pat; Reid, Bob; Colebaugh, James; Easterling, Greg

    2008-01-01

    In the event of the need for nuclear power in exploration, high flux heat pipes will be needed for heat transfer from space nuclear reactors to various energy conversion devices, and to safely dissipate excess heat. Successful habitation will necessitate continuous operation of alkali metal filled heat pipes for 10 or-more years in a hostile environment with little maintenance. They must be chemical and creep resistant in the high vacuum of space (lunar), and they must operate reliably in low gravity conditions with intermittent high radiation fluxes. One candidate material for the heat pipe shell, namely Inconel 625, has been tested to determine its compatibility with liquid sodium. Any reactivity could manifest itself as a problem over the long time periods anticipated. In addition, possible reactions with the lunar regolith will take place, as will evaporation of selected elements at the external surfaces of the heat pipes, and so there is a need for extensive long-term testing under simulated lunar conditions.

  20. Distribution, movement, and evolution of the volatile elements in the lunar regolith

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gibson, E.K. Jr.

    1975-01-01

    The abundances and distributions of carbon, nitrogen, and sulfur in lunar soils are reviewed. Carbon and nitrogen have a predominantly extra-lunar origin in lunar soils and breccias, while sulfur is mostly indigeneous to the Moon. The lunar processes which effect the movement, distribution, and evolution of carbon, nitrogen, and sulfur, along with the volatile alkali elements sodium, potassium, and rubidium during regolith processes are discussed. Possible mechanisms which may result in the addition to or loss from the Moon of these volatile elements are considered. (Auth.)

  1. Distribution, movement, and evolution of the volatile elements in the lunar regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, E. K., Jr.

    1975-01-01

    The abundances and distributions of carbon, nitrogen, and sulfur in lunar soils are reviewed. Carbon and nitrogen have a predominantly extra-lunar origin in lunar soils and breccias, while sulfur is mostly indigeneous to the moon. The lunar processes which effect the movement, distribution, and evolution of carbon, nitrogen, and sulfur, along with the volatile alkali elements sodium, potassium, and rubidium during regolith processes are discussed. Possible mechanisms which may result in the addition to or loss from the moon of these volatile elements are considered.

  2. Synthesis for Lunar Simulants: Glass, Agglutinate, Plagioclase, Breccia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinstein, Michael; Wilson, Stephen A.; Rickman, Douglas L.; Stoeser, Douglas

    2012-01-01

    The video describes a process for making glass for lunar regolith simulants that was developed from a patented glass-producing technology. Glass composition can be matched to simulant design and specification. Production of glass, pseudo agglutinates, plagioclase, and breccias is demonstrated. The system is capable of producing hundreds of kilograms of high quality glass and simulants per day.

  3. Performance analysis of a lunar based solar thermal power system with regolith thermal storage

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lu, Xiaochen; Ma, Rong; Wang, Chao; Yao, Wei

    2016-01-01

    The manned deep-space exploration is a hot topic of the current space activities. The continuous supply of thermal and electrical energy for the scientific equipment and human beings is a crucial issue for the lunar outposts. Since the night lasts for periods of about 350 h at most locations on the lunar surface, massive energy storage is required for continuous energy supply during the lengthy lunar night and the in-situ resource utilization is demanded. A lunar based solar thermal power system with regolith thermal storage is presented in this paper. The performance analysis is carried out by the finite-time thermodynamics to take into account major irreversible losses. The influences of some key design parameters are analyzed for system optimization. The analytical results shows that the lunar based solar thermal power system with regolith thermal storage can meet the requirement of the continuous energy supply for lunar outposts. - Highlights: • A lunar based solar thermal power system with regolith thermal storage is presented. • The performance analysis is carried out by the finite-time thermodynamics. • The influences of some key design parameters are analyzed.

  4. Dielectric properties estimation of the lunar regolith at CE-3 landing site using lunar penetrating radar data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Jianqing; Su, Yan; Ding, Chunyu; Xing, Shuguo; Dai, Shun; Zou, Yongliao

    2017-03-01

    The second channel (CH2) of the Lunar Penetrating Radar (LPR) carried on the Chang'e-3 (CE-3) Yutu Rover was used to determine the thickness and structure of the lunar regolith. Accurately revealing the true structure beneath the surface requires knowledge of the dielectric permittivity of the regolith, which allows one to properly apply migration to the radar image. In contrast to simple assumptions in previous studies, this paper takes account of heterogeneity of the regolith and derives regolith's permittivity distribution laterally and vertically by a method widely used in data processing of terrestrial Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR). We find that regolith permittivity at the landing site increases with depth more quickly than previously recognized. At a depth of ∼2.5-3 m, the dielectric constant reaches the value of solid basalt. The radar image was migrated on the basis of the permittivity profile. We do not find any continuous distinct layers or an apparent regolith/rock interface in the migrated radargram, which implies that this area is covered by relatively young, poorly layered deposits.

  5. Enhanced Mesh-Free Simulation of Regolith Flow, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA needs simulation tools capable of predicting the behavior of regolith in proposed excavation, transport, and handling or sample acquisition systems. For...

  6. RESOLVE: Regolith and Environment Science and Oxygen and Lunar Volatile Extraction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinn, Jacqueline; Baird, Scott; Colaprete, Anthony; Larson, William; Sanders, Gerald; Picard, Martin

    2011-01-01

    Regolith & Environment Science and Oxygen & Lunar Volatile Extraction (RESOLVE) is an internationally developed payload that is intended to prospect for resources on other planetary bodies. RESOLVE is a miniature drilling and chemistry plant packaged onto a medium-sized rover to collect and analyze soil for volatile components such as water or hydrogen that could be used in human exploration efforts.

  7. Modeling the reflectance of the lunar regolith by a new method combining Monte Carlo Ray tracing and Hapke's model with application to Chang'E-1 IIM data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Un-Hong; Wu, Yunzhao; Wong, Hon-Cheng; Liang, Yanyan; Tang, Zesheng

    2014-01-01

    In this paper, we model the reflectance of the lunar regolith by a new method combining Monte Carlo ray tracing and Hapke's model. The existing modeling methods exploit either a radiative transfer model or a geometric optical model. However, the measured data from an Interference Imaging spectrometer (IIM) on an orbiter were affected not only by the composition of minerals but also by the environmental factors. These factors cannot be well addressed by a single model alone. Our method implemented Monte Carlo ray tracing for simulating the large-scale effects such as the reflection of topography of the lunar soil and Hapke's model for calculating the reflection intensity of the internal scattering effects of particles of the lunar soil. Therefore, both the large-scale and microscale effects are considered in our method, providing a more accurate modeling of the reflectance of the lunar regolith. Simulation results using the Lunar Soil Characterization Consortium (LSCC) data and Chang'E-1 elevation map show that our method is effective and useful. We have also applied our method to Chang'E-1 IIM data for removing the influence of lunar topography to the reflectance of the lunar soil and to generate more realistic visualizations of the lunar surface.

  8. From Lunar Regolith to Fabricated Parts: Technology Developments and the Utilization of Moon Dirt

    Science.gov (United States)

    McLemore, C. A.; Fikes, J. C.; McCarley, K. S.; Good, J. E.; Gilley, S. D.; Kennedy, J. P.

    2008-01-01

    The U.S. Space Exploration Policy has as a cornerstone the establishment of an outpost on the moon. This lunar outpost wil1 eventually provide the necessary planning, technology development, testbed, and training for manned missions in the future beyond the Moon. As part of the overall activity, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is investigating how the in situ resources can be utilized to improve mission success by reducing up-mass, improving safety, reducing risk, and bringing down costs for the overall mission. Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC), along with other NASA centers, is supporting this endeavor by exploring how lunar regolith can be mined for uses such as construction, life support, propulsion, power, and fabrication. An infrastructure capable of fabrication and nondestructive evaluation will be needed to support habitat structure development and maintenance, tools and mechanical parts fabrication, as well as repair and replacement of space-mission hardware such as life-support items, vehicle components, and crew systems, This infrastructure will utilize the technologies being developed under the In Situ Fabrication and Repair (ISFR) element, which is working in conjunction with the technologies being developed under the In Situ Resources Utilization (ISRU) element, to live off the land. The ISFR Element supports the Space Exploration Initiative by reducing downtime due to failed components; decreasing risk to crew by recovering quickly from degraded operation of equipment; improving system functionality with advanced geometry capabilities; and enhancing mission safety by reducing assembly part counts of original designs where possible. This paper addresses the need and plan for understanding the properties of the lunar regolith to determine the applicability of using this material in a fabrication process. This effort includes the development of high fidelity simulants that will be used in fabrication processes on the ground to

  9. Multi-Use Solar Thermal System for Oxygen Production from Lunar Regolith [7227-570], Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — We propose to develop an innovative solar thermal system for oxygen production from lunar regolith. In this system solar radiation is collected by the concentrator...

  10. Regolith stratigraphy at the Chang'E-3 landing site as seen by lunar penetrating radar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fa, Wenzhe; Zhu, Meng-Hua; Liu, Tiantian; Plescia, Jeffrey B.

    2015-12-01

    The Chang'E-3 lunar penetrating radar (LPR) observations at 500 MHz reveal four major stratigraphic zones from the surface to a depth of ~20 m along the survey line: a layered reworked zone (<1 m), an ejecta layer (~2-6 m), a paleoregolith layer (~4-11 m), and the underlying mare basalts. The reworked zone has two to five distinct layers and consists of surface regolith. The paleoregolith buried by the ejecta from a 500 m crater is relatively homogenous and contains only a few rocks. Population of buried rocks increases with depth to ~2 m at first, and then decreases with depth, representing a balance between initial deposition of the ejecta and later turnover of the regolith. Combining with the surface age, the LPR observations indicate a mean accumulation rate of about 5-10 m/Gyr for the surface regolith, which is at least 4-8 times larger than previous estimation.

  11. The rate of dielectric breakdown weathering of lunar regolith in permanently shadowed regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jordan, A. P.; Stubbs, T. J.; Wilson, J. K.; Schwadron, N. A.; Spence, H. E.

    2017-02-01

    Large solar energetic particle events may cause dielectric breakdown in the upper 1 mm of regolith in permanently shadowed regions (PSRs). We estimate how the resulting breakdown weathering compares to meteoroid impact weathering. Although the SEP event rates measured by the Cosmic Ray Telescope for the Effects of Radiation (CRaTER) on the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) are too low for breakdown to have significantly affected the regolith over the duration of the LRO mission, regolith gardened by meteoroid impacts has been exposed to SEPs for ∼106 yr. Therefore, we estimate that breakdown weathering's production rate of vapor and melt in the coldest PSRs is up to 1.8 - 3.5 ×10-7 kg m-2 yr-1 , which is comparable to that produced by meteoroid impacts. Thus, in PSRs, up to 10-25% of the regolith may have been melted or vaporized by dielectric breakdown. Breakdown weathering could also be consistent with observations of the increased porosity ("fairy castles") of PSR regolith. We also show that it is conceivable that breakdown-weathered material is present in Apollo soil samples. Consequently, breakdown weathering could be an important process within PSRs, and it warrants further investigation.

  12. Characterization of Minnesota lunar simulant for plant growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oglesby, James P.; Lindsay, Willard L.; Sadeh, Willy Z.

    1993-01-01

    Processing of lunar regolith into a plant growth medium is crucial in the development of a regenerative life support system for a lunar base. Plants, which are the core of such a system, produce food and oxygen for humans and, at the same time, consume carbon dioxide. Because of the scarcity of lunar regolith, simulants must be used to infer its properties and to develop procedures for weathering and chemical analyses. The Minnesota Lunar Simulant (MLS) has been identified to date as the best available simulant for lunar regolith. Results of the dissolution studies reveal that appropriately fertilized MLS can be a suitable medium for plant growth. The techniques used in conducting these studies can be extended to investigate the suitability of actual lunar regolith as a plant growth medium. Dissolution experiments were conducted using the MLS to determine its nutritional and toxicity characteristics for plant growth and to develop weathering and chemical analysis techniques. Two weathering regimes, one with water and one with dilute organic acids simulating the root rhizosphere microenvironment, were investigated. Elemental concentrations were measured using inductively-coupled-plasma (ICP) emission spectrometry and ion chromatography (IC). The geochemical speciation model, MINTEQA2, was used to determine the major solution species and the minerals controlling them. Acidification was found to be a useful method for increasing cation concentrations to meaningful levels. Initial results indicate that MLS weathers to give neutral to slightly basic solutions which contain acceptable amounts of the essential elements required for plant nutrition (i.e., potassium, calcium, magnesium, sulfur, zinc, sodium, silicon, manganese, copper, chlorine, boron, molybdenum, and cobalt). Elements that need to be supplemented include carbon, nitrogen, and perhaps phosphorus and iron. Trace metals in solution were present at nontoxic levels.

  13. Lunar Dust and Lunar Simulant Activation, Monitoring, Solution and Cellular Toxicity Properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallace, William; Jeevarajan, A. S.

    2009-01-01

    During the Apollo missions, many undesirable situations were encountered that must be mitigated prior to returning humans to the moon. Lunar dust (that part of the lunar regolith less than 20 microns in diameter) was found to produce several problems with mechanical equipment and could have conceivably produced harmful physiological effects for the astronauts. For instance, the abrasive nature of the dust was found to cause malfunctions of various joints and seals of the spacecraft and suits. Additionally, though efforts were made to exclude lunar dust from the cabin of the lunar module, a significant amount of material nonetheless found its way inside. With the loss of gravity correlated with ascent from the lunar surface, much of the finer fraction of this dust began to float and was inhaled by the astronauts. The short visits tothe Moon during Apollo lessened exposure to the dust, but the plan for future lunar stays of up to six months demands that methods be developed to minimize the risk of dust inhalation. The guidelines for what constitutes "safe" exposure will guide the development of engineering controls aimed at preventing the presence of dust in the lunar habitat. This work has shown the effects of grinding on the activation level of lunar dust, the changes in dissolution properties of lunar simulant, and the production of cytokines by cellular systems. Grinding of lunar dust leads to the production of radicals in solution and increased dissolution of lunar simulant in buffers of different pH. Additionally, ground lunar simulant has been shown to promote the production of IL-6 and IL-8, pro-inflammatory cytokines, by alveolar epithelial cells. These results provide evidence of the need for further studies on these materials prior to returning to the lunar surface.

  14. Kinetic and Potential Sputtering Enhancements of Lunar Regolith Erosion: The Contribution of the Heavy Multicharged (Minority) Solar Wind Constituents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, F. W.; Barghouty, A. F.

    2012-01-01

    We report preliminary results for H+, Ar+1, Ar+6 and Ar+9 ion sputtering of JSC-1A lunar regolith simulant at solar wind velocities, obtain ed at the ORNL Multicharged Ion Research Facility using quadrupole ma ss spectrometry. The multi-charged Ar ions were used as proxies for i ntermediate mass solar wind multicharged ions. Prior to the Ar beam e xposures, the sample was exposed to high fluence H+ irradiation to si mulate H-loading due to the dominant solar wind constituent. A x80 en hancement of oxygen sputtering by Ar+ over same velocity H+ was measu red and an additional x2 increase for Ar+9 over same velocity Ar+ was demonstrated, giving clear evidence of the importance of potential s puttering by multicharged ions. This enhancement was observed to pers ist to the maximum fluences investigated (approx 10(exp 16)/sq cm). As discussed in a companion abstract by N. Barghouty, such persistent s puttering enhancement has significant implications on weathering and aging of lunar regolith. In addition, XPS measurements showed strong evidence of Fe reduction for those target areas that had been exposed to high fluence Ar+ and Ar+8 beams. Preferential oxidation of the Fe -reduced beam-exposed regions during transfer to the XPS system led t o enhanced O concentrations in those regions as well. On the basis of these very promising preliminary results, a NASA-LASER project on mo re extensive measurements was recently selected for funding. The prop osal expands the collaboration with NASA-MSFC for the simulation effort, and adds a new collaboration with NASA-GSFC for lunar mission-rele vant measurements.

  15. LUNAR OUTGASSING, TRANSIENT PHENOMENA, AND THE RETURN TO THE MOON. II. PREDICTIONS AND TESTS FOR OUTGASSING/REGOLITH INTERACTIONS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Crotts, Arlin P. S.; Hummels, Cameron

    2009-01-01

    We follow Paper I with predictions of how gas leaking through the lunar surface could influence the regolith, as might be observed via optical transient lunar phenomena (TLPs) and related effects. We touch on several processes, but concentrate on low and high flow rate extremes, which are perhaps the most likely. We model explosive outgassing for the smallest gas overpressure at the regolith base that releases the regolith plug above it. This disturbance's timescale and affected area are consistent with observed TLPs; we also discuss other effects. For slow flow, escape through the regolith is prolonged by low diffusivity. Water, found recently in deep magma samples, is unique among candidate volatiles, capable of freezing between the regolith base and surface, especially near the lunar poles. For major outgassing sites, we consider the possible accumulation of water ice. Over geological time, ice accumulation can evolve downward through the regolith. Depending on gases additional to water, regolith diffusivity might be suppressed chemically, blocking seepage and forcing the ice zone to expand to larger areas, up to km 2 scales, again, particularly at high latitudes. We propose an empirical path forward, wherein current and forthcoming technologies provide controlled, sensitive probes of outgassing. The optical transient/outgassing connection, addressed via Earth-based remote sensing, suggests imaging and/or spectroscopy, but aspects of lunar outgassing might be more covert, as indicated above. TLPs betray some outgassing, but does outgassing necessarily produce TLPs? We also suggest more intrusive techniques from radar to in situ probes. Understanding lunar volatiles seems promising in terms of resource exploitation for human exploration of the Moon and beyond, and offers interesting scientific goals in its own right. Many of these approaches should be practiced in a pristine lunar atmosphere, before significant confusing signals likely to be produced upon humans

  16. Direct Electrolysis of Molten Lunar Regolith for the Production of Oxygen and Metals on the Moon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sirk, Aislinn H. C.; Sadoway, Donald R.; Sibille, Laurent

    2010-01-01

    When considering the construction of a lunar base, the high cost ($ 100,000 a kilogram) of transporting materials to the surface of the moon is a significant barrier. Therefore in-situ resource utilization will be a key component of any lunar mission. Oxygen gas is a key resource, abundant on earth and absent on the moon. If oxygen could be produced on the moon, this provides a dual benefit. Not only does it no longer need to be transported to the surface for breathing purposes; it can also be used as a fuel oxidizer to support transportation of crew and other materials more cheaply between the surface of the moon, and lower earth orbit (approximately $20,000/kg). To this end a stable, robust (lightly manned) system is required to produce oxygen from lunar resources. Herein, we investigate the feasibility of producing oxygen, which makes up almost half of the weight of the moon by direct electrolysis of the molten lunar regolith thus achieving the generation of usable oxygen gas while producing primarily iron and silicon at the cathode from the tightly bound oxides. The silicate mixture (with compositions and mechanical properties corresponding to that of lunar regolith) is melted at temperatures near 1600 C. With an inert anode and suitable cathode, direct electrolysis (no supporting electrolyte) of the molten silicate is carried out, resulting in production of molten metallic products at the cathode and oxygen gas at the anode. The effect of anode material, sweep rate, and electrolyte composition on the electrochemical behavior was investigated and implications for scale-up are considered. The activity and stability of the candidate anode materials as well as the effect of the electrolyte composition were determined. Additionally, ex-situ capture and analysis of the anode gas to calculate the current efficiency under different voltages, currents and melt chemistries was carried out.

  17. The Moon as a recorder of organic evolution in the early solar system: a lunar regolith analog study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matthewman, Richard; Court, Richard W; Crawford, Ian A; Jones, Adrian P; Joy, Katherine H; Sephton, Mark A

    2015-02-01

    The organic record of Earth older than ∼3.8 Ga has been effectively erased. Some insight is provided to us by meteorites as well as remote and direct observations of asteroids and comets left over from the formation of the Solar System. These primitive objects provide a record of early chemical evolution and a sample of material that has been delivered to Earth's surface throughout the past 4.5 billion years. Yet an effective chronicle of organic evolution on all Solar System objects, including that on planetary surfaces, is more difficult to find. Fortunately, early Earth would not have been the only recipient of organic matter-containing objects in the early Solar System. For example, a recently proposed model suggests the possibility that volatiles, including organic material, remain archived in buried paleoregolith deposits intercalated with lava flows on the Moon. Where asteroids and comets allow the study of processes before planet formation, the lunar record could extend that chronicle to early biological evolution on the planets. In this study, we use selected free and polymeric organic materials to assess the hypothesis that organic matter can survive the effects of heating in the lunar regolith by overlying lava flows. Results indicate that the presence of lunar regolith simulant appears to promote polymerization and, therefore, preservation of organic matter. Once polymerized, the mineral-hosted newly formed organic network is relatively protected from further thermal degradation. Our findings reveal the thermal conditions under which preservation of organic matter on the Moon is viable.

  18. Allochthonous Addition of Meteoritic Organics to the Lunar Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas-Keprta, K. L.; Clemett, S.; Ross, D. K.; Le, L.; Rahman, Z.; McKay, D. S.; Gibson, E. K.; Gonzalez, C.

    2013-01-01

    Preparation of lunar samples 74220,861 was discussed in detail in [3, 4]. Our analysis sequence was as follows: optical microscopy, UV fluorescence imaging, -Raman, FESEM-EDX imaging and mapping, FETEMEDX imaging and mapping of a Focused Ion Beam (FIB) extracted section, and NanoSIMs analysis. We observed fluffytextured C-rich regions of interest (ROI) on three different volcanic glass beads. Each ROI was several m2 in size and fluoresced when exposed to UV. Using FESEM/EDX, the largest ROI measured 36 m and was located on an edge of a plateau located on the uppermost surface of the bead. The ROI was covered on one edge by a siliceous filament emanating from the plateau surface indicating it was attached to the bead while on the Moon. EDX mapping of the ROI shows it is composed primarily of heterogeneously distributed C. Embedded with the carbonaceous phase are localized concentrations of Si, Fe, Al and Ti indicating the presence of glass and/or minerals grains. -Raman showed strong D- and G-bands and their associated second order bands; intensity and location of these bands indicates the carbonaceous matter is structurally disorganized. A TEM thin section was extracted from the surface of a glass bead using FIB microscopy. High resolution TEM imaging and selected area electron diffraction demonstrate the carbonaceous layer to be amorphous; it lacked any long or short range order characteristic of micro- or nanocrystalline graphite. Additionally TEM imaging also revealed the presence of submicron mineral grains, typically < 50 nm in size, dispersed within the carbonaceous layer. NanoSIMs data will be presented and discussed at the meeting. Given the noted similarities between the carbonaceous matter present on 74220 glass beads and meteoritic kerogen, we suggest the allochthonous addition of meteoritic organics as the most probable source for the C-rich ROIs.

  19. Regolith thickness at the Chang'E-3 landing site from the Lunar Penetrating Radar and impact craters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fa, W.; Zhu, M.-H.; Liu, T.

    2015-10-01

    The Chang'E-3 lunar penetrating radar (LPR) observations reveal a newly formed regolith layer (<1 m), an ejecta layer (~2-6 m), and a palaeoregolith layer (~4-9 m) from the surface to a depth of ~ 20 m. The thicknesses of the newly formed regolith layer and the palaeoregolith layer are consistent with the estimations based on the excavation depth and morphology of small fresh craters.

  20. A combined model of heat and mass transfer for the in situ extraction of volatile water from lunar regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reiss, P.

    2018-05-01

    Chemical analysis of lunar soil samples often involves thermal processing to extract their volatile constituents, such as loosely adsorbed water. For the characterization of volatiles and their bonding mechanisms it is important to determine their desorption temperature. However, due to the low thermal diffusivity of lunar regolith, it might be difficult to reach a uniform heat distribution in a sample that is larger than only a few particles. Furthermore, the mass transport through such a sample is restricted, which might lead to a significant delay between actual desorption and measurable outgassing of volatiles from the sample. The entire volatiles extraction process depends on the dynamically changing heat and mass transfer within the sample, and is influenced by physical parameters such as porosity, tortuosity, gas density, temperature and pressure. To correctly interpret measurements of the extracted volatiles, it is important to understand the interaction between heat transfer, sorption, and gas transfer through the sample. The present paper discusses the molecular kinetics and mechanisms that are involved in the thermal extraction process and presents a combined parametrical computation model to simulate this process. The influence of water content on the gas diffusivity and thermal diffusivity is discussed and the issue of possible resorption of desorbed molecules within the sample is addressed. Based on the multi-physical computation model, a case study for the ProSPA instrument for in situ analysis of lunar volatiles is presented, which predicts relevant dynamic process parameters, such as gas pressure and process duration.

  1. Extraction of Water from Martian Regolith Simulant via Open Reactor Concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trunek, Andrew J.; Linne, Diane L.; Kleinhenz, Julie E.; Bauman, Steven W.

    2018-01-01

    To demonstrate proof of concept water extraction from simulated Martian regolith, an open reactor design is presented along with experimental results. The open reactor concept avoids sealing surfaces and complex moving parts. In an abrasive environment like the Martian surface, those reactor elements would be difficult to maintain and present a high probability of failure. A general lunar geotechnical simulant was modified by adding borax decahydrate (Na2B4O7·10H2O) (BDH) to mimic the 3 percent water content of hydrated salts in near surface soils on Mars. A rotating bucket wheel excavated the regolith from a source bin and deposited the material onto an inclined copper tray, which was fitted with heaters and a simple vibration system. The combination of vibration, tilt angle and heat was used to separate and expose as much regolith surface area as possible to liberate the water contained in the hydrated minerals, thereby increasing the efficiency of the system. The experiment was conducted in a vacuum system capable of maintaining a Martian like atmosphere. Evolved water vapor was directed to a condensing system using the ambient atmosphere as a sweep gas. The water vapor was condensed and measured. Processed simulant was captured in a collection bin and weighed in real time. The efficiency of the system was determined by comparing pre- and post-processing soil mass along with the volume of water captured.

  2. Development and mechanical properties of structural materials from lunar simulants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desai, Chandra S.; Girdner, K.; Saadatmanesh, H.; Allen, T.

    1991-01-01

    Development of the technologies for manufacture of structural and construction materials on the Moon, utilizing local lunar soil (regolith), without the use of water, is an important element for habitats and explorations in space. Here, it is vital that the mechanical behavior such as strength and flexural properties, fracture toughness, ductility and deformation characteristics be defined toward establishment of the ranges of engineering applications of the materials developed. The objective is to describe the research results in two areas for the above goal: (1) liquefaction of lunar simulant (at about 100 C) with different additives (fibers, powders, etc.); and (2) development and use of a new triaxial test device in which lunar simulants are first compressed under cycles of loading, and then tested with different vacuums and initial confining or in situ stress.

  3. Estimates of Sputter Yields of Solar-Wind Heavy Ions of Lunar Regolith Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barghouty, Abdulmasser F.; Adams, James H., Jr.

    2008-01-01

    At energies of approximately 1 keV/amu, solar-wind protons and heavy ions interact with the lunar surface materials via a number of microscopic interactions that include sputtering. Solar-wind induced sputtering is a main mechanism by which the composition of the topmost layers of the lunar surface can change, dynamically and preferentially. This work concentrates on sputtering induced by solar-wind heavy ions. Sputtering associated with slow (speeds the electrons speed in its first Bohr orbit) and highly charged ions are known to include both kinetic and potential sputtering. Potential sputtering enjoys some unique characteristics that makes it of special interest to lunar science and exploration. Unlike the yield from kinetic sputtering where simulation and approximation schemes exist, the yield from potential sputtering is not as easy to estimate. This work will present a preliminary numerical scheme designed to estimate potential sputtering yields from reactions relevant to this aspect of solar-wind lunar-surface coupling.

  4. Simulations of Water Migration in the Lunar Exosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hurley, D.; Benna, M.; Mahaffy, P. R.; Elphic, R. C.; Goldstein, D. B.

    2014-12-01

    We perform modeling and analysis of water in the lunar exosphere. There were two controlled experiments of water interactions with the surface of the Moon observed by the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) Neutral Mass Spectrometer (NMS). The Chang'e 3 landing on the Moon on 14 Dec 2013 putatively sprayed ~120 kg of water on the surface on the Moon at a mid-morning local time. Observations by LADEE near the noon meridian on six of the orbits in the 24 hours following the landing constrain the propagation of water vapor. Further, on 4 Apr 2014, LADEE's Orbital Maintenance Manuever (OMM) #21 sprayed the surface of the Moon with an estimated 0.73 kg of water in the pre-dawn sector. Observations of this maneuver and later in the day constrain the adsorption and release at dawn of adsorbed materials. Using the Chang'e 3 exhaust plume and LADEE's OMM-21 as control experiments, we set limits to the adsorption and thermalization of water with lunar regolith. This enables us to predict the efficiency of the migration of water as a delivery mechanism to the lunar poles. Then we simulate the migration of water through the lunar exosphere using the rate of sporadic inputs from meteoritic sources (Benna et al., this session). Simulations predict the amount of water adsorbed to the surface of the Moon and the effective delivery rate to the lunar polar cold traps.

  5. The properties of the lunar regolith at Chang'e-3 landing site: A study based on LPR data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, J.; Su, Y.; Xing, S.; Ding, C.; Li, C.

    2015-12-01

    In situ sampling from surface is difficult in the exploration of planets and sometimes radar sensing is a better choice. The properties of the surface material such as permittivity, density and depth can be obtained by a surface penetrating radar. The Chang'e-3 (CE-3) landed in the northern Mare Imbrium and a Lunar Penetrating Radar (LPR) is carried on the Yutu rover to detect the shallow structure of the lunar crust and the properties of the lunar regolith, which will give us a close look at the lunar subsurface. We process the radar data in a way which consist two steps: the regular preprocessing step and migration step. The preprocessing part includes zero time correction, de-wow, gain compensation, DC removal, geometric positioning. Then we combine all radar data obtained at the time the rover was moving, and use FIR filter to reduce the noise in the radar image with a pass band frequency range 200MHz-600MHz. A normal radar image is obtained after the preprocessing step. Using a nonlinear least squares fitting method, we fit the most hyperbolas in the radar image which are caused by the buried objects or rocks in the regolith and estimate the EM wave propagation velocity and the permittivity of the regolith. For there is a fixed mathematical relationship between dielectric constant and density, the density profile of the lunar regolith is also calculated. It seems that the permittivity and density at the landing site is larger than we thought before. Finally with a model of variable velocities, we apply the Kirchhoff migration method widely used in the seismology to transform the the unfocused space-time LPR image to a focused one showing the object's (most are stones) true location and size. From the migrated image, we find that the regolith depth in the landing site is smaller than previous study and the stone content rises rapidly with depth. Our study suggests that the landing site is a young region and the reworked history of the surface is short, which is

  6. Chandrayaan-2 dual-frequency SAR: Further investigation into lunar water and regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Putrevu, Deepak; Das, Anup; Vachhani, J. G.; Trivedi, Sanjay; Misra, Tapan

    2016-01-01

    The Space Applications Centre (SAC), one of the major centers of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), is developing a high resolution, dual-frequency Synthetic Aperture Radar as a science payload on Chandrayaan-2, ISRO's second moon mission. With this instrument, ISRO aims to further the ongoing studies of the data from S-band MiniSAR onboard Chandrayaan-1 (India) and the MiniRF of Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (USA). The SAR instrument has been configured to operate with both L- and S-bands, sharing a common antenna. The S-band SAR will provide continuity to the MiniSAR data, whereas L-band is expected to provide deeper penetration of the lunar regolith. The system will have a selectable slant-range resolution from 2 m to 75 m, along with standalone (L or S) and simultaneous (L and S) modes of imaging. Various features of the instrument like hybrid and full-polarimetry, a wide range of imaging incidence angles (∼10° to ∼35°) and the high spatial resolution will greatly enhance our understanding of surface properties especially in the polar regions of the Moon. The system will also help in resolving some of the ambiguities in interpreting high values of Circular Polarization Ratio (CPR) observed in MiniSAR data. The added information from full-polarimetric data will allow greater confidence in the results derived particularly in detecting the presence (and estimating the quantity) of water-ice in the polar craters. Being a planetary mission, the L&S-band SAR for Chandrayaan-2 faced stringent limits on mass, power and data rate (15 kg, 100 W and 160 Mbps respectively), irrespective of any of the planned modes of operation. This necessitated large-scale miniaturization, extensive use of on-board processing, and devices and techniques to conserve power. This paper discusses the scientific objectives which drive the requirement of a lunar SAR mission and presents the configuration of the instrument, along with a description of a number of features of the

  7. Production of Synthetic Lunar Simulants, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Zybek Advanced Products has proven the ability to produce industrial quantities of lunar simulant materials, including glass, agglutinate and melt breccias. These...

  8. Quantitative EPMA of Nano-Phase Iron-Silicides in Apollo 16 Lunar Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gopon, P.; Fournelle, J.; Valley, J. W.; Pinard, P. T.; Sobol, P.; Horn, W.; Spicuzza, M.; Llovet, X.; Richter, S.

    2013-12-01

    Until recently, quantitative EPMA of phases under a few microns in size has been extremely difficult. In order to achieve analytical volumes to analyze sub-micron features, accelerating voltages between 5 and 8 keV need to be used. At these voltages the normally used K X-ray transitions (of higher Z elements) are no longer excited, and we must rely of outer shell transitions (L and M). These outer shell transitions are difficult to use for quantitative EPMA because they are strongly affected by different bonding environments, the error associated with their mass attenuation coefficients (MAC), and their proximity to absorption edges. These problems are especially prevalent for the transition metals, because of the unfilled M5 electron shell where the Lα transition originates. Previous studies have tried to overcome these limitations by using standards that almost exactly matched their unknowns. This, however, is cumbersome and requires accurate knowledge of the composition of your sample beforehand, as well as an exorbitant number of well characterized standards. Using a 5 keV electron beam and utilizing non-standard X-ray transitions (Ll) for the transition metals, we are able to conduct accurate quantitative analyses of phases down to ~300nm. The Ll transition in the transition metals behaves more like a core-state transition, and unlike the Lα/β lines, is unaffected by bonding effects and does not lie near an absorption edge. This allows for quantitative analysis using standards do not have to exactly match the unknown. In our case pure metal standards were used for all elements except phosphorus. We present here data on iron-silicides in two Apollo 16 regolith grains. These plagioclase grains (A6-7 and A6-8) were collected between North and South Ray Craters, in the lunar highlands, and thus are associated with one or more large impact events. We report the presence of carbon, nickel, and phosphorus (in order of abundance) in these iron-silicide phases

  9. Additive Construction using Basalt Regolith Fines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Robert P.; Sibille, Laurent; Hintze, Paul E.; Lippitt, Thomas C.; Mantovani, James G.; Nugent, Matthew W.; Townsend, Ivan I.

    2014-01-01

    Planetary surfaces are often covered in regolith (crushed rock), whose geologic origin is largely basalt. The lunar surface is made of small-particulate regolith and areas of boulders located in the vicinity of craters. Regolith composition also varies with location, reflecting the local bedrock geology and the nature and efficiency of the micrometeorite-impact processes. In the lowland mare areas (suitable for habitation), the regolith is composed of small granules (20 - 100 microns average size) of mare basalt and volcanic glass. Impacting micrometeorites may cause local melting, and the formation of larger glassy particles, and this regolith may contain 10-80% glass. Studies of lunar regolith are traditionally conducted with lunar regolith simulant (reconstructed soil with compositions patterned after the lunar samples returned by Apollo). The NASA Kennedy Space Center (KSC) Granular Mechanics & Regolith Operations (GMRO) lab has identified a low fidelity but economical geo-technical simulant designated as Black Point-1 (BP-1). It was found at the site of the Arizona Desert Research and Technology Studies (RATS) analog field test site at the Black Point lava flow in adjacent basalt quarry spoil mounds. This paper summarizes activities at KSC regarding the utilization of BP-1 basalt regolith and comparative work with lunar basalt simulant JSC-1A as a building material for robotic additive construction of large structures. In an effort to reduce the import or in-situ fabrication of binder additives, we focused this work on in-situ processing of regolith for construction in a single-step process after its excavation. High-temperature melting of regolith involves techniques used in glassmaking and casting (with melts of lower density and higher viscosity than those of metals), producing basaltic glass with high durability and low abrasive wear. Most Lunar simulants melt at temperatures above 1100 C, although melt processing of terrestrial regolith at 1500 C is not

  10. Regolith and Environment Science and Oxygen and Lunar Volatile Extraction (RESOLVE): Lunar Advanced Volatile Analysis (LAVA) Capillary Fluid Dynamic Restriction Effects on Gas Chromatography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzalez, Marianne; Quinn, Jacqueline; Captain, Janine; Santiago-Bond, Josephine; Starr, Stanley

    2015-01-01

    The Resource Prospector (RP) mission with the Regolith and Environment Science and Oxygen Lunar Volatile Extraction (RESOLVE) payload aims to show the presence of water in lunar regolith, and establish a proving ground for NASAs mission to Mars. One of the analysis is performed by the Lunar Advanced Volatiles Analysis (LAVA) subsystem, which consists of a fluid network that facilitates the transport of volatile samples to a gas chromatograph and mass spectrometer (GC-MS) instrument. The understanding of fluid dynamics directed from the GC to the MS is important due to the influence of flow rates and pressures that affect the accuracy of and prevent the damage to the overall GC-MS instrument. The micro-scale capillary fluid network within the GC alone has various lengths and inner-diameters; therefore, determination of pressure differentials and flow rates are difficult to model computationally, with additional complexity from the vacuum conditions in space and lack of a lunar atmosphere. A series of tests were performed on an experimental set-up of the system where the inner diameters of the GC transfer line connecting to the MS were varied. The effect on chromatography readings were also studied by applying these lines onto a GC instrument. It was found that a smaller inner diameter transfer line resulted in a lower flow rate, as well as a lower pressure differential across the thermal conductivity detector (TCD) unit of the GC and a negligible pressure drop across the mock-up capillary column. The chromatography was affected with longer retention times and broader peak integrations. It was concluded that a 0.050 mm inner diameter line still proved most suitable for the systems flow rate preferences. In addition, it was evident that this small transfer line portrayed some expense to GC signal characteristics and the wait time for steady-state operation.

  11. Development and mechanical properties of construction materials from lunar simulant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desai, Chandra S.

    1992-01-01

    Development of versatile engineering materials from locally available materials in space is an important step toward the establishment of outposts on the Moon and Mars. Development of the technologies for manufacture of structural and construction materials on the Moon, utilizing local lunar soil (regolith), without the use of water, is an important element for habitats and explorations in space. It is also vital that the mechanical behavior such as strength and tensile, flexural properties, fracture toughness, ductility, and deformation characteristics are defined toward establishment of the ranges of engineering applications of the materials developed. The objectives include two areas: (1) thermal 'liquefaction' of lunar simulant (at about 1100 C) with different additives (fibers, powders, etc.), and (2) development and use of a new triaxial test device in which lunar simulants are first compacted under cycles of loading, and then tested with different vacuums and initial confining or in situ stress. Details of the development of intermediate ceramic composites (ICC) and testing for their flexural and compression characteristics were described in various reports and papers. The subject of behavior of compacted simulant under vacuum was described in previous progress reports and publications; since the presently available device allows vacuum levels up to only 10(exp -4) torr, it is recommended that a vacuum pump that can allow higher levels of vacuum be utilized for further investigation.

  12. Heat Pipe Solar Receiver for Oxygen Production of Lunar Regolith, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Researchers have determined that lunar soil contains approximately 43% oxygen in the lunar soil oxides, which could be extracted to provide breathable oxygen for...

  13. Development and mechanical properties of structural materials from lunar simulant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desai, Chandra S.

    1991-01-01

    Development of versatile engineering materials from locally available materials in space is an important step toward establishment of outposts such as on the moon and Mars. Here development of the technologies for manufacture of structural and construction materials on the moon, utilizing local lunar soil (regolith), without the use of water, is an important element for habitats and explorations in space. It is also vital that the mechanical behavior such as strength and flexural properties, fracture toughness, ductility, and deformation characteristics are defined toward establishment of the ranges of engineering applications of the materials developed. The objectives include two areas: (1) thermal liquefaction of lunar simulant (at about 1100 C) with different additives (fibers, powders, etc.); and (2) development and use of a traxial test device in which lunar simulants are first compacted under cycles of loading, and then tested with different vacuums and initial confining or insitu stress. The second area was described in previous progress reports and publications; since the presently available device allows vacuum levels up to only 10(exp -4) torr, it is recommended that a vacuum pump that can allow higher levels of vacuum is acquired.

  14. Armstrong practices in Lunar Module simulator

    Science.gov (United States)

    1969-01-01

    Neil A. Armstrong, Commander for the Apollo 11 Moon-landing mission, practices for the historic event in a Lunar Module simulator in the Flight Crew Training building at KSC. Accompanying Armstrong on the Moon flight will be Command Module Pilot Michael Collins and Lunar Module Pilot Edwin E. Aldrin Jr.

  15. Laboratory simulations of lunar darkening processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hapke, B.

    1993-01-01

    It was clear long before the Apollo missions that a darkening process occurs on the moon. However, its nature remains controversial and elusive. Current evidence implies that the darkening is associated with, and is probably caused by, submicroscopic metallic iron in the regolith. Questions discussed at the workshop include: (1) under what conditions will impact vitrification produce a dark glass; (2) what is the role of the submicroscopic metallic Fe (SMFe) in the lunar darkening process; (3) how is the SMFe produced; (4) is there a significant component of the regolith that has been deposited from a vapor, if so, what form is it in, and how can it be recognized, what are its effects on the chemistry of the regolith; (5) how do the processes of impact vitrification, vaporization, sputtering, and SMFe production vary as a function of distance from the sun and location in planetary magnetospheres; and (6) what other processes might affect optical properties. Ices have lower melting and boiling temperatures and sputtering yields several orders of magnitude larger than silicates. Hence, analogous processes will occur to an even greater extent on satellites of the outer planets, and these questions are relevant to those bodies as well.

  16. University of Central Florida / Deep Space Industries Asteroid Regolith Simulants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Britt, Daniel; Covey, Steven D.; Schultz, Cody

    2017-10-01

    Introduction: The University of Central Florida (UCF), in partnership with Deep Space Industries (DSI) are working under a NASA Phase 2 SBIR contract to develop and produce a family of asteroid regolith simulants for use in research, engineering, and mission operations testing. We base simulant formulas on the mineralogy, particle size, and physical characteristics of CI, CR, CM, C2, CV, and L-Chondrite meteorites. The advantage in simulating meteorites is that the vast majority of meteoritic materials are common rock forming minerals that are available in commercial quantities. While formulas are guided by the meteorites our approach is one of constrained maximization under the limitations of safety, cost, source materials, and ease of handling. In all cases our goal is to deliver a safe, high fidelity analog at moderate cost.Source Materials, Safety, and Biohazards: A critical factor in any useful simulant is to minimize handling risks for biohazards or toxicity. All the terrestrial materials proposed for these simulants were reviewed for potential toxicity. Of particular interest is the organic component of volatile rich carbonaceous chondrites which contain polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), some of which are known carcinogens and mutagens. Our research suggests that we can maintain rough chemical fidelity by substituting much safer sub-bituminous coal as our organic analog. A second safety consideration is the choice of serpentine group materials. While most serpentine polymorphs are quite safe we avoid fibrous chrysotile because of its asbestos content. Terrestrial materials identified as inputs for our simulants are common rock forming minerals that are available in commercial quantities. These include olivine, pyroxene, plagioclase feldspar, smectite, serpentine, saponite, pyrite, and magnetite in amounts that are appropriate for each type. For CI's and CR’s, their olivines tend to be Fo100 which is rare on Earth. We have substituted Fo90 olivine

  17. Zinnia Germination and Lunar Soil Amendment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reese, Laura

    2017-01-01

    Germination testing was performed to determine the best method for germinating zinnias. This method will be used to attempt to germinate the zinnia seeds produced in space. It was found that seed shape may be critically important in determining whether a seed will germinate or not. The ability of compost and worm castings to remediate lunar regolith simulant for plant growth was tested. It was found that neither treatment effectively improves plant growth in lunar regolith simulant. A potential method of improving lunar regolith simulant by mixing it with arcillite was discovered.

  18. Potential of Probing the Lunar Regolith using Rover-Mounted Ground Penetrating Radar: Moses Lake Dune Field Analog Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horz, F.; Heggy, E.; Fong, T.; Kring, D.; Deans, M.; Anglade, A.; Mahiouz, K.; Bualat, M.; Lee, P.; Bluethmann, W.

    2009-01-01

    Probing radars have been widely recognized by the science community to be an efficient tool to explore lunar subsurface providing a unique capability to address several scientific and operational issues. A wideband (200 to 1200 MHz) Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) mounted on a surface rover can provide high vertical resolution and probing depth from few tens of centimeters to few tens of meters depending on the sounding frequency and the ground conductivity. This in term can provide a better understand regolith thickness, elemental iron concentration (including ilmenite), volatile presence, structural anomalies and fracturing. All those objectives are of important significance for understanding the local geology and potential sustainable resources for future landing sites in particular exploring the thickness, structural heterogeneity and potential volatiles presence in the lunar regolith. While the operation and data collection of GPR is a straightforward case for most terrestrial surveys, it is a challenging task for remote planetary study especially on robotic platforms due to the complexity of remote operation in rough terrains and the data collection constrains imposed by the mechanical motion of the rover and limitation in data transfer. Nevertheless, Rover mounted GPR can be of great support to perform systematic subsurface surveys for a given landing site as it can provide scientific and operational support in exploring subsurface resources and sample collections which can increase the efficiency of the EVA activities for potential human crews as part of the NASA Constellation Program. In this study we attempt to explore the operational challenges and their impact on the EVA scientific return for operating a rover mounted GPR in support of potential human activity on the moon. In this first field study, we mainly focused on the ability of GPR to support subsurface sample collection and explore shallow subsurface volatiles.

  19. APOLLO 10 ASTRONAUT ENTERS LUNAR MODULE SIMULATOR

    Science.gov (United States)

    1969-01-01

    Apollo 10 lunar module pilot Eugene A. Cernan prepares to enter the lunar module simulator at the Flight Crew Training Building at the NASA Spaceport. Cernan, Apollo 10 commander Thomas P. Stafford and John W. Young, command module pilot, are to be launched May 18 on the Apollo 10 mission, a dress rehearsal for a lunar landing later this summer. Cernan and Stafford are to detach the lunar module and drop to within 10 miles of the moon's surface before rejoining Young in the command/service module. Looking on as Cernan puts on his soft helmet is Snoopy, the lovable cartoon mutt whose name will be the lunar module code name during the Apollo 10 flight. The command/service module is to bear the code name Charlie Brown.

  20. Instrument for Solvent Extraction and Analysis (ISEE) of Organics from Regolith Simulant Using Supercritical Fluid Extraction and Chromatography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franco, Carolina; Hintze, Paul E.

    2017-01-01

    ISEE is an instrument with the potential to perform extractions from regolith found on the surface of asteroids and planets, followed by characterization and quantitation of the extracts using supercritical fluid extraction (SFE) and chromatography (SFC). SFE is a developed technique proven to extract a wide range of organic compounds. SFC is similar to High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) but has the advantage of performing chiral separations without needing to derivatize the chiral compounds. CO2 will be the solvent for both stages as it is readily available in the Mars atmosphere. ISEE will capture CO2 from the environment, and use it for SFE and SFC. If successful, this would allow ISEE to perform analysis of organic compounds without using consumables. This paper will present results on a preliminary, proof-of-principle effort to use SFE and SFC to extract and analyze lunar regolith simulant spiked with organic compounds representing a range of organics that ISEE would expect to characterize. An optimization of variables for the extraction of the organics from the spiked regolith was successfully developed, using 138 bar pressure and 40 C temperature. The extraction flow rate was optimized at 2% SLPM with 30% methanol modifier. The extractions were successful with a value of 77.3+/- 0.9% of organics extracted. However, the recovery of organics after the extraction was very low with only 48.5+/-14.2%. Moreover, three columns were selected to analyze multiple samples at a time; two of them are Viridis HSS C18 SB and Torus DIOL, and the third column, specific for chiral separations, has not yet been selected yet.

  1. Mars Gardens in the University - Red Thumbs: Growing Vegetables in Martian regolith simulant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guinan, Edward Francis

    2018-01-01

    Over the next few decades NASA and private enterprise missions plan to send manned missions to Mars with the ultimate aim to establish a permanent human presence on this planet. For a self-sustaining colony on Mars it will be necessary to provide food by growing plants in sheltered greenhouses on the Martian surface. As part of an undergraduate student project in Astrobiology at Villanova University, experiments are being carried out, testing how various plants grow in Martian regolith. A wide sample of plants are being grown and tested in Mars regolith simulant commercially available from The Martian Garden (TheMartian Garden.com). This Mars regolith simulant is based on Mojave Mars Simulant (MMS) developed by NASA and JPL for the Mars Phoenix mission. The MMS is based on the Mojave Saddleback basalt similar that used by JPL/NASA. Additional reagents were added to this iron rich basalt to bring the chemical content close to actual Mars regolith. The MMS used is an approximately 90% similar to regolith found on the surface of Mars - excluding poisonous perchlorates commonly found on actual Mars surface.The students have selected various vegetables and herbs to grow and test. These include carrots, spinach, dandelions, kale, soy beans, peas, onions, garlic and of course potatoes and sweet potatoes. Plants were tested in various growing conditions, using different fertilizers, and varying light conditions and compared with identical “control plants” grown in Earth soil / humus. The results of the project will be discussed from an education view point as well as from usefulness for fundamental research.We thank The Martian Garden for providing Martian regolith simulant at education discounted prices.

  2. Human Estimation of Slope, Distance, and Height of Terrain in Simulated Lunar Conditions

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Oravetz, Christopher

    2009-01-01

    .... These unique lunar conditions are expected to affect human perception: the lack of an atmosphere, the non-Lambertian regolith reflectance properties, the lack of familiar objects, and the physiological effects of reduced gravity...

  3. Astronaut Neil Armstrong participates in lunar surface simulation training

    Science.gov (United States)

    1969-01-01

    Astronaut Neil A. Armstrong, wearing an Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU), participates in lunar surface simulation training on April 18, 1969 in bldg 9, Manned Spacecraft Center. Armstrong is the prime crew commander of the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission. Here, he is standing on Lunar Module mockup foot pad preparing to ascend steps.

  4. Beneficiation of lunar ilmenite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz, Joaquin

    1991-01-01

    One of the most important commodities lacking in the moon is free oxygen which is required for life and used extensively for propellent. Free oxygen, however, can be obtained by liberating it from the oxides and silicates that form the lunar rocks and regolith. Ilmenite (FeTiO3) is considered one of the leading candidates for production of oxygen because it can be reduced with a reasonable amount of energy and it is an abundant mineral in the lunar regolith and many mare basalts. In order to obtain oxygen from ilmenite, a method must be developed to beneficiate ilmenite from lunar material. Two possible techniques are electrostatic or magnetic methods. Both methods have complications because lunar ilmenite completely lacks Fe(3+). Magnetic methods were tested on eucrite meteorites, which are a good chemical simulant for low Ti mare basalts. The ilmenite yields in the experiments were always very low and the eucrite had to be crushed to xxxx. These data suggest that magnetic separation of ilmenite from fine grain lunar basalts would not be cost effective. Presently, experiments are being performed with electrostatic separators, and lunar regolith is being waited for so that simulants do not have to be employed.

  5. Production of continuous glass fiber using lunar simulant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Dennis S.; Ethridge, Edwin C.; Curreri, Peter A.

    1991-01-01

    The processing parameters and mechanical properties of glass fibers pulled from simulated lunar basalt are tested. The simulant was prepared using a plasma technique. The composition is representative of a low titanium mare basalt (Apollo sample 10084). Lunar gravity experiments are to be performed utilizing parabolic aircraft free-fall maneuvers which yield 30 seconds of 1/6-g per maneuver.

  6. Phosphorus Adsorption and Desorption Properties of Minnesota Basalt Lunar Simulant and Lunar Glass Simulant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutter, Brad; Hossner, Lloyd R.; Ming, Douglas W.

    1996-01-01

    Phosphorus (P) adsorption and desorption characteristics of Minnesota Basalt Lunar Simulant (MBLS) and Lunar Glass Simulant (LGS) were evaluated. Results of P interactions with lunar simulants indicated that mineral and glass components adsorbed between 50 and 70% of the applied P and that between 85 and 100% of the applied P was desorbed. The Extended Freundlich equation best described the adsorption data (r(sup 2) = 0.92), whereas the Raven/Hossner equation best described the desorption data ((r(sup 2) = 0.97). Kinetic desorption results indicated that MBLS and LGS released most of their P within 15 h. The expanded Elovich equation fit the data best at shorter times while t/Q(sub DT) equation had a better fit at longer times. These results indicate that P does not strongly adsorb to the two simulants and that any P that was adsorbed was readily desorbed in the presence of anion exchange resin. This work suggests that multiple small applications of P (10-20 mg P/kg) should be added to the simulants to ensure adequate solution P for plant uptake and efficient use of P fertilizer.

  7. Improved Data Reduction Algorithm for the Needle Probe Method Applied to In-Situ Thermal Conductivity Measurements of Lunar and Planetary Regoliths

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagihara, S.; Hedlund, M.; Zacny, K.; Taylor, P. T.

    2013-01-01

    The needle probe method (also known as the' hot wire' or 'line heat source' method) is widely used for in-situ thermal conductivity measurements on soils and marine sediments on the earth. Variants of this method have also been used (or planned) for measuring regolith on the surfaces of extra-terrestrial bodies (e.g., the Moon, Mars, and comets). In the near-vacuum condition on the lunar and planetary surfaces, the measurement method used on the earth cannot be simply duplicated, because thermal conductivity of the regolith can be approximately 2 orders of magnitude lower. In addition, the planetary probes have much greater diameters, due to engineering requirements associated with the robotic deployment on extra-terrestrial bodies. All of these factors contribute to the planetary probes requiring much longer time of measurement, several tens of (if not over a hundred) hours, while a conventional terrestrial needle probe needs only 1 to 2 minutes. The long measurement time complicates the surface operation logistics of the lander. It also negatively affects accuracy of the thermal conductivity measurement, because the cumulative heat loss along the probe is no longer negligible. The present study improves the data reduction algorithm of the needle probe method by shortening the measurement time on planetary surfaces by an order of magnitude. The main difference between the new scheme and the conventional one is that the former uses the exact mathematical solution to the thermal model on which the needle probe measurement theory is based, while the latter uses an approximate solution that is valid only for large times. The present study demonstrates the benefit of the new data reduction technique by applying it to data from a series of needle probe experiments carried out in a vacuum chamber on JSC-1A lunar regolith stimulant. The use of the exact solution has some disadvantage, however, in requiring three additional parameters, but two of them (the diameter and the

  8. Measurements of Regolith Simulant Thermal Conductivity Under Asteroid and Mars Surface Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryan, A. J.; Christensen, P. R.

    2017-12-01

    Laboratory measurements have been necessary to interpret thermal data of planetary surfaces for decades. We present a novel radiometric laboratory method to determine temperature-dependent thermal conductivity of complex regolith simulants under rough to high vacuum and across a wide range of temperatures. This method relies on radiometric temperature measurements instead of contact measurements, eliminating the need to disturb the sample with thermal probes. We intend to determine the conductivity of grains that are up to 2 cm in diameter and to parameterize the effects of angularity, sorting, layering, composition, and eventually cementation. We present the experimental data and model results for a suite of samples that were selected to isolate and address regolith physical parameters that affect bulk conductivity. Spherical glass beads of various sizes were used to measure the effect of size frequency distribution. Spherical beads of polypropylene and well-rounded quartz sand have respectively lower and higher solid phase thermal conductivities than the glass beads and thus provide the opportunity to test the sensitivity of bulk conductivity to differences in solid phase conductivity. Gas pressure in our asteroid experimental chambers is held at 10^-6 torr, which is sufficient to negate gas thermal conduction in even our coarsest of samples. On Mars, the atmospheric pressure is such that the mean free path of the gas molecules is comparable to the pore size for many regolith particulates. Thus, subtle variations in pore size and/or atmospheric pressure can produce large changes in bulk regolith conductivity. For each sample measured in our martian environmental chamber, we repeat thermal measurement runs at multiple pressures to observe this behavior. Finally, we present conductivity measurements of angular basaltic simulant that is physically analogous to sand and gravel that may be present on Bennu. This simulant was used for OSIRIS-REx TAGSAM Sample Return

  9. Kinetic and Potential Sputtering of Lunar Regolith: The Contribution of the Heavy Highly Charged (Minority) Solar Wind Ions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, F. W.; Barghouty, A. F.

    2012-01-01

    Solar wind sputtering of the lunar surface helps determine the composition of the lunar exosphere and contributes to surface weathering. To date, only the effects of the two dominant solar wind constituents, H+ and He+, have been considered. The heavier, less abundant solar wind constituents have much larger sputtering yields because they have greater mass (kinetic sputtering) and they are highly charged (potential sputtering) Their contribution to total sputtering can therefore be orders of magnitude larger than their relative abundances would suggest

  10. Low Force Penetration of Icy Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mantovani, J. G.; Galloway, G. M.; Zacny, K.

    2016-01-01

    A percussive cone penetrometer measures the strength of granular material by using percussion to deliver mechanical energy into the material. A percussive cone penetrometer was used in this study to penetrate a regolith ice mixture by breaking up ice and decompacting the regolith. As compared to a static cone penetrometer, percussion allows low reaction forces to push a penetrometer probe tip more easily into dry regolith in a low gravity environment from a planetary surface rover or a landed spacecraft. A percussive cone penetrates icy regolith at ice concentrations that a static cone cannot penetrate. In this study, the percussive penetrator was able to penetrate material under 65 N of down-force which could not be penetrated using a static cone under full body weight. This paper discusses using a percussive cone penetrometer to discern changes in the concentration of water-ice in a mixture of lunar regolith simulant and ice to a depth of one meter. The rate of penetration was found to be a function of the ice content and was not significantly affected by the down-force. The test results demonstrate that this method may be ideal for a small platform in a reduced gravity environment. However, there are some cases where the system may not be able to penetrate the icy regolith, and there is some risk of the probe tip becoming stuck so that it cannot be retracted. It is also shown that a percussive cone penetrometer could be used to prospect for water ice in regolith at concentrations as high as 8 by weight.

  11. Walking Wheel Design for Lunar Rove-Rand and Its Application Simulation Based on Virtual Lunar Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhao Yibing

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available The lunar rover design is the key problem of planet exploration. It is extraordinarily important for researchers to fully understand the lunar terrain and propose the reasonable lunar rover. In this paper, one new type of walking wheel modeled on impeller is presented based on vehicle terramechanics. The passive earth pressure of soil mechanics put forward by C. A. Coulomb is employed to obtain the wheel traction force. Some kinematics simulations are conducted for lunar rover model. Besides, this paper presents how to model lunar landing terrain containing typical statistic characteristic including craters and boulders; then, the second step is to construct basal lunar surface by using Brown Fractal Motion and the next is to add craters and boulders by means of known diameter algorithm and Random-create Diameter Algorithm. By means of importing 2D plain of lunar surface into UG, 3D parasolid is modeled and finally imported to ADAMS, which is available for lunar rover kinematics and dynamics simulation. Lastly, based on power spectrum curve of lunar terrain, the spectral characteristic of three different lunar terrain roughness is educed by using reverse engineering algorithm. Simulation results demonstrated the frequency of vibration mechanics properties of different roughness surfaces.

  12. The Use of Tribocharging in the Electrostatic Beneficiation of Lunar Simulant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trigwell, S.; Captain, J. G.; Arens, E. E.; Captain, J. E.; Quinn, J. W.; Calle, C. I.

    2007-01-01

    Any future lunar base and habitat must be constructed from strong dense materials in order to provide for thermal and radiation protection. Lunar soil may meet this need. Lunar regolith has high concentrations of aluminum, silicon, calcium, iron, sodium, and titanium oxides. Refinement or enrichment of specific minerals in the soil before it is chemically processed may be more desirable as it would reduce the size and energy requirements required to produce the virgin material and it may significantly reduce the process' complexity. Also, investigations into the potential production of breathable oxygen from oxidized mineral components are a major research initiative by NASA. In this study. the objective was to investigate the use of tribocharging to charge lunar simulants and pass them through a parallel plate separator to enrich different mineral fractions. This technique takes advantage of the high Lunar vacuum in which much higher voltages can be used on the separation plates than in air. Additionally, the Lunar g1avity, only being 1/6 that of Earth, allows the particles more separation time between the plates and therefore enhances separation. For the separation studies, two lunar stimulants were used. The first simulant was created in-house, labeled KSC-1. using commercially supplied (sieved to 325 mesh) materials, and was composed of 40 wt. % feldspar ((Na,K,Ca)AlSi3O8;SiO2), 40 wt. % olivine ((Mg,Fe)2SiO4), 10 wt. % ilmenite (FeTiO3). and 10 wt. % spodumene (LiAlSi2O6) (pyroxene). The advantage of the in-house mixture is that the composition can he varied to simulate different soil compositions from different areas on the moon. This simulant was used to show proof-of-concept using the designed separator in air. The second stimulant was JSC-1. used for the vacuum experiments. JSC-1 is principally basalts, containing phases of plagioclase. pyroxene. olivine, and ilmenite. The JSC-1 was sieved to provide a 50-75 micron size range to correlate with the mean

  13. Simulated Lunar Testing of Metabolic Heat Regenerated Temperature Swing Adsorption

    Science.gov (United States)

    Padilla, Sebastian A.; Bower, Chad E.; Iacomini, Christie S.; Paul, Heather L.

    2012-01-01

    Metabolic heat regenerated Temperature Swing Adsorption (MTSA) technology is being developed for thermal and carbon dioxide (CO2) control for a Portable Life Support System (PLSS), as well as water recycling. An Engineering Development Unit (EDU) of the MTSA Subassembly (MTSAS) was designed and assembled for optimized Martian operations, but also meets system requirements for lunar operations. For lunar operations the MTSA sorption cycle is driven via a vacuum swing between suit ventilation loop pressure and lunar vacuum. The focus of this effort was testing in a simulated lunar environment. This environment was simulated in Paragon's EHF vacuum chamber. The objective of the testing was to evaluate the full cycle performance of the MTSA Subassembly EDU, and to assess CO2 loading and pressure drop of the wash coated aluminum reticulated foam sorbent bed. Lunar environment testing proved out the feasibility of pure vacuum swing operation, making MTSA a technology that can be tested and used on the Moon prior to going to Mars. Testing demonstrated better than expected CO2 Nomenclature loading on the sorbent and nearly replicates the equilibrium data from the sorbent manufacturer. This exceeded any of the previous sorbent loading tests performed by Paragon. Subsequently, the increased performance of the sorbent bed design indicates future designs will require less mass and volume than the current EDU rendering MTSA as very competitive for Martian PLSS applications.

  14. Decameter-Scale Regolith Textures on Mercury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kreslavsky, M. A.; Zharkova, A. Yu.; Head, J. W.

    2018-05-01

    Like on the Moon, regolith gardening smooths the surface. Small craters are in equilibrium. “Elephant hide“ typical on the lunar slopes is infrequent on Mercury. Finely Textured Slope Patches have no analog on the Moon.

  15. Growth of cyanobacteria on Martian Regolith Simulant after exposure to vacuum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arai, Mayumi; Sato, Seigo; Ohmori, Masayuki; Tomita-Yokotani, Kaori; Hashimoto, Hirofumi; Yamashita, Masamichi

    Habitation on Mars is one of our challenges in this century. The growth of cyanobacteria on Martian Regolith Simulant (MRS) was studied with two species of terrestrial cyanobacteria, Nostoc, and one species of other cyanobacterium, Synechosystis. Their vacuum tolerances was examined in order to judge feasibility of the use of cyanobacteria to creat habitable environment on a distant planet. The viability of cyanobacteria tested was evaluated by the microscopic observation after staining by FDA (fluorescein diacetate). A part of them were also re-incubated again in a liquid culture medium, and viability and the chlorophyll production were examined in detail. Nostoc was found to grow for over 140 days with their having normal function of chlorophyll synthesis on the MRS. After the exposure to high vacuum environment (10-5 Pa) for a year, Nostoc sp. started growth. Chlorophyll was produced after this vacuum exposure as well. The A'MED (Arai's Mars Ecosystem Dome, A'MED) is designed to install on Mars for conducting agricultural production in it. We performed the fundamental experiment with MRS. These results show a possibility that cyanobacteria could adapt to MRS, and grow under the low pressure environment expected on Mars.

  16. A drilling tool design and in situ identification of planetary regolith mechanical parameters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Weiwei; Jiang, Shengyuan; Ji, Jie; Tang, Dewei

    2018-05-01

    The physical and mechanical properties as well as the heat flux of regolith are critical evidence in the study of planetary origin and evolution. Moreover, the mechanical properties of planetary regolith have great value for guiding future human planetary activities. For planetary subsurface exploration, an inchworm boring robot (IBR) has been proposed to penetrate the regolith, and the mechanical properties of the regolith are expected to be simultaneously investigated during the penetration process using the drilling tool on the IBR. This paper provides a preliminary study of an in situ method for measuring planetary regolith mechanical parameters using a drilling tool on a test bed. A conical-screw drilling tool was designed, and its drilling load characteristics were experimentally analyzed. Based on the drilling tool-regolith interaction model, two identification methods for determining the planetary regolith bearing and shearing parameters are proposed. The bearing and shearing parameters of lunar regolith simulant were successfully determined according to the pressure-sinkage tests and shear tests conducted on the test bed. The effects of the operating parameters on the identification results were also analyzed. The results indicate a feasible scheme for future planetary subsurface exploration.

  17. Development and mechanical properties of construction materials from lunar simulants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desai, Chandra S.

    1990-01-01

    The development of construction materials such as concrete from lunar soils without the use of water requires a different methodology than that used for conventional terrestrial concrete. Currently, this research involves two aspects: (1) liquefaction of lunar simulants with various additives in a furnace so as to produce a construction material like an intermediate ceramic; and (2) cyclic loading of simulant with different initial vacuums and densities with respect to the theoretical maximum densities (TMD). In both cases, bending, triaxial compression, extension, and hydrostatic tests will be performed to define the stress-strain strength response of the resulting materials. In the case of the intermediate ceramic, bending and available multiaxial test devices will be used, while for the compacted case, tests will be performed directly in the new device. The tests will be performed by simulating in situ confining conditions. A preliminary review of high-purity metal is also conducted.

  18. Construction material processed using lunar simulant in various environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chase, Stan; Ocallaghan-Hay, Bridget; Housman, Ralph; Kindig, Michael; King, John; Montegrande, Kevin; Norris, Raymond; Vanscotter, Ryan; Willenborg, Jonathan; Staubs, Harry

    1995-01-01

    The manufacture of construction materials from locally available resources in space is an important first step in the establishment of lunar and planetary bases. The objective of the CoMPULSIVE (Construction Material Processed Using Lunar Simulant In Various Environments) experiment is to develop a procedure to produce construction materials by sintering or melting Johnson Space Center Simulant 1 (JSC-1) lunar soil simulant in both earth-based (1-g) and microgravity (approximately 0-g) environments. The characteristics of the resultant materials will be tested to determine its physical and mechanical properties. The physical characteristics include: crystalline, thermal, and electrical properties. The mechanical properties include: compressive tensile, and flexural strengths. The simulant, placed in a sealed graphite crucible, will be heated using a high temperature furnace. The crucible will then be cooled by radiative and forced convective means. The core furnace element consists of space qualified quartz-halogen incandescent lamps with focusing mirrors. Sample temperatures of up to 2200 C are attainable using this heating method.

  19. The Future Lunar Flora Colony

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goel, E. G.; Guven, U. G.

    2017-10-01

    A constructional design for the primary establishment for a lunar colony using the micrometeorite rich soil is proposed. It highlights the potential of lunar regolith combined with Earth technology for water and oxygen for human outposts on the Moon.

  20. Development of a Modified Vacuum Cleaner for Lunar Surface Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toon, Katherine P.; Lee, Steve A.; Edgerly, Rachel D.

    2010-01-01

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) mission to expand space exploration will return humans to the Moon with the goal of maintaining a long-term presence. One challenge that NASA will face returning to the Moon is managing the lunar regolith found on the Moon's surface, which will collect on extravehicular activity (EVA) suits and other equipment. Based on the Apollo experience, the issues astronauts encountered with lunar regolith included eye/lung irritation, and various hardware failures (seals, screw threads, electrical connectors and fabric contamination), which were all related to inadequate lunar regolith mitigation. A vacuum cleaner capable of detaching, transferring, and efficiently capturing lunar regolith has been proposed as a method to mitigate the lunar regolith problem in the habitable environment on lunar surface. In order to develop this vacuum, a modified "off-the-shelf' vacuum cleaner will be used to determine detachment efficiency, vacuum requirements, and optimal cleaning techniques to ensure efficient dust removal in habitable lunar surfaces, EVA spacesuits, and air exchange volume. During the initial development of the Lunar Surface System vacuum cleaner, systematic testing was performed with varying flow rates on multiple surfaces (fabrics and metallics), atmospheric (14.7 psia) and reduced pressures (10.2 and 8.3 psia), different vacuum tool attachments, and several vacuum cleaning techniques in order to determine the performance requirements for the vacuum cleaner. The data recorded during testing was evaluated by calculating particulate removal, relative to the retained simulant on the tested surface. In addition, optical microscopy was used to determine particle size distribution retained on the surface. The scope of this paper is to explain the initial phase of vacuum cleaner development, including historical Apollo mission data, current state-of-the-art vacuum cleaner technology, and vacuum cleaner testing that has

  1. Gas Phase Pressure Effects on the Apparent Thermal Conductivity of JSC-1A Lunar Regolith Simulant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Zeng-Guang; Kleinhenz, Julie E.

    2011-01-01

    Gas phase pressure effects on the apparent thermal conductivity of a JSC-1A/air mixture have been experimentally investigated under steady state thermal conditions from 10 kPa to 100 kPa. The result showed that apparent thermal conductivity of the JSC-1A/air mixture decreased when pressure was lowered to 80 kPa. At 10 kPa, the conductivity decreased to 0.145 W/m/degree C, which is significantly lower than 0.196 W/m/degree C at 100 kPa. This finding is consistent with the results of previous researchers. The reduction of the apparent thermal conductivity at low pressures is ascribed to the Knudsen effect. Since the characteristic length of the void space in bulk JSC-1A varies over a wide range, both the Knudsen regime and continuum regime can coexist in the pore space. The volume ratio of the two regimes varies with pressure. Thus, as gas pressure decreases, the gas volume controlled by Knudsen regime increases. Under Knudsen regime the resistance to the heat flow is higher than that in the continuum regime, resulting in the observed pressure dependency of the apparent thermal conductivity.

  2. Dynamic Hybrid Simulation of the Lunar Wake During ARTEMIS Crossing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiehle, S.; Plaschke, F.; Angelopoulos, V.; Auster, H.; Glassmeier, K.; Kriegel, H.; Motschmann, U. M.; Mueller, J.

    2010-12-01

    The interaction of the highly dynamic solar wind with the Moon is simulated with the A.I.K.E.F. (Adaptive Ion Kinetic Electron Fluid) code for the ARTEMIS P1 flyby on February 13, 2010. The A.I.K.E.F. hybrid plasma simulation code is the improved version of the Braunschweig code. It is able to automatically increase simulation grid resolution in areas of interest during runtime, which greatly increases resolution as well as performance. As the Moon has no intrinsic magnetic field and no ionosphere, the solar wind particles are absorbed at its surface, resulting in the formation of the lunar wake at the nightside. The solar wind magnetic field is basically convected through the Moon and the wake is slowly filled up with solar wind particles. However, this interaction is strongly influenced by the highly dynamic solar wind during the flyby. This is considered by a dynamic variation of the upstream conditions in the simulation using OMNI solar wind measurement data. By this method, a very good agreement between simulation and observations is achieved. The simulations show that the stationary structure of the lunar wake constitutes a tableau vivant in space representing the well-known Friedrichs diagram for MHD waves.

  3. Optical Extinction Measurements of Dust Density in the GMRO Regolith Test Bin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lane, J.; Mantovani, J.; Mueller, R.; Nugent, M.; Nick, A.; Schuler, J.; Townsend, I.

    2016-01-01

    A regolith simulant test bin was constructed and completed in the Granular Mechanics and Regolith Operations (GMRO) Lab in 2013. This Planetary Regolith Test Bed (PRTB) is a 64 sq m x 1 m deep test bin, is housed in a climate-controlled facility, and contains 120 MT of lunar-regolith simulant, called Black Point-1 or BP-1, from Black Point, AZ. One of the current uses of the test bin is to study the effects of difficult lighting and dust conditions on Telerobotic Perception Systems to better assess and refine regolith operations for asteroid, Mars and polar lunar missions. Low illumination and low angle of incidence lighting pose significant problems to computer vision and human perception. Levitated dust on Asteroids interferes with imaging and degrades depth perception. Dust Storms on Mars pose a significant problem. Due to these factors, the likely performance of telerobotics is poorly understood for future missions. Current space telerobotic systems are only operated in bright lighting and dust-free conditions. This technology development testing will identify: (1) the impact of degraded lighting and environmental dust on computer vision and operator perception, (2) potential methods and procedures for mitigating these impacts, (3) requirements for telerobotic perception systems for asteroid capture, Mars dust storms and lunar regolith ISRU missions. In order to solve some of the Telerobotic Perception system problems, a plume erosion sensor (PES) was developed in the Lunar Regolith Simulant Bin (LRSB), containing 2 MT of JSC-1a lunar simulant. PES is simply a laser and digital camera with a white target. Two modes of operation have been investigated: (1) single laser spot - the brightness of the spot is dependent on the optical extinction due to dust and is thus an indirect measure of particle number density, and (2) side-scatter - the camera images the laser from the side, showing beam entrance into the dust cloud and the boundary between dust and void. Both

  4. The simulation of lunar gravity field recovery from D-VLBI of Chang’E-1 and SELENE lunar orbiters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Jianguo; Ping, Jingsong; Matsumoto, K.; Li, Fei

    2008-07-01

    The lunar gravity field is a foundation to study the lunar interior structure, and to recover the evolution history of the Moon. It is still an open and key topic for lunar science. For above mentioned reasons, it becomes one of the important scientific objectives of recent lunar missions, such as KAGUYA (SELENE) the Japanese lunar mission and Chang’E-1, the Chinese lunar mission. The Chang’E-1 and the SELENE were successfully launched in 2007. It is estimated that these two missions can fly around the Moon longer than 6 months simultaneously. In these two missions, the Chinese new VLBI (Very Long Baseline Interferometry) network will be applied for precise orbit determination (POD) by using a differential VLBI (D-VLBI) method during the mission period. The same-beam D-VLBI technique will contribute to recover the lunar gravity field together with other conventional observables, i.e. R&RR (Range and Range Rate) and multi-way Doppler. Taking VLBI tracking conditions into consideration and using the GEODYNII/SOVLE software of GSFC/NASA/USA [Rowlands, D.D., Marshall, J.A., Mccarthy, J., et al. GEODYN II System Description, vols. 1 5. Contractor Report, Hughes STX Corp. Greenbelt, MD, 1997; Ullman, R.E. SOLVE program: mathematical formulation and guide to user input, Hughes/STX Contractor Report, Contract NAS5-31760. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, 1994], we simulated the lunar gravity field recovering ability with and without D-VLBI between the Chang’E-1 and SELENE main satellite. The cases of overlapped flying and tracking period of 30 days, 60 days and 90 days have been analyzed, respectively. The results show that D-VLBI tracking between two lunar satellites can improve the gravity field recovery remarkably. The results and methods introduced in this paper will benefit the actual missions.

  5. Combustion Joining of Regolith Tiles for In-Situ Fabrication of Launch/Landing Pads on the Moon and Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferguson, Robert E.; Shafirovich, Evgeny; Mantovani, James G.

    2017-01-01

    To mitigate dust problems during launch/landing operations in lunar and Mars missions, it is desired to build solid pads on the surface. Recently, strong tiles have been fabricated from lunar regolith simulants using high-temperature sintering. The present work investigates combustion joining of these tiles through the use of exothermic intermetallic reactions. Specifically, nickel/aluminum (1:1 mole ratio) mixture was placed in a gap between the tiles sintered from JSC-1A lunar regolith simulant. Upon ignition by a laser, a self-sustained propagation of the combustion front over the mixture occurred. Joining was improved with increasing the tile thickness from 6.3 mm to 12.7 mm. The temperatures sufficient for melting the glass phase of JSC-1A were recorded for 12.7-mm tiles, which explains the observed better joining.

  6. Experimental Simulations to Understand the Lunar and Martian Surficial Processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Y. Y. S.; Li, X.; Tang, H.; Li, Y.; Zeng, X.; Chang, R.; Li, S.; Zhang, S.; Jin, H.; Mo, B.; Li, R.; Yu, W.; Wang, S.

    2016-12-01

    In support with China's Lunar and Mars exploration programs and beyond, our center is dedicated to understand the surficial processes and environments of planetary bodies. Over the latest several years, we design, build and optimize experimental simulation facilities and utilize them to test hypotheses and evaluate affecting mechanisms under controlled conditions particularly relevant to the Moon and Mars. Among the fundamental questions to address, we emphasize on five major areas: (1) Micrometeorites bombardment simulation to evaluate the formation mechanisms of np-Fe0 which was found in lunar samples and the possible sources of Fe. (2) Solar wind implantation simulation to evaluate the alteration/amorphization/OH or H2O formation on the surface of target minerals or rocks. (3) Dusts mobility characteristics on the Moon and other planetary bodies by excitation different types of dust particles and measuring their movements. (4) Mars basaltic soil simulant development (e.g., Jining Martian Soil Simulant (JMSS-1)) and applications for scientific/engineering experiments. (5) Halogens (Cl and Br) and life essential elements (C, H, O, N, P, and S) distribution and speciation on Mars during surficial processes such as sedimentary- and photochemical- related processes. Depending on the variables of interest, the simulation systems provide flexibility to vary source of energy, temperature, pressure, and ambient gas composition in the reaction chambers. Also, simulation products can be observed or analyzed in-situ by various analyzer components inside the chamber, without interrupting the experimental conditions. In addition, behavior of elements and isotopes during certain surficial processes (e.g., evaporation, dissolution, etc.) can be theoretically predicted by our theoretical geochemistry group with thermodynamics-kinetics calculation and modeling, which supports experiment design and result interpretation.

  7. Computer simulating observations of the Lunar physical libration for the Japanese Lunar project ILOM

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrova, Natalia; Hanada, Hideo

    2010-05-01

    In the frame of the second stage of the Japanese space mission SELENE-2 (Hanada et al. 2009) the project ILOM (In-situ Lunar Orientation Measurement) planned after 2017years is a kind of instrument for positioning on the Moon. It will be set near the lunar pole and will determine parameters of lunar physical libration by positioning of several tens of stars in the field of view regularly for longer than one year. Presented work is dedicated to analyses of computer simulating future observations. It's proposed that for every star crossing lunar prime meridian its polar distance will be to measure. The methods of optimal star observation are being developed for the future experiment. The equations are constructed to determine libration angles ? (t),ρ(t),σ(t)- on the basis of observed polar distances pobs: (| f1(?,ρ,Iσ,pobs) = 0 |{ f2(?,ρ,Iσ,pobs) = 0 | f3(?,ρ,Iσ,pobs) = 0 |( or f(X) = 0, where ; f = ? f1 ? | f2 | |? f3 |? X = ? ? ? | ρ | |? Iσ |? (1) At the present stage we have developed the software for selection of stars for these future polar observations. Stars were taken from various stellar catalogues, such as the UCAC2-BSS, Hipparcos, Tycho and FK6. The software reduces ICRS coordinates of star to selenographical system at the epoch of observation (Petrova et al., 2009). For example, to the epochs 2017 - 2018 more than 50 stars brighter than m = 12 were selected for the northern pole. In total, these stars give about 600 crossings of the prime meridian during one year. Nevertheless, only a few stars (2-5) may be observed in a vicinity of the one moment. This is not enough to have sufficient sample to exclude various kind of errors. The software includes programmes which can determine the moment of transition of star across the meridian and theoretical values of libration angles at this moments. A serious problem arises when we try to solve equations (1) with the purpose to determine libration angles on the basis of simulated pobs.. Polar distances

  8. Exploring Regolith Depth and Cycling on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fassett, C.; Needham, D. H.; Watters, W. A.; Hundal, C.

    2017-12-01

    Regolith or loose sediment is ubiquitous on the surface of Mars, but our understanding of how this fragmental layer forms and evolves with time is limited. In particular, how regolith thickness varies spatially on Mars is not well known. A common perspective is to start from the canonical model for lunar regolith, which is not unreasonable, given that both Mars and the Moon are heavily cratered surfaces. However, this lunar-like paradigm is not supported by observations of Mars from recent missions. On Mars, bedrock exposures are more common and bedrock is generally closer to the surface than on the Moon, and the processes modifying the regolith differ substantially on the two bodies. Moreover, boulders on the Moon have much shorter lifetimes than on Mars, so boulders are much less common on the lunar surface. The sediment transport processes infilling craters differs dramatically on these two bodies as well. On Mars, fine-grained sediment is efficiently transported (advectively) by wind and trapped in craters rapidly after they form. Lateral transport of lunar regolith is comparatively inefficient and dominated by slow impact-driven (diffusive) transport of regolith. The goal of this contribution is to discuss observational constraints on Mars' regolith depth, and to place observations into a model for Mars landform evolution and regolith cycle. Our operating hypothesis is that the inter-crater surface on Mars is comparatively starved of fine-grained sediment (compared to the Moon), because transport and trapping of fines in craters out-competes physical weathering. Moreover, thick sedimentary bodies on Mars often get (weakly) cemented and lithified due to interactions with fluids, even in the most recent, Amazonian epoch. This is consistent with what is observed at the MER and MSL landing sites and what is known from the SNC meteorites.

  9. Multi-state autonomous drilling for lunar exploration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chen Chongbin

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Due to the lack of information of subsurface lunar regolith stratification which varies along depth, the drilling device may encounter lunar soil and lunar rock randomly in the drilling process. To meet the load safety requirements of unmanned sampling mission under limited orbital resources, the control strategy of autonomous drilling should adapt to the indeterminable lunar environments. Based on the analysis of two types of typical drilling media (i.e., lunar soil and lunar rock, this paper proposes a multi-state control strategy for autonomous lunar drilling. To represent the working circumstances in the lunar subsurface and reduce the complexity of the control algorithm, lunar drilling process was categorized into three drilling states: the interface detection, initiation of drilling parameters for recognition and drilling medium recognition. Support vector machine (SVM and continuous wavelet transform were employed for the online recognition of drilling media and interface, respectively. Finite state machine was utilized to control the transition among different drilling states. To verify the effectiveness of the multi-state control strategy, drilling experiments were implemented with multi-layered drilling media constructed by lunar soil simulant and lunar rock simulant. The results reveal that the multi-state control method is capable of detecting drilling state variation and adjusting drilling parameters timely under vibration interferences. The multi-state control method provides a feasible reference for the control of extraterrestrial autonomous drilling.

  10. Laboratory simulations of planetary surfaces: Understanding regolith physical properties from remote photopolarimetric observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Robert M.; Boryta, Mark D.; Hapke, Bruce W.; Manatt, Kenneth S.; Shkuratov, Yuriy; Psarev, V.; Vandervoort, Kurt; Kroner, Desire; Nebedum, Adaze; Vides, Christina L.; Quiñones, John

    2018-03-01

    We present reflectance and polarization phase curve measurements of highly reflective planetary regolith analogues having physical characteristics expected on atmosphereless solar system bodies (ASSBs) such as a eucritic asteroids or icy satellites. We used a goniometric photopolarimeter (GPP) of novel design to study thirteen well-sorted particle size fractions of aluminum oxide (Al2O3). The sample suite included particle sizes larger than, approximately equal to, and smaller than the wavelength of the incident monochromatic radiation (λ = 635 nm). The observed phase angle, α, was 0.056 o ∼95%). The incident radiation has a very high probability of being multiply scattered before being backscattered toward the incident direction or ultimately absorbed. The five smallest particle sizes exhibited extremely high void space (> ∼95%). The reflectance phase curves for all particle size fractions show a pronounced non-linear reflectance increase with decreasing phase angle at α∼ ∼1 we detect no polarization. This polarization behavior is distinct from that observed in low albedo solar system objects such as the Moon and asteroids and for absorbing materials in the laboratory. We suggest this behavior arises because photons that are backscattered have a high probability of having interacted with two or more particles, thus giving rise to the CB process. These results may explain the unusual negative polarization behavior observed near small phase angles reported for several decades on highly reflective ASSBs such as the asteroids 44 Nysa, 64 Angelina and the Galilean satellites Io, Europa and Ganymede. Our results suggest these ASSB regoliths scatter electromagnetic radiation as if they were extremely fine grained with void space > ∼95%, and grain sizes of the order geo-engineering, particularly to suggestions that earth's radiation balance can be modified by injecting Al2O3 particulates into the stratosphere thereby offsetting the effect of anthropogenic

  11. Preservation of Biomarkers from Cyanobacteria Mixed with Mars­Like Regolith Under Simulated Martian Atmosphere and UV Flux

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baqué, Mickael; Verseux, Cyprien; Böttger, Ute; Rabbow, Elke; de Vera, Jean-Pierre Paul; Billi, Daniela

    2016-06-01

    The space mission EXPOSE-R2 launched on the 24th of July 2014 to the International Space Station is carrying the BIOMEX (BIOlogy and Mars EXperiment) experiment aimed at investigating the endurance of extremophiles and stability of biomolecules under space and Mars-like conditions. In order to prepare the analyses of the returned samples, ground-based simulations were carried out in Planetary and Space Simulation facilities. During the ground-based simulations, Chroococcidiopsis cells mixed with two Martian mineral analogues (phyllosilicatic and sulfatic Mars regolith simulants) were exposed to a Martian simulated atmosphere combined or not with UV irradiation corresponding to the dose received during a 1-year-exposure in low Earth orbit (or half a Martian year on Mars). Cell survival and preservation of potential biomarkers such as photosynthetic and photoprotective pigments or DNA were assessed by colony forming ability assays, confocal laser scanning microscopy, Raman spectroscopy and PCR-based assays. DNA and photoprotective pigments (carotenoids) were detectable after simulations of the space mission (570 MJ/m2 of UV 200-400 nm irradiation and Martian simulated atmosphere), even though signals were attenuated by the treatment. The fluorescence signal from photosynthetic pigments was differently preserved after UV irradiation, depending on the thickness of the samples. UV irradiation caused a high background fluorescence of the Martian mineral analogues, as revealed by Raman spectroscopy. Further investigation will be needed to ensure unambiguous identification and operations of future Mars missions. However, a 3-month exposure to a Martian simulated atmosphere showed no significant damaging effect on the tested cyanobacterial biosignatures, pointing out the relevance of the latter for future investigations after the EXPOSE-R2 mission. Data gathered during the ground-based simulations will contribute to interpret results from space experiments and guide our

  12. Ceramics for Molten Materials Containment, Transfer and Handling on the Lunar Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Standish, Evan; Stefanescu, Doru M.; Curreri, Peter A.

    2009-01-01

    As part of a project on Molten Materials Transfer and Handling on the Lunar Surface, molten materials containment samples of various ceramics were tested to determine their performance in contact with a melt of lunar regolith simulant. The test temperature was 1600 C with contact times ranging from 0 to 12 hours. Regolith simulant was pressed into cylinders with the approximate dimensions of 1.25 dia x 1.25cm height and then melted on ceramic substrates. The regolith-ceramic interface was examined after processing to determine the melt/ceramic interaction. It was found that the molten regolith wetted all oxide ceramics tested extremely well which resulted in chemical reaction between the materials in each case. Alumina substrates were identified which withstood contact at the operating temperature of a molten regolith electrolysis cell (1600 C) for eight hours with little interaction or deformation. This represents an improvement over alumina grades currently in use and will provide a lifetime adequate for electrolysis experiments lasting 24 hours or more. Two types of non-oxide ceramics were also tested. It was found that they interacted to a limited degree with the melt resulting in little corrosion. These ceramics, Sic and BN, were not wetted as well as the oxides by the melt, and so remain possible materials for molten regolith handling. Tests wing longer holding periods and larger volumes of regolith are necessary to determine the ultimate performance of the tested ceramics.

  13. 3D PIC SIMULATIONS OF COLLISIONLESS SHOCKS AT LUNAR MAGNETIC ANOMALIES AND THEIR ROLE IN FORMING LUNAR SWIRLS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bamford, R. A.; Kellett, B. J. [RAL Space, STFC, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Chilton, Didcot, OX11 0QX (United Kingdom); Alves, E. P.; Cruz, F.; Silva, L. O [GoLP/Instituto de Plasmas e Fusão Nuclear, Instituto Superior Técnico, Universidade de Lisboa, 1049-001 Lisbon (Portugal); Fonseca, R. A. [DCTI/ISCTE—Instituto Universitário de Lisboa, 1649-026 Lisbon (Portugal); Trines, R. M. G. M. [Central Laser Facility, STFC, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Chilton, Didcot, OX11 0QX (United Kingdom); Halekas, J. S. [Department of Physics and Astronomy, 414 Van Allen Hall, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242 (United States); Kramer, G. [The Lunar and Planetary Institute, USRA, 3600 Bay Area Blvd, Houston, TX 77058 (United States); Harnett, E. [Department of Earth and Space Science, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195-1310 (United States); Cairns, R. A. [University of St Andrews, North Haugh, St. Andrews, Fife, KY16 9SS (United Kingdom); Bingham, R., E-mail: Ruth.Bamford@stfc.ac.uk [SUPA, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland, 4G 0NG (United Kingdom)

    2016-10-20

    Investigation of the lunar crustal magnetic anomalies offers a comprehensive long-term data set of observations of small-scale magnetic fields and their interaction with the solar wind. In this paper a review of the observations of lunar mini-magnetospheres is compared quantifiably with theoretical kinetic-scale plasma physics and 3D particle-in-cell simulations. The aim of this paper is to provide a complete picture of all the aspects of the phenomena and to show how the observations from all the different and international missions interrelate. The analysis shows that the simulations are consistent with the formation of miniature (smaller than the ion Larmor orbit) collisionless shocks and miniature magnetospheric cavities, which has not been demonstrated previously. The simulations reproduce the finesse and form of the differential proton patterns that are believed to be responsible for the creation of both the “lunar swirls” and “dark lanes.” Using a mature plasma physics code like OSIRIS allows us, for the first time, to make a side-by-side comparison between model and space observations. This is shown for all of the key plasma parameters observed to date by spacecraft, including the spectral imaging data of the lunar swirls. The analysis of miniature magnetic structures offers insight into multi-scale mechanisms and kinetic-scale aspects of planetary magnetospheres.

  14. Record of solar and galactic radiations in the ancient lunar regolith and their implications for the early history of the sun and moon

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Crozaz, G; Poupeau, G; Walker, R M; Zinner, E; Morrison, D A [Washington Univ., St. Louis, Mo. (USA)

    1977-03-31

    A variety of techniques are available for studying past variations of solar wind, solar flares, galactic cosmic rays, and micrometeorites. Lunar rock results which average over the recent past (approximately 10 Ma) indicate no major changes in any of these components. At longer times, recent data suggest secular changes in the /sup 15/N//sup 14/N ratio in the solar wind, possibly due to enhanced solar flare activity. With the deployment of new techniques, it now appears possible to measure solar wind, solar flare, and micro-meteorite records in individual grains removed from different layers of lunar cores. Such grains have been exposed for brief intervals of time (10/sup 3/ to 10/sup 4/ a) for times extending at least 10/sup 9/ a in the past. Lunar and meteoritic breccias are promising candidates for extending the record back still further, perhaps close to the beginning of the solar system.

  15. The record of solar and galactic radiations in the ancient lunar regolith and their implications for the early history of the sun and moon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Crozaz, G.; Poupeau, G.; Walker, R.M.; Zinner, E.; Morrison, D.A.

    1977-01-01

    A variety of techniques are available for studying past variations of solar wind, solar flares, galactic cosmic rays, and micrometeorites. Lunar rock results which average over the recent past (approximately 10 Ma) indicate no major changes in any of these components. At longer times, recent data suggest secular changes in the 15 N/ 14 N ratio in the solar wind, possibly due to enhanced solar flare activity. With the deployment of new techniques, it now appears possible to measure solar wind, solar flare, and micro-meteorite records in individual grains removed from different layers of lunar cores. Such grains have been exposed for brief intervals of time (10 3 to 10 4 a) for times extending at least 10 9 a in the past. Lunar and meteoritic breccias are promising candidates for extending the record back still further, perhaps close to the beginning of the solar system. (author)

  16. Hydrogen Distribution in the Lunar Polar Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanin, A. B.; Mitrofanov, I. G.; Litvak, M. L.; Bakhtin, B. N.; Bodnarik, J. G.; Boynton, W. V.; Chin, G.; Evans, L. G.; Harshmann, K.; Fedosov, F.; hide

    2016-01-01

    We present a method of conversion of the lunar neutron counting rate measured by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) Lunar Exploration Neutron Detector (LEND) instrument collimated neutron detectors, to water equivalent hydrogen (WEH) in the top approximately 1 m layer of lunar regolith. Polar maps of the Moon’s inferred hydrogen abundance are presented and discussed.

  17. Lunar dusty plasma: A result of interaction of the solar wind flux and ultraviolet radiation with the lunar surface

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lisin, E A; Tarakanov, V P; Petrov, O F; Popel, S I

    2015-01-01

    One of the main problems of future missions to the Moon is associated with lunar dust. Solar wind flux and ultraviolet radiation interact with the lunar surface. As a result, there is a substantial surface change and a near-surface plasma sheath. Dust particles from the lunar regolith, which turned in this plasma because of any mechanical processes, can levitate above the surface, forming dust clouds. In preparing of the space experiments “Luna-Glob” and “Luna-Resource” particle-in-cell calculations of the near-surface plasma sheath parameters are carried out. Here we present some new results of particle-in-cell simulation of the plasma sheath formed near the surface of the moon as a result of interaction of the solar wind and ultraviolet radiation with the lunar surface. The conditions of charging and stable levitation of dust particles in plasma above the lunar surface are also considered. (paper)

  18. Formation of Nanophase Iron in Lunar Soil Simulant for Use in ISRU Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yang; Taylor, Lawrence A.; Hill, Eddy; Day, James D. M.

    2005-01-01

    For the prospective return of humans to the Moon and the extensive amount of premonitory studies necessary, large quantities of lunar soil simulants are required, for a myriad of purposes from construction/engineering purposes all the way to medical testing of its effects from ingestion by humans. And there is only a limited and precious quantity of lunar soil available on Earth (i.e., Apollo soils) - therefore, the immediate need for lunar soil simulants. Since the Apollo era, there have been several simulants; of these JSC-1 (Johnson Space Center) and MLS-1 (Minnesota Lunar Simulant) have been the most widely used. JSC-1 was produced from glassy volcanic tuff in order to approximate lunar soil geotechnical properties; whereas, MLS-1 approximates the chemistry of Apollo 11 high-Ti soil, 10084. Stocks of both simulants are depleted, but JSC-1 has recently gone back into production. The lunar soil simulant workshop, held at Marshall Space Flight Center in January 2005, identified the need to make new simulants for the special properties of lunar soil, such as nanophase iron (np-Fe(sup 0). Hill et al. (2005, this volume) showed the important role of microscale Fe(sup 0) in microwave processing of the lunar soil simulants JSC-1 and MLS-1. Lunar soil is formed by space weathering of lunar rocks (e.g., micrometeorite impact, cosmic particle bombardment). Glass generated during micrometeorite impact cements rock and mineral fragments together to form aggregates called agglutinates, and also produces vapor that is deposited and coats soil grains. Taylor et al. (2001) showed that the relative amount of impact glass in lunar soil increases with decreasing grain size and is the most abundant component in lunar dust (less than 20 micrometer fraction). Notably, the magnetic susceptibility of lunar soil also increases with the decreasing grain size, as a function of the amount of nanophase-sized Fe(sup 0) in impact-melt generated glass. Keller et al. (1997, 1999) also

  19. Simulation of the Chang'E-5 mission contribution in lunar long wavelength gravity field improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Jianguo; Yang, Xuan; Ping, Jinsong; Ye, Mao; Liu, Shanhong; Jin, Weitong; Li, Fei; Barriot, Jean-Pierre

    2018-06-01

    The precision of lunar gravity field estimation has improved by means of three to five orders of magnitude since the successful GRAIL lunar mission. There are still discrepancies however, in the low degree coefficients and long wavelength components of the solutions developed by two space research centers (JPL and GSFC). These discrepancies hint at the possibilities for improving the accuracy in the long wavelength part of the lunar gravity field. In the near future, China will launch the Chang'E-5 lunar mission. In this sample-return mission, there will be a chance to do KBRR measurements between an ascending module and an orbiting module. These two modules will fly around lunar at an inclination of ˜49 degrees, with an orbital height of 100 km and an inter-satellite distance of 200 km. In our research, we simulated the contribution of the KBRR tracking mode for different GRAIL orbital geometries. This analysis indicated possible deficiencies in the low degree coefficient solutions for the polar satellite-to-satellite tracking mode at various orbital heights. We also investigated the potential contributions of the KBRR to the Chang'E-5 mission goal of lunar gravity field recovery, especially in the long wavelength component. Potential improvements were assessed using various power spectrums of the lunar gravity field models. In addition, we also investigated possible improvements in solving lunar tidal Love number K2. These results may assist the implementation of the Chang'E-5 mission.

  20. High-Fidelity Lunar Dust Simulant, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The severity of the lunar dust problems encountered during the Apollo missions were consistently underestimated by ground tests, illustrating the need to develop...

  1. High-Fidelity Lunar Dust Simulant, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The severity of the lunar dust problems encountered during the Apollo missions were consistently underestimated by ground tests, illustrating the need to develop...

  2. Petrology of lunar rocks and implication to lunar evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ridley, W. I.

    1976-01-01

    Recent advances in lunar petrology, based on studies of lunar rock samples available through the Apollo program, are reviewed. Samples of bedrock from both maria and terra have been collected where micrometeorite impact penetrated the regolith and brought bedrock to the surface, but no in situ cores have been taken. Lunar petrogenesis and lunar thermal history supported by studies of the rock sample are discussed and a tentative evolutionary scenario is constructed. Mare basalts, terra assemblages of breccias, soils, rocks, and regolith are subjected to elemental analysis, mineralogical analysis, trace content analysis, with studies of texture, ages and isotopic composition. Probable sources of mare basalts are indicated.

  3. Discovery of moganite in a lunar meteorite as a trace of H2O ice in the Moon’s regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seto, Yusuke; Miyake, Akira; Sekine, Toshimori; Tomeoka, Kazushige; Matsumoto, Megumi; Kobayashi, Takamichi

    2018-01-01

    Moganite, a monoclinic SiO2 phase, has been discovered in a lunar meteorite. Silica micrograins occur as nanocrystalline aggregates of mostly moganite and occasionally coesite and stishovite in the KREEP (high potassium, rare-earth element, and phosphorus)–like gabbroic-basaltic breccia NWA 2727, although these grains are seemingly absent in other lunar meteorites. We interpret the origin of these grains as follows: alkaline water delivery to the Moon via carbonaceous chondrite collisions, fluid capture during impact-induced brecciation, moganite precipitation from the captured H2O at pH 9.5 to 10.5 and 363 to 399 K on the sunlit surface, and meteorite launch from the Moon caused by an impact at 8 to 22 GPa and >673 K. On the subsurface, this captured H2O may still remain as ice at estimated bulk content of >0.6 weight %. This indicates the possibility of the presence of abundant available water resources underneath local sites of the host bodies within the Procellarum KREEP and South Pole Aitken terranes. PMID:29732406

  4. Synthesis and Stability of Iron Nanoparticles for Lunar Environment Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hung, Ching-cheh; McNatt, Jeremiah

    2009-01-01

    Simulant of lunar dust is needed when researching the lunar environment. However, unlike the true lunar dust, today s simulants do not contain nanophase iron. Two different processes have been developed to fabricate nanophase iron to be used as part of the lunar dust simulant: (1) Sequentially treating a mixture of ferric chloride, fluorinated carbon, and soda lime glass beads at about 300 C in nitrogen, at room temperature in air, and then at 1050 C in nitrogen. The product includes glass beads that are grey in color, can be attracted by a magnet, and contain alpha-iron nanoparticles (which seem to slowly lose their lattice structure in ambient air during a period of 12 months). This product may have some similarity to the lunar glassy regolith that contains Fe(sup 0). (2) Heating a mixture of carbon black and a lunar simulant (a mixed metal oxide that includes iron oxide) at 1050 C in nitrogen. This process simulates lunar dust reaction to the carbon in a micrometeorite at the time of impact. The product contains a chemically modified simulant that can be attracted by a magnet and has a surface layer whose iron concentration increased during the reaction. The iron was found to be alpha-iron and Fe3O4 nanoparticles, which appear to grow after the fabrication process, but stabilizes after 6 months of ambient air storage.

  5. Lagrangian Trajectory Modeling of Lunar Dust Particles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lane, John E.; Metzger, Philip T.; Immer, Christopher D.

    2008-01-01

    Apollo landing videos shot from inside the right LEM window, provide a quantitative measure of the characteristics and dynamics of the ejecta spray of lunar regolith particles beneath the Lander during the final 10 [m] or so of descent. Photogrammetry analysis gives an estimate of the thickness of the dust layer and angle of trajectory. In addition, Apollo landing video analysis divulges valuable information on the regolith ejecta interactions with lunar surface topography. For example, dense dust streaks are seen to originate at the outer rims of craters within a critical radius of the Lander during descent. The primary intent of this work was to develop a mathematical model and software implementation for the trajectory simulation of lunar dust particles acted on by gas jets originating from the nozzle of a lunar Lander, where the particle sizes typically range from 10 micron to 500 micron. The high temperature, supersonic jet of gas that is exhausted from a rocket engine can propel dust, soil, gravel, as well as small rocks to high velocities. The lunar vacuum allows ejected particles to travel great distances unimpeded, and in the case of smaller particles, escape velocities may be reached. The particle size distributions and kinetic energies of ejected particles can lead to damage to the landing spacecraft or to other hardware that has previously been deployed in the vicinity. Thus the primary motivation behind this work is to seek a better understanding for the purpose of modeling and predicting the behavior of regolith dust particle trajectories during powered rocket descent and ascent.

  6. The Role of Planetary Dust and Regolith Mechanics in Technology Developments at NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agui, Juan H.

    2011-01-01

    One of NASA's long term goals continues to be the exploration of other planets and orbital bodies in our solar system. Our sustained presence through the installation of stations or bases on these planetary surfaces will depend on developing properly designed habitation modules, mobility systems and supporting infrastructure. NASA Glenn Research Center is involved in several technology developments in support of this overarching goal. Two key developments are in the area of advanced filtration and excavation systems. The first addresses the issues posed by the accumulation of particulate matter over long duration missions and the intrusion of planetary dust into spacecraft and habitat pressurized cabins. The latter supports the operation and infrastructure of insitu resource utilization (ISRU) processes to derive consumables and construction materials from the planetary regolith. These two developments require a basic understanding of the lunar regolith at the micro (particle) to macro (bulk) level. Investigation of the relevant properties of the lunar regolith and characterization of the standard simulant materials used in. testing were important first steps in these developments. The fundamentals and operational concepts of these technologies as well as descriptions of new NASA facilities, including the Particulate Filtration Testing and the NASA Excavation and Traction Testing facilities, and their capabilities for testing and advancing these technologies will be presented. The test data also serves to validate and anchor computational simulation models.

  7. An Investigation of the Mechanical Properties of Some Martian Regolith Simulants with Respect to the Surface Properties at the InSight Mission Landing Site

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delage, Pierre; Karakostas, Foivos; Dhemaied, Amine; Belmokhtar, Malik; Lognonné, Philippe; Golombek, Matt; De Laure, Emmanuel; Hurst, Ken; Dupla, Jean-Claude; Kedar, Sharon; Cui, Yu Jun; Banerdt, Bruce

    2017-10-01

    In support of the InSight mission in which two instruments (the SEIS seismometer and the HP3 heat flow probe) will interact directly with the regolith on the surface of Mars, a series of mechanical tests were conducted on three different regolith simulants to better understand the observations of the physical and mechanical parameters that will be derived from InSight. The mechanical data obtained were also compared to data on terrestrial sands. The density of the regolith strongly influences its mechanical properties, as determined from the data on terrestrial sands. The elastoplastic compression volume changes were investigated through oedometer tests that also provided estimates of possible changes in density with depth. The results of direct shear tests provided values of friction angles that were compared with that of a terrestrial sand, and an extrapolation to lower density provided a friction angle compatible with that estimated from previous observations on the surface of Mars. The importance of the contracting/dilating shear volume changes of sands on the dynamic penetration of the mole was determined, with penetration facilitated by the ˜1.3 Mg/m3 density estimated at the landing site. Seismic velocities, measured by means of piezoelectric bender elements in triaxial specimens submitted to various isotropic confining stresses, show the importance of the confining stress, with lesser influence of density changes under compression. A power law relation of velocity as a function of confining stress with an exponent of 0.3 was identified from the tests, allowing an estimate of the surface seismic velocity of 150 m/s. The effect on the seismic velocity of a 10% proportion of rock in the regolith was also studied. These data will be compared with in situ data measured by InSight after landing.

  8. A Virtual Simulation Environment for Lunar Rover: Framework and Key Technologies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan-chun Yang

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Lunar rover development involves a large amount of validation works in realistic operational conditions, including its mechanical subsystem and on-board software. Real tests require equipped rover platform and a realistic terrain. It is very time consuming and high cost. To improve the development efficiency, a rover simulation environment called RSVE that affords real time capabilities with high fidelity has been developed. It uses fractional Brown motion (fBm technique and statistical properties to generate lunar surface. Thus, various terrain models for simulation can be generated through changing several parameters. To simulate lunar rover evolving on natural and unstructured surface with high realism, the whole dynamics of the multi-body systems and complex interactions with soft ground is integrated in this environment. An example for path planning algorithm and controlling algorithm testing in this environment is tested. This simulation environment runs on PC or Silicon Graphics.

  9. A Virtual Simulation Environment for Lunar Rover: Framework and Key Technologies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan-chun Yang

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available Lunar rover development involves a large amount of validation works in realistic operational conditions, including its mechanical subsystem and on-board software. Real tests require equipped rover platform and a realistic terrain. It is very time consuming and high cost. To improve the development efficiency, a rover simulation environment called RSVE that affords real time capabilities with high fidelity has been developed. It uses fractional Brown motion (fBm technique and statistical properties to generate lunar surface. Thus, various terrain models for simulation can be generated through changing several parameters. To simulate lunar rover evolving on natural and unstructured surface with high realism, the whole dynamics of the multi-body systems and complex interactions with soft ground is integrated in this environment. An example for path planning algorithm and controlling algorithm testing in this environment is tested. This simulation environment runs on PC or Silicon Graphics.

  10. The Microstructure of Lunar Micrometeorite Impact Craters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noble, S. K.; Keller, L. P.; Christoffersen, R.; Rahman, Z.

    2016-01-01

    The peak of the mass flux of impactors striking the lunar surface is made up of objects approximately 200 micrometers in diameter that erode rocks, comminute regolith grains, and produce agglutinates. The effects of these micro-scale impacts are still not fully understood. Much effort has focused on evaluating the physical and optical effects of micrometeorite impacts on lunar and meteoritic material using pulsed lasers to simulate the energy deposited into a substrate in a typical hypervelocity impact. Here we characterize the physical and chemical changes that accompany natural micrometeorite impacts into lunar rocks with long surface exposure to the space environment (12075 and 76015). Transmission electron microscope (TEM) observations were obtained from cross-sections of approximately 10-20 micrometers diameter craters that revealed important micro-structural details of micrometeorite impact processes, including the creation of npFe (sup 0) in the melt, and extensive deformation around the impact site.

  11. Conceptual Design of Korea Aerospace Research Institute Lunar Explorer Dynamic Simulator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dong-Young Rew

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available In lunar explorer development program, computer simulator is necessary to provide virtual environments that vehicle confronts in lunar transfer, orbit, and landing missions, and to analyze dynamic behavior of the spacecraft under these environments. Objective of simulation differs depending on its application in spacecraft development cycle. Scope of use cases considered in this paper includes simulation of software based, processor and/or hardware in the loop, and support of ground-based flight test of developed vehicle. These use cases represent early phase in development cycle but reusability of modeling results in the next design phase is considered in defining requirements. A simulator architecture in which simulator platform is located in the middle and modules for modeling, analyzing, and three dimensional visualizing are connected to that platform is suggested. Baseline concepts and requirements for simulator development are described. Result of trade study for selecting simulation platform and approaches of defining other simulator components are summarized. Finally, characters of lunar elevation map data which is necessary for lunar terrain generation is described.

  12. Near-Infrared Monitoring of Volatiles in Frozen Lunar Simulants While Drilling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roush, Ted L.; Colaprete, Anthony; Elphic, Richard C.; Forgione, Joshua; White, Bruce; McMurray, Robert; Cook, Amanda M.; Bielawski, Richard; Fritzler, Erin L.; Thompson, Sarah J.; hide

    2016-01-01

    In Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) focuses on using local resources for mission consumables. The approach can reduce mission cost and risk. Lunar polar volatiles, e.g. water ice, have been detected via remote sensing measurements and represent a potential resource for both humans and propellant. The exact nature of the horizontal and depth distribution of the ice remains to be documented in situ. NASA's Resource Prospector mission (RP) is intended to investigate the polar volatiles using a rover, drill, and the RESOLVE science package. RP component level hardware is undergoing testing in relevant lunar conditions (cryovacuum). In March 2015 a series of drilling tests were undertaken using the Honeybee Robotics RP Drill, Near-Infrared Volatile Spectrometer System (NIRVSS), and sample capture mechanisms (SCM) inside a 'dirty' thermal vacuum chamber at the NASA Glenn Research Center. The goal of these tests was to investigate the ability of NIRVSS to monitor volatiles during drilling activities and assess delivery of soil sample transfer to the SCMs in order to elucidate the concept of operations associated with this regolith sampling method.

  13. Lunar imaging and ionospheric calibration for the Lunar Cherenkov technique

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    McFadden, R.; Scholten, O.; Mevius, M.

    2013-01-01

    The Lunar Cherenkov technique is a promising method for UHE neutrino and cosmic ray detection which aims to detect nanosecond radio pulses produced during particle interactions in the Lunar regolith. For low frequency experiments, such as NuMoon, the frequency dependent dispersive effect of the

  14. Lunar surface fission power supplies: Radiation issues

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Houts, M.G.; Lee, S.K.

    1994-01-01

    A lunar space fission power supply shield that uses a combination of lunar regolith and materials brought from earth may be optimal for early lunar outposts and bases. This type of shield can be designed such that the fission power supply does not have to be moved from its landing configuration, minimizing handling and required equipment on the lunar surface. Mechanisms for removing heat from the lunar regolith are built into the shield, and can be tested on earth. Regolith activation is greatly reduced compared with a shield that uses only regolith, and it is possible to keep the thermal conditions of the fission power supply close to these seen in free space. For a well designed shield, the additional mass required to be brought fro earth should be less than 1000 kg. Detailed radiation transport calculations confirm the feasibility of such a shield

  15. Lunar surface fission power supplies: Radiation issues

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Houts, M.G.; Lee, S.K.

    1994-01-01

    A lunar space fission power supply shield that uses a combination of lunar regolith and materials brought from earth may be optimal for early lunar outposts and bases. This type of shield can be designed such that the fission power supply does not have to be moved from its landing configuration, minimizing handling and required equipment on the lunar surface. Mechanisms for removing heat from the lunar regolith are built into the shield, and can be tested on earth. Regolith activation is greatly reduced compared with a shield that uses only regolith, and it is possible to keep the thermal conditions of the fission power supply close to those seen in free space. For a well designed shield, the additional mass required to be brought from earth should be less than 1,000 kg. Detailed radiation transport calculations confirm the feasibility of such a shield

  16. Conceptual Design of Simulation Models in an Early Development Phase of Lunar Spacecraft Simulator Using SMP2 Standard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hoon Hee; Koo, Cheol Hea; Moon, Sung Tae; Han, Sang Hyuck; Ju, Gwang Hyeok

    2013-08-01

    The conceptual study for Korean lunar orbiter/lander prototype has been performed in Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI). Across diverse space programs around European countries, a variety of simulation application has been developed using SMP2 (Simulation Modelling Platform) standard related to portability and reuse of simulation models by various model users. KARI has not only first-hand experience of a development of SMP compatible simulation environment but also an ongoing study to apply the SMP2 development process of simulation model to a simulator development project for lunar missions. KARI has tried to extend the coverage of the development domain based on SMP2 standard across the whole simulation model life-cycle from software design to its validation through a lunar exploration project. Figure. 1 shows a snapshot from a visualization tool for the simulation of lunar lander motion. In reality, a demonstrator prototype on the right-hand side of image was made and tested in 2012. In an early phase of simulator development prior to a kick-off start in the near future, targeted hardware to be modelled has been investigated and indentified at the end of 2012. The architectural breakdown of the lunar simulator at system level was performed and the architecture with a hierarchical tree of models from the system to parts at lower level has been established. Finally, SMP Documents such as Catalogue, Assembly, Schedule and so on were converted using a XML(eXtensible Mark-up Language) converter. To obtain benefits of the suggested approaches and design mechanisms in SMP2 standard as far as possible, the object-oriented and component-based design concepts were strictly chosen throughout a whole model development process.

  17. Ground Simulations of Near-Surface Plasma Field and Charging at the Lunar Terminator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polansky, J.; Ding, N.; Wang, J.; Craven, P.; Schneider, T.; Vaughn, J.

    2012-12-01

    Charging in the lunar terminator region is the most complex and is still not well understood. In this region, the surface potential is sensitively influenced by both solar illumination and plasma flow. The combined effects from localized shadow generated by low sun elevation angles and localized wake generated by plasma flow over the rugged terrain can generate strongly differentially charged surfaces. Few models currently exist that can accurately resolve the combined effects of plasma flow and solar illumination over realistic lunar terminator topographies. This paper presents an experimental investigation of lunar surface charging at the terminator region in simulated plasma environments in a vacuum chamber. The solar wind plasma flow is simulated using an electron bombardment gridded Argon ion source. An electrostatic Langmuir probe, nude Faraday probes, a floating emissive probe, and retarding potential analyzer are used to quantify the plasma flow field. Surface potentials of both conducting and dielectric materials immersed in the plasma flow are measured with a Trek surface potential probe. The conducting material surface potential will simultaneously be measured with a high impedance voltmeter to calibrate the Trek probe. Measurement results will be presented for flat surfaces and objects-on-surface for various angles of attack of the plasma flow. The implications on the generation of localized plasma wake and surface charging at the lunar terminator will be discussed. (This research is supported by the NASA Lunar Advanced Science and Exploration Research program.)

  18. Electromagnetic particle-in-cell simulations of the solar wind interaction with lunar magnetic anomalies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deca, J; Divin, A; Lapenta, G; Lembège, B; Markidis, S; Horányi, M

    2014-04-18

    We present the first three-dimensional fully kinetic and electromagnetic simulations of the solar wind interaction with lunar crustal magnetic anomalies (LMAs). Using the implicit particle-in-cell code iPic3D, we confirm that LMAs may indeed be strong enough to stand off the solar wind from directly impacting the lunar surface forming a mini-magnetosphere, as suggested by spacecraft observations and theory. In contrast to earlier magnetohydrodynamics and hybrid simulations, the fully kinetic nature of iPic3D allows us to investigate the space charge effects and in particular the electron dynamics dominating the near-surface lunar plasma environment. We describe for the first time the interaction of a dipole model centered just below the lunar surface under plasma conditions such that only the electron population is magnetized. The fully kinetic treatment identifies electromagnetic modes that alter the magnetic field at scales determined by the electron physics. Driven by strong pressure anisotropies, the mini-magnetosphere is unstable over time, leading to only temporal shielding of the surface underneath. Future human exploration as well as lunar science in general therefore hinges on a better understanding of LMAs.

  19. Simulated Lunar Testing of Metabolic Heat Regenerated Temperature Swing Adsorption Technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Padilla, Sebastian A.; Bower, Chad; Iacomini, Christie S.; Paul, H.

    2011-01-01

    Metabolic heat regenerated Temperature Swing Adsorption (MTSA) technology is being developed for thermal and carbon dioxide (CO2) control for a Portable Life Support System (PLSS), as well as water recycling. An Engineering Development Unit (EDU) of the MTSA subassembly was designed and assembled for optimized Martian operations, but also meets system requirements for lunar operations. For lunar operations the MTSA sorption cycle is driven via a vacuum swing between suit ventilation loop pressure and lunar vacuum. The focus of this effort is operations and testing in a simulated lunar environment. This environment was simulated in Paragon s EHF vacuum chamber. The objective of this testing was to evaluate the full cycle performance of the MTSA Subassembly EDU, and to assess CO2 loading and pressure drop of the wash coated aluminum reticulated foam sorbent bed. The lunar testing proved out the feasibility of pure vacuum swing operation, making MTSA a technology that can be tested and used on the Moon prior to going to Mars. Testing demonstrated better than expected CO2 loading on the sorbent and nearly replicates the equilibrium data from the sorbent manufacturer. This had not been achieved in any of the previous sorbent loading tests performed by Paragon. Subsequently, the increased performance of the sorbent bed design indicates future designs will require less mass and volume than the current EDU rendering MTSA as very competitive for Martian PLSS applications.

  20. MoonMars Astronaut and CapCom Protocols: ESTEC and LunAres PMAS Simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Authier, L.; Blanc, A.; Foing, B. H.; Lillo, A.; Evellin, P.; Kołodziejczyk, A.; Heinicke, C.; Harasymczuk, M.; Chahla, C.; Tomic, A.; Hettrich, S.; PMAS Astronauts

    2017-10-01

    ILEWG developed since 2008 a Mobile Laboratory Habitat (ExoHab) at ESTEC which was tested during a short simulation in July. It was a foretaste of the PMAS mission on 31 July-14 August in LunAres base at Pila, with mission control in Torun, Poland.

  1. Solar wind radiation damage in lunar dust grains and the characteristics of the ancient solar wind

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Borg, J.; Chaumont, J.

    1980-01-01

    Current understanding of the exposure history of lunar dust grains to the ancient solar wind is reviewed, the work being based mostly on a Monte Carlo statistical code, describing the 'gardening' effects of the meteorite bombardment in the lunar regolith, and on analytical models, yielding the lifetimes of the grains against various types of destruction processes. Families of lunar dust grains are identified, and evidence is presented showing that lunar dust grains were not partially shielded from solar wind ions. Results of solar wind simulation experiments are used to interpret the thickness distribution of the amorphous coatings of solar wind radiation-damaged material observed on 1-micron lunar dust grains. It is argued that such distributions reflect the speed distribution of the ancient solar wind as averaged over periods of approximately 5000 years in duration, and that the ancient solar wind is less energetic than the present day solar wind

  2. DIHeDRAL: Downhole Regolith Interrogation with Helium-Assisted Drill and LIBS, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Future landed robotic missions to the lunar poles will seek to characterize the properties of subsurface regolith. Current instruments for such in-situ analysis,...

  3. DIHeDRAL: Downhole Regolith Interrogation with Helium-Assisted DRill And LIBS, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Future landed robotic missions to the lunar poles will seek to characterize the properties of subsurface regolith. Current instruments for such in-situ analysis,...

  4. Building components for an outpost on the Lunar soil by means of a novel 3D printing technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cesaretti, Giovanni; Dini, Enrico; De Kestelier, Xavier; Colla, Valentina; Pambaguian, Laurent

    2014-01-01

    3D-printing technologies are receiving an always increasing attention in architecture, due to their potential use for direct construction of buildings and other complex structures, also of considerable dimensions, with virtually any shape. Some of these technologies rely on an agglomeration process of inert materials, e.g. sand, through a special binding liquid and this capability is of interest for the space community for its potential application to space exploration. In fact, it opens the possibility for exploiting in-situ resources for the construction of buildings in harsh spatial environments. The paper presents the results of a study aimed at assessing the concept of 3D printing technology for building habitats on the Moon using lunar soil, also called regolith. A particular patented 3D-printing technology - D-shape - has been applied, which is, among the existing rapid prototyping systems, the closest to achieving full scale construction of buildings and the physical and chemical characteristics of lunar regolith and terrestrial regolith simulants have been assessed with respect to the working principles of such technology. A novel lunar regolith simulant has also been developed, which almost exactly reproduces the characteristics of the JSC-1A simulant produced in the US. Moreover, tests in air and in vacuum have been performed to demonstrate the occurrence of the reticulation reaction with the regolith simulant. The vacuum tests also showed that evaporation or freezing of the binding liquid can be prevented through a proper injection method. The general requirements of a Moon outpost have been specified, and a preliminary design of the habitat has been developed. Based on such design, a section of the outpost wall has been selected and manufactured at full scale using the D-shape printer and regolith simulant. Test pieces have also been manufactured and their mechanical properties have been assessed.

  5. A simulation of the Four-way lunar Lander-Orbiter tracking mode for the Chang'E-5 mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Fei; Ye, Mao; Yan, Jianguo; Hao, Weifeng; Barriot, Jean-Pierre

    2016-06-01

    The Chang'E-5 mission is the third phase of the Chinese Lunar Exploration Program and will collect and return lunar samples. After sampling, the Orbiter and the ascent vehicle will rendezvous and dock, and both spacecraft will require high precision orbit navigation. In this paper, we present a novel tracking mode-Four-way lunar Lander-Orbiter tracking that possibly can be employed during the Chang'E-5 mission. The mathematical formulas for the Four-way lunar Lander-Orbiter tracking mode are given and implemented in our newly-designed lunar spacecraft orbit determination and gravity field recovery software, the LUnar Gravity REcovery and Analysis Software/System (LUGREAS). The simulated observables permit analysis of the potential contribution Four-way lunar Lander-Orbiter tracking could make to precision orbit determination for the Orbiter. Our results show that the Four-way lunar Lander-Orbiter Range Rate has better geometric constraint on the orbit, and is more sensitive than the traditional two-way range rate that only tracks data between the Earth station and lunar Orbiter. After combining the Four-way lunar Lander-Orbiter Range Rate data with the traditional two-way range rate data and considering the Lander position error and lunar gravity field error, the accuracy of precision orbit determination for the Orbiter in the simulation was improved significantly, with the biggest improvement being one order of magnitude, and the Lander position could be constrained to sub-meter level. This new tracking mode could provide a reference for the Chang'E-5 mission and have enormous potential for the positioning of future lunar farside Lander due to its relay characteristic.

  6. Lightweight Bulldozer Attachment for Construction and Excavation on the Lunar Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Robert; Wilkinson, R. Allen; Gallo, Christopher A.; Nick, Andrew J.; Schuler, Jason M.; King, Robert H.

    2009-01-01

    A lightweight bulldozer blade prototype has been designed and built to be used as an excavation implement in conjunction with the NASA Chariot lunar mobility platform prototype. The combined system was then used in a variety of field tests in order to characterize structural loads, excavation performance and learn about the operational behavior of lunar excavation in geotechnical lunar simulants. The purpose of this effort was to evaluate the feasibility of lunar excavation for site preparation at a planned NASA lunar outpost. Once the feasibility has been determined then the technology will become available as a candidate element in the NASA Lunar Surface Systems Architecture. In addition to NASA experimental testing of the LANCE blade, NASA engineers completed analytical work on the expected draft forces using classical soil mechanics methods. The Colorado School of Mines (CSM) team utilized finite element analysis (FEA) to study the interaction between the cutting edge of the LANCE blade and the surface of soil. FEA was also used to examine various load cases and their effect on the lightweight structure of the LANCE blade. Overall it has been determined that a lunar bulldozer blade is a viable technology for lunar outpost site preparation, but further work is required to characterize the behavior in 1/6th G and actual lunar regolith in a vacuum lunar environment.

  7. Production of Lunar Oxygen Through Vacuum Pyrolysis

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Matchett, John

    2006-01-01

    .... The vacuum pyrolysis method of oxygen production from lunar regolith presents a viable option for in situ propellant production because of its simple operation involving limited resources from earth...

  8. Sources and Transportation of Bulk, Low-Cost Lunar Simulant Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rickman, D. L.

    2013-01-01

    Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) has built the Lunar Surface Testbed using 200 tons of volcanic cinder and ash from the same source used for the simulant series JSC-1. This Technical Memorandum examines the alternatives examined for transportation and source. The cost of low-cost lunar simulant is driven by the cost of transportation, which is controlled by distance and, to a lesser extent, quantity. Metabasalts in the eastern United States were evaluated due to their proximity to MSFC. Volcanic cinder deposits in New Mexico, Colorado, and Arizona were recognized as preferred sources. In addition to having fewer green, secondary minerals, they contain vesicular glass, both of which are desirable. Transportation costs were more than 90% of the total procurement costs for the simulant material.

  9. Broadband permittivity measurements on porous planetary regoliths simulants, in relation with the Rosetta mission to 67P/C-G

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brouet, Yann; Levasseur-Regourd, Anny-Chantal; Encrenaz, Pierre; Sabouroux, Pierre; Heggy, Essam; Kofman, Wlodek; Thomas, Nick

    2015-04-01

    The Rosetta mission has successfully rendezvous comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (hereafter 67P) last year and landed Philae module on its nucleus on 12 November it 2014. Among instruments onboard Rosetta, MIRO [1], composed of two radiometers, with receivers at 190 GHz and 563 GHz (center-band), is dedicated to the measurements of the subsurface and surface brightness temperatures. These values depend on the complex relative permittivity (hereafter permittivity) with ɛ' and ɛ'' the real and imaginary parts. The permittivity of the material depends on frequency, bulk density/porosity, composition and temperature [2]. Considering the very low bulk density of 67P nucleus (about 450 kg.m-3 [3]) and the suspected presence of a dust mantle in many areas of the nucleus [4], investigations on the permittivity of porous granular samples are needed to support the interpretation of MIRO data, as well as of other microwave experiments onboard Rosetta, e.g. CONSERT [5], a bistatic penetrating radar working at 90 MHz. We have developed a programme of permittivity measurements on porous granular samples over a frequency range from 50 MHz to 190 GHz under laboratory conditions (e.g. [6] and [7]). We present new results obtained on JSC-1A lunar soil simulant and ashes from Etna. The samples were split into several sub-samples with different size ranges covering a few to 500 μm. Bulk densities of the sub-samples were carefully measured and found to be in the 800-1400 kg.m-3 range. Sub-samples were also dried and volumetric moisture content was found to be below 0.6%. From 50 MHz to 6 GHz and at 190 GHz, the permittivity has been determined, respectively with a coaxial cell and with a quasi-optical bench mounted in transmission, both connected to a vector network analyzer. The results demonstrate the dispersive behaviours of ɛ' between 50 MHz and 190 GHz. Values of ɛ' remain within the 3.9-2.6 range for all sub-samples. At CONSERT frequency, ɛ'' is within the 0.01-0.09 range

  10. Lunar Regolith Stabilization for Excavation, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Establishing human presence outside the protective cover of earth's atmosphere is a challenge. On earth, the atmosphere does not only present breathing gas, it also...

  11. Structure of the lunar wake: Two-dimensional global hybrid simulations

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Trávníček, Pavel; Hellinger, Petr; Schriver, D.; Bale, S. D.

    2005-01-01

    Roč. 32, - (2005), L06102/1-L06102/4 ISSN 0094-8276 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA205/05/1011 Grant - others:ESA(XE) PRODEX 14529; NSF(US) INT- 0010111; NASA (US) NAG5-11804 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z30420517 Keywords : hybrid simulations * lunar wake Subject RIV: BL - Plasma and Gas Discharge Physics Impact factor: 2.491, year: 2005

  12. Lunar Lava Tube Sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    York, Cheryl Lynn; Walden, Bryce; Billings, Thomas L.; Reeder, P. Douglas

    1992-01-01

    Large (greater than 300 m diameter) lava tube caverns appear to exist on the Moon and could provide substantial safety and cost benefits for lunar bases. Over 40 m of basalt and regolith constitute the lava tube roof and would protect both construction and operations. Constant temperatures of -20 C reduce thermal stress on structures and machines. Base designs need not incorporate heavy shielding, so lightweight materials can be used and construction can be expedited. Identification and characterization of lava tube caverns can be incorporated into current precursor lunar mission plans. Some searches can even be done from Earth. Specific recommendations for lunar lava tube search and exploration are (1) an Earth-based radar interferometer, (2) an Earth-penetrating radar (EPR) orbiter, (3) kinetic penetrators for lunar lava tube confirmation, (4) a 'Moon Bat' hovering rocket vehicle, and (5) the use of other proposed landers and orbiters to help find lunar lava tubes.

  13. Construction with Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Robert P.

    2017-01-01

    CLASS node of SSERVI at FSI, The Technology and Future of In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU): ACapstone Graduate Seminar Orlando, FL. This seminar will discuss the use of regolith and robotics in extra terrestrialconstruction.

  14. Electromagnetic Simulations of Ground-Penetrating Radar Propagation near Lunar Pits and Lava Tubes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmerman, M. I.; Carter, L. M.; Farrell, W. M.; Bleacher, J. E.; Petro, N. E.

    2013-01-01

    Placing an Orion capsule at the Earth-Moon L2 point (EML2) would potentially enable telerobotic operation of a rover on the lunar surface. The Human Exploration Virtual Institute (HEVI) is proposing that rover operations be carried out near one of the recently discovered lunar pits, which may provide radiation shielding for long duration human stays as well as a cross-disciplinary, science-rich target for nearer-term telerobotic exploration. Ground penetrating radar (GPR) instrumentation included onboard a rover has the potential to reveal many details of underground geologic structures near a pit, as well as characteristics of the pit itself. In the present work we employ the full-wave electromagnetic code MEEP to simulate such GPR reflections from a lunar pit and other subsurface features including lava tubes. These simulations will feed forward to mission concepts requiring knowledge of where to hide from harmful radiation and other environmental hazards such as plama charging and extreme diurnal temperatures.

  15. Experimental Simulations of Lunar Magma Ocean Crystallization: The Plot (But Not the Crust) Thickens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Draper, D. S.; Rapp, J. F.; Elardo, S. M.; Shearer, C. K., Jr.; Neal, C. R.

    2016-01-01

    Numerical models of differentiation of a global-scale lunar magma ocean (LMO) have raised as many questions as they have answered. Recent orbital missions and sample studies have provided new context for a large range of lithologies, from the comparatively magnesian "purest anorthosite" reported by to Si-rich domes and spinel-rich clasts with widespread areal distributions. In addition, the GRAIL mission provided strong constraints on lunar crustal density and average thickness. Can this increasingly complex geology be accounted for via the formation and evolution of the LMO? We have in recent years been conducting extensive sets of petrologic experiments designed to fully simulate LMO crystallization, which had not been attempted previously. Here we review the key results from these experiments, which show that LMO differentiation is more complex than initial models suggested. Several important features expected from LMO crystallization models have yet to be reproduced experimentally; combined modelling and experimental work by our group is ongoing.

  16. Research on rat's pulmonary acute injury induced by lunar soil simulant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Yan; Liu, Jin-Guo; Zheng, Yong-Chun; Xiao, Chun-Ling; Wan, Bing; Guo, Li; Wang, Xu-Guang; Bo, Wei

    2018-02-01

    The steps to the moon never stopped after the Apollo Project. Lessons from manned landings on the moon have shown that lunar dust has great influence on the health of astronauts. In this paper, comparative studies between the lunar soil simulant (LSS) and PM2.5 were performed to discover their harm to human biological systems and explore the methods of prevention and treatment of dust poisoning for future lunar manned landings. Rats were randomly divided into the control group, two CAS-1 lunar soil simulant groups (tracheal perfusion with 7 mg and 0.7 mg, respectively, in a 1-mL volume) and the PM2.5 group (tracheal perfusion with 0.7 mg in a 1-mL volume). The biochemical indicators in the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF), MPO activity in the lung tissue, pathologic changes, and inflammatory cells in the BALF were measured after 4 h and 24 h. The LSS group showed cytotoxicity that was closely related to the concentration. The figures of the two LSS groups (4 and 24 h) show that the alveolar septa were thickened. Additionally, it was observed that neutrophils had infiltrated, and various levels of inflammation occurred around the vascular and bronchial structures. The overall results of the acute effects of the lungs caused by dust showed that the lung toxicity of LSS was greater than that of PM2.5. LSS could induce lung damage and inflammatory lesions. The biomarkers in BALF caused by acute injury were consistent with histopathologic observations. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Taiwan LLC.

  17. Field Testing of a Pneumatic Regolith Feed System During a 2010 ISRU Field Campaign on Mauna Kea, Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Craft, Jack; Zacny, Kris; Chu, Philip; Wilson, Jack; Santoro, Chris; Carlson, Lee; Maksymuk, Michael; Townsend, Ivan I.; Mueller, Robert P.; Mantovani, James G.

    2010-01-01

    Lunar In Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) consists of a number of tasks starting with mining of lunar regolith, followed by the transfer of regolith to an oxygen extraction reactor and finally processing the regolith and storing of extracted oxygen. The transfer of regolith from the regolith hopper at the ground level to an oxygen extraction reactor many feet above the surface could be accomplished in different ways, including using a mechanical auger, bucket ladder system or a pneumatic system. The latter system is commonly used on earth when moving granular materials since it offers high reliability and simplicity of operation. In this paper, we describe a pneumatic regolith feed system, delivering feedstock to a Carbothermal reactor and lessons learned from deploying the system during the 2010 ISRU field campaign on the Mauna Kea, Hawaii.

  18. Synodic and semiannual oscillations of argon-40 in the lunar exosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodges, R. Richard; Mahaffy, Paul R.

    2016-01-01

    The neutral mass spectrometer on the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) spacecraft collected a trove of exospheric data, including a set of high-quality measurements of radiogenic 40Ar over a period of 142 days. Data synthesis studies, using well-established exosphere simulation tools, show that the LADEE argon data are consistent with an exosphere-regolith interaction that is dominated by adsorption and that the desorption process generates the Armand distribution of exit velocities. The synthesis work has uncovered an apparent semiannual oscillation of argon that is consistent with temporal sequestration in the seasonal cold traps created at the poles by the obliquity of the Moon. In addition, the LADEE data provide new insight into the pristine nature of lunar regolith, its spatially varying sorption properties, and the influence of sorption processes on the synodic oscillation of the argon exosphere.

  19. Research on Impact Process of Lander Footpad against Simulant Lunar Soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bo Huang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The safe landing of a Moon lander and the performance of the precise instruments it carries may be affected by too heavy impact on touchdown. Accordingly, landing characteristics have become an important research focus. Described in this paper are model tests carried out using simulated lunar soils of different relative densities (called “simulant” lunar soils below, with a scale reduction factor of 1/6 to consider the relative gravities of the Earth and Moon. In the model tests, the lander was simplified as an impact column with a saucer-shaped footpad with various impact landing masses and velocities. Based on the test results, the relationships between the footpad peak feature responses and impact kinetic energy have been analyzed. Numerical simulation analyses were also conducted to simulate the vertical impact process. A 3D dynamic finite element model was built for which the material parameters were obtained from laboratory test data. When compared with the model tests, the numerical model proved able to effectively simulate the dynamic characteristics of the axial forces, accelerations, and penetration depths of the impact column during landing. This numerical model can be further used as required for simulating oblique landing impacts.

  20. Experimental reduction of simulated lunar glass by carbon and hydrogen and implications for lunar base oxygen production

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mckay, D.S.; Morris, R.V.; Jurewicz, A.J.

    1991-01-01

    The most abundant element in lunar rocks and soils is oxygen which makes up approximately 45 percent by weight of the typical lunar samples returned during the Apollo missions. This oxygen is not present as a gas but is tightly bound to other elements in mineral or glass. When people return to the Moon to explore and live, the extraction of this oxygen at a lunar outpost may be a major goal during the early years of operation. Among the most studied processes for oxygen extraction is the reduction of ilmenite by hydrogen gas to form metallic iron, titanium oxide, and oxygen. A related process is proposed which overcomes some of the disadvantages of ilmenite reduction. It is proposed that oxygen can be extracted by direct reduction of native lunar pyroclactic glass using either carbon, carbon monoxide, or hydrogen. In order to evaluate the feasibility of this proposed process a series of experiments on synthetic lunar glass are presented. The results and a discussion of the experiments are presented

  1. Integrated Bio-ISRU and Life Support Systems at the Lunar Outpost: Concept and Preliminary Results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, I. I.; Garrison, D. H.; Allen, C. C.; Pickering, K.; Sarkisova, S. A.; Galindo, C., Jr.; Pan, D.; Foraker, E.; Mckay, D. S.

    2009-01-01

    We continue the development of our concept of a biotechnological loop for in-situ resource extraction along with propellant and food production at a future lunar outpost, based on the cultivation of litholytic cyanobacteria (LCB) with lunar regolith (LR) in a geobioreactor energized by sunlight. Our preliminary studies have shown that phototropic cultivation of LCB with simulants of LR in a low-mineralized medium supplemented with CO2 leads to rock dissolution (bioweathering) with the resulting accumulation of Fe, Mg and Al in cyanobacterial cells and in the medium. LCB cultivated with LR simulants produces more O2 than the same organisms cultivated in a high-mineralized medium. The loss of rock mass after bioweathering with LCB suggests the release of O from regolith. Further studies of chemical pathways of released O are required. The bioweathering process is limited by the availability of CO2, N, and P. Since lunar regolith is mainly composed of O, Si, Ca, Al and Mg, we propose to use organic waste to supply a geobioreactor with C, N and P. The recycling of organic waste, including urine, through a geobioreactor will allow for efficient element extraction as well as oxygen and biomass production. The most critical conclusion is that a biological life support system tied to a geobioreactor might be more efficient for supporting an extraterrestrial outpost than a closed environmental system.

  2. Development of a Lunar Borehole Seismometer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Passmore, P. R.; Siegler, M.; Malin, P. E.; Passmore, K.; Zacny, K.; Avenson, B.; Weber, R. C.; Schmerr, N. C.; Nagihara, S.

    2017-12-01

    Nearly all seismic stations on Earth are buried below the ground. Burial provides controlled temperatures and greater seismic coupling at little cost. This is also true on the Moon and other planetary bodies. Burial of a seismometer under just 1 meter of lunar regolith would provide an isothermal environment and potentially reduce signal scattering noise by an order of magnitude. Here we explain how we will use an existing NASA SBIR and PIDDP funded subsurface heat flow probe deployment system to bury a miniaturized, broadband, optical seismometer 1 meter below the lunar surface. The system is sensitive, low mass and low power. We believe this system offers a compelling architecture for NASA's future seismic exploration of the solar system. We will report on a prototype 3-axis, broadband seismometer package that has been tested under low pressure conditions in lunar-regolith simulant. The deployment mechanism reaches 1m depth in less than 25 seconds. Our designed and tested system: 1) Would be deployed at least 1m below the lunar surface to achieve isothermal conditions without thermal shielding or heaters, increase seismic coupling, and decrease noise. 2) Is small (our prototype probe is a cylinder 50mm in diameter, 36cm long including electronics, potentially as small as 10 cm with sensors only). 3) Is low-mass (each sensor is 0.1 kg, so an extra redundancy 4-component seismograph plus 1.5 kg borehole sonde and recorder weighs less than 2 kg and is feasibly smaller with miniaturized electronics). 4) Is low-power (our complete 3-sensor borehole seismographic system's power consumption is about half a Watt, or 7% of Apollo's 7.1 W average and 30% of the InSight SEIS's 1.5W winter-time heating system). 5) Is broadband and highly sensitive (the "off the shelf" sensors have a wide passband: 0.005-1000 Hz - and high dynamic range of 183 dB (or about 10-9g Hz-1/2, with hopes for simple modifications to be at least an order of magnitude better). Burial also aids the

  3. Multiphysics Modeling for Dimensional Analysis of a Self-Heated Molten Regolith Electrolysis Reactor for Oxygen and Metals Production on the Moon and Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dominguez, Jesus A.; Sibille, Laurent

    2010-01-01

    The technology of direct electrolysis of molten lunar regolith to produce oxygen and molten metal alloys has progressed greatly in the last few years. The development of long-lasting inert anodes and cathode designs as well as techniques for the removal of molten products from the reactor has been demonstrated. The containment of chemically aggressive oxide and metal melts is very difficult at the operating temperatures ca 1600 C. Containing the molten oxides in a regolith shell can solve this technical issue and can be achieved by designing a self-heating reactor in which the electrolytic currents generate enough Joule heat to create a molten bath. In a first phase, a thermal analysis model was built to study the formation of a melt of lunar basaltic regolith irradiated by a focused solar beam This mode of heating was selected because it relies on radiative heat transfer, which is the dominant mode of transfer of energy in melts at 1600 C. Knowing and setting the Gaussian-type heat flux from the concentrated solar beam and the phase and temperature dependent thermal properties, the model predicts the dimensions and temperature profile of the melt. A validation of the model is presented in this paper through the experimental formation of a spherical cap melt realized by others. The Orbitec/PSI experimental setup uses an 3.6-cm diameter concentrated solar beam to create a hemispheric melt in a bed of lunar regolith simulant contained in a large pot. Upon cooling, the dimensions of the vitrified melt are measured to validate the thermal model. In a second phase, the model is augmented by multiphysics components to compute the passage of electrical currents between electrodes inserted in the molten regolith. The current through the melt generates Joule heating due to the high resistivity of the medium and this energy is transferred into the melt by conduction, convection and primarily by radiation. The model faces challenges in two major areas, the change of phase as

  4. A Monte Carlo model for the exposure history of lunar dust grains in the ancient solar wind

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Borg, J.; Comstock, G.M.; Langevin, Y.; Maurette, M.; Jouffrey, B.; Jouret, C.

    1976-01-01

    The theoretical motion of the individual dust grains in the lunar regolith is analyzed by using a Monte Carlo statistical code where the variables are the mass and speed distribution of meteorites at the lunar surface and the geometrical shape of impact craters. From these computations the detailed irradiation history of the grains in the ancient solar wind is traced back, over a period of 4 billion years, as a function of the grain-size. Then by combining this irradiation scheme with the results of solar wind simulation experiments, the time and depth dependent accumulation of solar wind effects in the theoretical grains (solar wind maturation) is inferred. Finally, the validity of these predictions is tentatively checked by discussing a variety of physical and chemical solar wind effects which are registered in the surface layers of lunar dust grains. Therefore these studies give a tentative scenario for the 'maturation' of the lunar regolith with respect to solar wind effects, but they also reveal useful guidelines to deduce meaningful information from such effects. In particular, they suggest a 'lunar skin' sampling technique for extracting dust grains in lunar core tubes which could help in deciphering the past activity of the ancient solar wind over a time scale of several billion years. (Auth.)

  5. Lunar ash flows - Isothermal approximation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pai, S. I.; Hsieh, T.; O'Keefe, J. A.

    1972-01-01

    Suggestion of the ash flow mechanism as one of the major processes required to account for some features of lunar soil. First the observational background and the gardening hypothesis are reviewed, and the shortcomings of the gardening hypothesis are shown. Then a general description of the lunar ash flow is given, and a simple mathematical model of the isothermal lunar ash flow is worked out with numerical examples to show the differences between the lunar and the terrestrial ash flow. The important parameters of the ash flow process are isolated and analyzed. It appears that the lunar surface layer in the maria is not a residual mantle rock (regolith) but a series of ash flows due, at least in part, to great meteorite impacts. The possibility of a volcanic contribution is not excluded. Some further analytic research on lunar ash flows is recommended.

  6. Particle-In-Cell Simulations of the Solar Wind Interaction with Lunar Crustal Magnetic Anomalies: Magnetic Cusp Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poppe, A. R.; Halekas, J. S.; Delory, G. T.; Farrell, W. M.

    2012-01-01

    As the solar wind is incident upon the lunar surface, it will occasionally encounter lunar crustal remanent magnetic fields. These magnetic fields are small-scale, highly non-dipolar, have strengths up to hundreds of nanotesla, and typically interact with the solar wind in a kinetic fashion. Simulations, theoretical analyses, and spacecraft observations have shown that crustal fields can reflect solar wind protons via a combination of magnetic and electrostatic reflection; however, analyses of surface properties have suggested that protons may still access the lunar surface in the cusp regions of crustal magnetic fields. In this first report from a planned series of studies, we use a 1 1/2-dimensional, electrostatic particle-in-cell code to model the self-consistent interaction between the solar wind, the cusp regions of lunar crustal remanent magnetic fields, and the lunar surface. We describe the self-consistent electrostatic environment within crustal cusp regions and discuss the implications of this work for the role that crustal fields may play regulating space weathering of the lunar surface via proton bombardment.

  7. Lunar In-Situ Volatile Extraction, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — A method of extracting volatile resources from the Lunar regolith is proposed to reduce the launch mass and cost of bringing such resources from the Earth to enable...

  8. Impact-Actuated Digging Tool for Lunar Excavation, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Honeybee Robotics proposes to develop a vacuum compatible, impact-actuated digging tool for the excavation of frozen and compacted regolith on the lunar surface and...

  9. Beneficiation of Stillwater Complex Rock for the Production of Lunar Simulants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rickman, D. L.; Young, C.; Stoeser, D.; Edmunson, J.

    2014-01-01

    The availability of pure, high calcium plagioclase would be a significant asset in any attempt to manufacture high-quality lunar simulants. A suitable plagioclase product can be obtained from materials obtained from the Stillwater Complex of Montana. The access, geology, petrology, and mineralogy of the relevant rocks and the mill tailings are described here. This study demonstrates successful plagioclase recovery from mill tailings produced by the Stillwater Mine Company. Hydrogen peroxide was used to remove carboxymethyl cellulose from the tailing. The characteristics of the plagioclase products are shown and locked grains are identified as a limit to achievable purity. Based on the experimental results, flowsheets were developed showing how these resources could be processed and made into 'separates' of (1) high calcium plagioclase and (2) orthopyroxene/clinopyroxene with the thought that they would be combined later to make simulant.

  10. Lunar Oxygen Production and Metals Extraction Using Ionic Liquids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marone, Matthew; Paley, Mark Steven; Donovan, David N.; Karr, Laurel J.

    2009-01-01

    Initial results indicate that ionic liquids are promising media for the extraction of oxygen from lunar regolith. IL acid systems can solubilize regolith and produce water with high efficiency. IL electrolytes are effective for water electrolysis, and the spent IL acid media are capable of regeneration.

  11. Lunar Water Resource Demonstration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muscatello, Anthony C.

    2008-01-01

    In cooperation with the Canadian Space Agency, the Northern Centre for Advanced Technology, Inc., the Carnegie-Mellon University, JPL, and NEPTEC, NASA has undertaken the In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) project called RESOLVE. This project is a ground demonstration of a system that would be sent to explore permanently shadowed polar lunar craters, drill into the regolith, determine what volatiles are present, and quantify them in addition to recovering oxygen by hydrogen reduction. The Lunar Prospector has determined these craters contain enhanced hydrogen concentrations averaging about 0.1%. If the hydrogen is in the form of water, the water concentration would be around 1%, which would translate into billions of tons of water on the Moon, a tremendous resource. The Lunar Water Resource Demonstration (LWRD) is a part of RESOLVE designed to capture lunar water and hydrogen and quantify them as a backup to gas chromatography analysis. This presentation will briefly review the design of LWRD and some of the results of testing the subsystem. RESOLVE is to be integrated with the Scarab rover from CMIJ and the whole system demonstrated on Mauna Kea on Hawaii in November 2008. The implications of lunar water for Mars exploration are two-fold: 1) RESOLVE and LWRD could be used in a similar fashion on Mars to locate and quantify water resources, and 2) electrolysis of lunar water could provide large amounts of liquid oxygen in LEO, leading to lower costs for travel to Mars, in addition to being very useful at lunar outposts.

  12. Lunar heat-flow experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langseth, M. G.

    1977-01-01

    The principal components of the experiment were probes, each with twelve thermometers of exceptional accuracy and stability, that recorded temperature variations at the surface and in the regolith down to 2.5 m. The Apollo 15 experiment and the Apollo 17 probes recorded lunar surface and subsurface temperatures. These data provided a unique and valuable history of the interaction of solar energy with lunar surface and the effects of heat flowing from the deep interior out through the surface of the moon. The interpretation of these data resulted in a clearer definition of the thermal and mechanical properties of the upper two meters of lunar regolith, direct measurements of the gradient in mean temperature due to heat flow from the interior and a determination of the heat flow at the Apollo 15 and Apollo 17 sites.

  13. Charged-particle track analysis, thermoluminescence and microcratering studies of lunar samples

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Durrani, S.A.

    1977-01-01

    Studies of lunar samples (from both Apollo and Luna missions) have been carried out, using track analysis and thermoluminescence (t.l.) techniques, with a view to shedding light on the radiation and temperature histories of the Moon. In addition, microcraters in lunar glasses have been studied in order to elucidate the cosmic-dust impact history of the lunar regolith. In tracks studies, the topics discussed include the stabilizing effect of the thermal annealing of fossil tracks due to the lunar temperature cycle; the 'radiation annealing' of fresh heavy-ion tracks by large doses of protons (to simulate the effect of lunar radiation-damage on track registration); and correction factors for the anisotropic etching of crystals which are required in reconstructing the exposure history of lunar grains. An abundance ratio of ca. (1.1 + 0.3) x 10 -3 has been obtained, by the differential annealing technique, for the nuclei beyond the iron group to those within that group in the cosmic rays incident on the Moon. The natural t.l. of lunar samples has been used to estimate their effective storage temperature and mean depth below the surface. The results of the study of natural and artificially produced microcraters have been studied. (author)

  14. Regolith thickness over Sinus Iridum: Results from morphology and size-frequency distribution of small impact craters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fa, Wenzhe; Liu, Tiantian; Zhu, Meng-Hua; Haruyama, Junichi

    2014-08-01

    High-resolution optical images returned from recent lunar missions provide a new chance for estimation of lunar regolith thickness using morphology and the size-frequency distribution of small impact craters. In this study, regolith thickness over the Sinus Iridum region is estimated using Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC) Narrow Angle Cameras (NACs) images. A revised relationship between crater geometry and regolith thickness is proposed based on old experimental data that takes into considering the effect of the illumination angle of the images. In total, 227 high-resolution LROC NAC images are used, and 378,556 impact craters with diameters from 4.2 to 249.8 m are counted, and their morphologies are identified. Our results show that 50% of the Sinus Iridum region has a regolith thickness between 5.1 and 10.7 m, and the mean and median regolith thicknesses are 8.5 and 8.0 m, respectively. There are substantial regional variations in the regolith thickness, with its median value varying from 2.6 to 12.0 m for most regions. Local variations of regolith thickness are found to be correlated with the lunar surface age: the older the surface, the greater the thickness. In addition, sporadically distributed impact ejecta and crater rays are associated with relatively larger regolith thickness, which might result from excavation and transport of materials during the formation of the secondaries of Copernican-aged craters. Our estimated regolith thickness can help with future analysis of Chang'E-3 lunar penetrating radar echoes and studies of the subsurface stratigraphic structure of the Moon.

  15. Modelling of Lunar Dust and Electrical Field for Future Lunar Surface Measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Yunlong

    Modelling of the lunar dust and electrical field is important to future human and robotic activities on the surface of the moon. Apollo astronauts had witnessed the maintaining of micron- and millimeter sized moon dust up to meters level while walked on the surface of the moon. The characterizations of the moon dust would enhance not only the scientific understanding of the history of the moon but also the future technology development for the surface operations on the moon. It has been proposed that the maintaining and/or settlement of the small-sized dry dust are related to the size and weight of the dust particles, the level of the surface electrical fields on the moon, and the impaction and interaction between lunar regolith and the solar particles. The moon dust distributions and settlements obviously affected the safety of long term operations of future lunar facilities. For the modelling of the lunar dust and the electrical field, we analyzed the imaging of the legs of the moon lander, the cover and the footwear of the space suits, and the envelope of the lunar mobiles, and estimated the size and charges associated with the small moon dust particles, the gravity and charging effects to them along with the lunar surface environment. We also did numerical simulation of the surface electrical fields due to the impaction of the solar winds in several conditions. The results showed that the maintaining of meters height of the micron size of moon dust is well related to the electrical field and the solar angle variations, as expected. These results could be verified and validated through future on site and/or remote sensing measurements and observations of the moon dust and the surface electrical field.

  16. Observing Ice Sublimation From Water-Doped Lunar Simulant at Cryogenic Temperatures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roush, T. L.; Teodoro, L. F. A.; Colaprete, A.; Cook, A. M.; Elphic, R.

    2018-01-01

    NASA's Resource Prospector (RP) mission is intended to characterize the three-dimensional nature of volatiles in lunar polar and permanently shadowed regions. The Near-Infrared Volatile Spectrometer System (NIRVSS) observes while a drill penetrates to a maximum depth of 1 m. Any 10 cm increment of soil identified as containing water ice can be delivered to a heating crucible with the evolved gas delivered to a gas chromatograph / mass spectrometer. NIRVSS consists of two components; a spectrometer box (SB) and bracket assembly (BA), connected by two fiber optic cables. The SB contains separate short- and long-wavelength spectrometers, SW and LW respectively, that collectively span the 1600-3400 nm range. The BA contains an IR emitter (lamp), drill observation camera (DOC, 2048 x 2048 CMOS detector), 8 different wavelength LEDs, and a longwave calibration sensor (LCS) measuring the surface emissivity at four IR wavelengths. Tests of various RP sub-systems have been under-taken in a large cryo-vacuum chamber at Glenn Re-search Center. The chamber accommodates a tube (1.2 m high x 25.4 cm diameter) filled with lunar simulant, NU-LHT-3M, prepared with known abundances of water. Thermocouples are embedded at different depths, and also across the surface of the soil tube. In the chamber the tube is cooled with LN2 as the pressure is reduced to approx. 5-6x10(exp -6) Torr. For the May 2016 tests two soil tubes were prepared with initially 2.5 Wt.% water. The shroud surrounding the soil tube was held at different temperatures for each tube to simulate a warm and cold lunar environment. Table 1 provides a summary of experimental conditions and Figure 1 shows the nominal view of the NIRVSS components, the drill foot, and the top of the soil tube. Once the average soil temperature reached approx. 178 K, drilling commenced. During drilling activities NIRVSS was alternating between obtaining spectra and obtaining images. Here we discuss NIRVSS spectral data obtained during

  17. Experimental Investigation of InSight HP3 Mole Interaction with Martian Regolith Simulant. Quasi-Static and Dynamic Penetration Testing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, Jason P.; Hudson, Troy L.; Andrade, José E.

    2017-10-01

    The InSight mission launches in 2018 to characterize several geophysical quantities on Mars, including the heat flow from the planetary interior. This quantity will be calculated by utilizing measurements of the thermal conductivity and the thermal gradient down to 5 meters below the Martian surface. One of the components of InSight is the Mole, which hammers into the Martian regolith to facilitate these thermal property measurements. In this paper, we experimentally investigated the effect of the Mole's penetrating action on regolith compaction and mechanical properties. Quasi-static and dynamic experiments were run with a 2D model of the 3D cylindrical mole. Force resistance data was captured with load cells. Deformation information was captured in images and analyzed using Digitial Image Correlation (DIC). Additionally, we used existing approximations of Martian regolith thermal conductivity to estimate the change in the surrounding granular material's thermal conductivity due to the Mole's penetration. We found that the Mole has the potential to cause a high degree of densification, especially if the initial granular material is relatively loose. The effect on the thermal conductivity from this densification was found to be relatively small in first-order calculations though more complete thermal models incorporating this densification should be a subject of further investigation. The results obtained provide an initial estimate of the Mole's impact on Martian regolith thermal properties.

  18. Plume Mitigation: Soil Erosion and Lunar Prospecting Sensor Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Metzger, Philip T.

    2014-01-01

    Demonstrate feasibility of the simplest, lowest-mass method of measuring density of a cloud of lunar soil ejected by rocket exhaust, using new math techniques with a small baseline laser/camera system. Focus is on exploring the erosion process that occurs when the exhaust plume of a lunar rocket impacts the regolith. Also, predicting the behavior of the lunar soil that would be blasted from a lunar landing/launch site shall assist in better design and protection of any future lunar settlement from scouring of structures and equipment. NASA is gathering experimental data to improve soil erosion models and understand how lunar particles enter the plume flow.

  19. A PFC3D-based numerical simulation of cutting load for lunar rock simulant and experimental validation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Peng; Jiang, Shengyuan; Tang, Dewei; Xu, Bo

    2017-05-01

    For sake of striking a balance between the need of drilling efficiency and the constrains of power budget on the moon, the penetrations per revolution of drill bit are generally limited in the range around 0.1 mm, and besides the geometric angle of the cutting blade need to be well designed. This paper introduces a simulation approach based on PFC3D (particle flow code 3 dimensions) for analyzing the cutting load feature on lunar rock simulant, which is derived from different geometric-angle blades with a small cutting depth. The mean values of the cutting force of five blades in the survey region (four on the boundary points and one on the center point) are selected as the macroscopic responses of model. The method of experimental design which includes Plackett-Burman (PB) design and central composite design (CCD) method is adopted in the matching procedure of microparameters in PFC model. Using the optimization method of enumeration, the optimum set of microparameters is acquired. Then, the experimental validation is implemented by using other twenty-five blades with different geometric angles, and the results from both simulations and laboratory tests give fair agreements. Additionally, the rock breaking process cut by different blades are quantified from simulation analysis. This research provides the theoretical support for the refinement of the rock cutting load prediction and the geometric design of cutting blade on the drill bit.

  20. Numerical Simulation of Rocket Exhaust Interaction with Lunar Soil, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Rocket plume impingement may cause significant damage and contaminate co-landed spacecraft and surrounding habitat structures during Lunar landing operations. Under...

  1. Indigenous lunar construction materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogers, Wayne P.; Sture, Stein

    1991-01-01

    The utilization of local resources for the construction and operation of a lunar base can significantly reduce the cost of transporting materials and supplies from Earth. The feasibility of processing lunar regolith to form construction materials and structural components is investigated. A preliminary review of potential processing methods such as sintering, hot-pressing, liquification, and cast basalt techniques, was completed. The processing method proposed is a variation on the cast basalt technique. It involves liquification of the regolith at 1200-1300 C, casting the liquid into a form, and controlled cooling. While the process temperature is higher than that for sintering or hot-pressing (1000-1100 C), this method is expected to yield a true engineering material with low variability in properties, high strength, and the potential to form large structural components. A scenario for this processing method was integrated with a design for a representative lunar base structure and potential construction techniques. The lunar shelter design is for a modular, segmented, pressurized, hemispherical dome which could serve as habitation and laboratory space. Based on this design, estimates of requirements for power, processing equipment, and construction equipment were made. This proposed combination of material processing method, structural design, and support requirements will help to establish the feasibility of lunar base construction using indigenous materials. Future work will refine the steps of the processing method. Specific areas where more information is needed are: furnace characteristics in vacuum; heat transfer during liquification; viscosity, pouring and forming behavior of molten regolith; design of high temperature forms; heat transfer during cooling; recrystallization of basalt; and refinement of estimates of elastic moduli, compressive and tensile strength, thermal expansion coefficient, thermal conductivity, and heat capacity. The preliminary

  2. An Evidence-based Approach to Developing a Management Strategy for Medical Contingencies on the Lunar Surface: The NASA/Haughton-Mars Project (HMP) 2006 Lunar Medical Contingency Simulation at Devon Island

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheuring, R. A.; Jones, J. A.; Lee, P.; Comtois, J. M.; Chappell, S.; Rafiq, A.; Braham, S.; Hodgson, E.; Sullivan, P.; Wilkinson, N.; hide

    2007-01-01

    The lunar architecture for future sortie and outpost missions will require humans to serve on the lunar surface considerably longer than the Apollo moon missions. Although the Apollo crewmembers sustained few injuries during their brief lunar surface activity, injuries did occur and are a concern for the longer lunar stays. Interestingly, lunar medical contingency plans were not developed during Apollo. In order to develop an evidence-base for handling a medical contingency on the lunar surface, a simulation using the moon-Mars analog environment at Devon Island, Nunavut, high Canadian Arctic was conducted. Objectives of this study included developing an effective management strategy for dealing with an incapacitated crewmember on the lunar surface, establishing audio/visual and biomedical data connectivity to multiple centers, testing rescue/extraction hardware and procedures, and evaluating in suit increased oxygen consumption. Methods: A review of the Apollo lunar surface activities and personal communications with Apollo lunar crewmembers provided the knowledge base of plausible scenarios that could potentially injure an astronaut during a lunar extravehicular activity (EVA). Objectives were established to demonstrate stabilization and transfer of an injured crewmember and communication with ground controllers at multiple mission control centers. Results: The project objectives were successfully achieved during the simulation. Among these objectives were extraction from a sloped terrain by a two-member crew in a 1 g analog environment, establishing real-time communication to multiple centers, providing biomedical data to flight controllers and crewmembers, and establishing a medical diagnosis and treatment plan from a remote site. Discussion: The simulation provided evidence for the types of equipment and methods for performing extraction of an injured crewmember from a sloped terrain. Additionally, the necessary communications infrastructure to connect

  3. Electromagnetic energy applied to and gained from lunar materials

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Meek, T.T.; Vaniman, D.T.; Blake, R.D.; Cocks, F.H.

    1986-01-01

    Electromagnetic energy may be useful in microwave frequencies for in-situ melting or sintering of lunar regolith. Simple configurations of magnetron or gyrotron tubes might be constructed for unique melting geometries. For energy production, lunar ilmenite has potential applications in photovoltaic devices. 11 refs., 11 figs

  4. Level of Automation and Failure Frequency Effects on Simulated Lunar Lander Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marquez, Jessica J.; Ramirez, Margarita

    2014-01-01

    A human-in-the-loop experiment was conducted at the NASA Ames Research Center Vertical Motion Simulator, where instrument-rated pilots completed a simulated terminal descent phase of a lunar landing. Ten pilots participated in a 2 x 2 mixed design experiment, with level of automation as the within-subjects factor and failure frequency as the between subjects factor. The two evaluated levels of automation were high (fully automated landing) and low (manual controlled landing). During test trials, participants were exposed to either a high number of failures (75% failure frequency) or low number of failures (25% failure frequency). In order to investigate the pilots' sensitivity to changes in levels of automation and failure frequency, the dependent measure selected for this experiment was accuracy of failure diagnosis, from which D Prime and Decision Criterion were derived. For each of the dependent measures, no significant difference was found for level of automation and no significant interaction was detected between level of automation and failure frequency. A significant effect was identified for failure frequency suggesting failure frequency has a significant effect on pilots' sensitivity to failure detection and diagnosis. Participants were more likely to correctly identify and diagnose failures if they experienced the higher levels of failures, regardless of level of automation

  5. The Lunar Dust Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szalay, Jamey Robert

    Planetary bodies throughout the solar system are continually bombarded by dust particles, largely originating from cometary activities and asteroidal collisions. Surfaces of bodies with thick atmospheres, such as Venus, Earth, Mars and Titan are mostly protected from incoming dust impacts as these particles ablate in their atmospheres as 'shooting stars'. However, the majority of bodies in the solar system have no appreciable atmosphere and their surfaces are directly exposed to the flux of high speed dust grains. Impacts onto solid surfaces in space generate charged and neutral gas clouds, as well as solid secondary ejecta dust particles. Gravitationally bound ejecta clouds forming dust exospheres were recognized by in situ dust instruments around the icy moons of Jupiter and Saturn, and had not yet been observed near bodies with refractory regolith surfaces before NASA's Lunar Dust and Environment Explorer (LADEE) mission. In this thesis, we first present the measurements taken by the Lunar Dust Explorer (LDEX), aboard LADEE, which discovered a permanently present, asymmetric dust cloud surrounding the Moon. The global characteristics of the lunar dust cloud are discussed as a function of a variety of variables such as altitude, solar longitude, local time, and lunar phase. These results are compared with models for lunar dust cloud generation. Second, we present an analysis of the groupings of impacts measured by LDEX, which represent detections of dense ejecta plumes above the lunar surface. These measurements are put in the context of understanding the response of the lunar surface to meteoroid bombardment and how to use other airless bodies in the solar system as detectors for their local meteoroid environment. Third, we present the first in-situ dust measurements taken over the lunar sunrise terminator. Having found no excess of small grains in this region, we discuss its implications for the putative population of electrostatically lofted dust.

  6. Lunar and Planetary Science XXXV: Moon and Mercury

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-01-01

    The session" Moon and Mercury" included the following reports:Helium Production of Prompt Neutrinos on the Moon; Vapor Deposition and Solar Wind Implantation on Lunar Soil-Grain Surfaces as Comparable Processes; A New Lunar Geologic Mapping Program; Physical Backgrounds to Measure Instantaneous Spin Components of Terrestrial Planets from Earth with Arcsecond Accuracy; Preliminary Findings of a Study of the Lunar Global Megaregolith; Maps Characterizing the Lunar Regolith Maturity; Probable Model of Anomalies in the Polar Regions of Mercury; Parameters of the Maximum of Positive Polarization of the Moon; Database Structure Development for Space Surveying Results by Moon -Zond Program; CM2-type Micrometeoritic Lunar Winds During the Late Heavy Bombardment; A Comparison of Textural and Chemical Features of Spinel Within Lunar Mare Basalts; The Reiner Gamma Formation as Characterized by Earth-based Photometry at Large Phase Angles; The Significance of the Geometries of Linear Graben for the Widths of Shallow Dike Intrusions on the Moon; Lunar Prospector Data, Surface Roughness and IR Thermal Emission of the Moon; The Influence of a Magma Ocean on the Lunar Global Stress Field Due to Tidal Interaction Between the Earth and Moon; Variations of the Mercurian Photometric Relief; A Model of Positive Polarization of Regolith; Ground Truth and Lunar Global Thorium Map Calibration: Are We There Yet?;and Space Weathering of Apollo 16 Sample 62255: Lunar Rocks as Witness Plates for Deciphering Regolith Formation Processes.

  7. A MATLAB based Distributed Real-time Simulation of Lander-Orbiter-Earth Communication for Lunar Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choudhury, Diptyajit; Angeloski, Aleksandar; Ziah, Haseeb; Buchholz, Hilmar; Landsman, Andre; Gupta, Amitava; Mitra, Tiyasa

    Lunar explorations often involve use of a lunar lander , a rover [1],[2] and an orbiter which rotates around the moon with a fixed radius. The orbiters are usually lunar satellites orbiting along a polar orbit to ensure visibility with respect to the rover and the Earth Station although with varying latency. Communication in such deep space missions is usually done using a specialized protocol like Proximity-1[3]. MATLAB simulation of Proximity-1 have been attempted by some contemporary researchers[4] to simulate all features like transmission control, delay etc. In this paper it is attempted to simulate, in real time, the communication between a tracking station on earth (earth station), a lunar orbiter and a lunar rover using concepts of Distributed Real-time Simulation(DRTS).The objective of the simulation is to simulate, in real-time, the time varying communication delays associated with the communicating elements with a facility to integrate specific simulation modules to study different aspects e.g. response due to a specific control command from the earth station to be executed by the rover. The hardware platform comprises four single board computers operating as stand-alone real time systems (developed by MATLAB xPC target and inter-networked using UDP-IP protocol). A time triggered DRTS approach is adopted. The earth station, the orbiter and the rover are programmed as three standalone real-time processes representing the communicating elements in the system. Communication from one communicating element to another constitutes an event which passes a state message from one element to another, augmenting the state of the latter. These events are handled by an event scheduler which is the fourth real-time process. The event scheduler simulates the delay in space communication taking into consideration the distance between the communicating elements. A unique time synchronization algorithm is developed which takes into account the large latencies in space

  8. Lunar Penetrating Radar onboard the Chang'e-3 mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Guang-You; Zhou, Bin; Ji, Yi-Cai; Zhang, Qun-Ying; Shen, Shao-Xiang; Li, Yu-Xi; Guan, Hong-Fei; Tang, Chuan-Jun; Gao, Yun-Ze; Lu, Wei; Ye, Sheng-Bo; Han, Hai-Dong; Zheng, Jin; Wang, Shu-Zhi

    2014-12-01

    Lunar Penetrating Radar (LPR) is one of the important scientific instruments onboard the Chang'e-3 spacecraft. Its scientific goals are the mapping of lunar regolith and detection of subsurface geologic structures. This paper describes the goals of the mission, as well as the basic principles, design, composition and achievements of the LPR. Finally, experiments on a glacier and the lunar surface are analyzed.

  9. Simulation-Based Lunar Telerobotics Design, Acquisition and Training Platform for Virtual Exploration, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This Phase I proposal will develop a virtual test fixture performing a high caliber 3D dynamic reproduction of an prototype lunar bucket wheel excavator prototype...

  10. Simulation-Based Lunar Telerobotics Design, Acquisition and Training Platform for Virtual Exploration, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Meeting the objectives of returning to the moon by 2020 will require NASA to fly a series of telerobotic lunar orbital and surface vehicles to prove the viability of...

  11. Investigation of element distributions in Luna-16 regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuznetsov, R. A.; Lure, B. G.; Minevich, V. Ia.; Stiuf, V. I.; Pankratov, V. B.

    1981-03-01

    The concentrations of 32 elements in fractions of different grain sizes in the samples of the lunar regolith brought back by Luna-16 are determined by means of neutron activation analysis. Four groups of elements are distinguished on the basis of the variations of their concentration with grain size, and concentration variations of the various elements with sample depth are also noted. Chemical leaching of the samples combined with neutron activation also reveals differences in element concentrations in the water soluble, metallic, sulphide, phosphate, rare mineral and rock phases of the samples. In particular, the rare earth elements are observed to be depleted in the regolith with respect to chondritic values, and to be concentrated in the phase extracted with 14 M HNO3.

  12. 3D Additive Construction with Regolith for Surface Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Robert P.

    2014-01-01

    Planetary surface exploration on Asteroids, the Moon, Mars and Martian Moons will require the stabilization of loose, fine, dusty regolith to avoid the effects of vertical lander rocket plume impingement, to keep abrasive and harmful dust from getting lofted and for dust free operations. In addition, the same regolith stabilization process can be used for 3 Dimensional ( 3D) printing, additive construction techniques by repeating the 2D stabilization in many vertical layers. This will allow in-situ construction with regolith so that materials will not have to be transported from Earth. Recent work in the NASA Kennedy Space Center (KSC) Surface Systems Office (NE-S) Swamp Works and at the University of Southern California (USC) under two NASA Innovative Advanced Concept (NIAC) awards have shown promising results with regolith (crushed basalt rock) materials for in-situ heat shields, bricks, landing/launch pads, berms, roads, and other structures that could be fabricated using regolith that is sintered or mixed with a polymer binder. The technical goals and objectives of this project are to prove the feasibility of 3D printing additive construction using planetary regolith simulants and to show that they have structural integrity and practical applications in space exploration.

  13. Organic Matter Responses to Radiation under Lunar Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matthewman, Richard; Crawford, Ian A.; Jones, Adrian P.; Joy, Katherine H.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Large bodies, such as the Moon, that have remained relatively unaltered for long periods of time have the potential to preserve a record of organic chemical processes from early in the history of the Solar System. A record of volatiles and impactors may be preserved in buried lunar regolith layers that have been capped by protective lava flows. Of particular interest is the possible preservation of prebiotic organic materials delivered by ejected fragments of other bodies, including those originating from the surface of early Earth. Lava flow layers would shield the underlying regolith and any carbon-bearing materials within them from most of the effects of space weathering, but the encapsulated organic materials would still be subject to irradiation before they were buried by regolith formation and capped with lava. We have performed a study to simulate the effects of solar radiation on a variety of organic materials mixed with lunar and meteorite analog substrates. A fluence of ∼3 × 1013 protons cm−2 at 4–13 MeV, intended to be representative of solar energetic particles, has little detectable effect on low-molecular-weight (≤C30) hydrocarbon structures that can be used to indicate biological activity (biomarkers) or the high-molecular-weight hydrocarbon polymer poly(styrene-co-divinylbenzene), and has little apparent effect on a selection of amino acids (≤C9). Inevitably, more lengthy durations of exposure to solar energetic particles may have more deleterious effects, and rapid burial and encapsulation will always be more favorable to organic preservation. Our data indicate that biomarker compounds that may be used to infer biological activity on their parent planet can be relatively resistant to the effects of radiation and may have a high preservation potential in paleoregolith layers on the Moon. Key Words: Radiation—Moon—Regolith—Amino acids—Biomarkers. Astrobiology 16, 900–912. PMID:27870583

  14. Kalman filter application to mitigate the errors in the trajectory simulations due to the lunar gravitational model uncertainty

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gonçalves, L D; Rocco, E M; De Moraes, R V; Kuga, H K

    2015-01-01

    This paper aims to simulate part of the orbital trajectory of Lunar Prospector mission to analyze the relevance of using a Kalman filter to estimate the trajectory. For this study it is considered the disturbance due to the lunar gravitational potential using one of the most recent models, the LP100K model, which is based on spherical harmonics, and considers the maximum degree and order up to the value 100. In order to simplify the expression of the gravitational potential and, consequently, to reduce the computational effort required in the simulation, in some cases, lower values for degree and order are used. Following this aim, it is made an analysis of the inserted error in the simulations when using such values of degree and order to propagate the spacecraft trajectory and control. This analysis was done using the standard deviation that characterizes the uncertainty for each one of the values of the degree and order used in LP100K model for the satellite orbit. With knowledge of the uncertainty of the gravity model adopted, lunar orbital trajectory simulations may be accomplished considering these values of uncertainty. Furthermore, it was also used a Kalman filter, where is considered the sensor's uncertainty that defines the satellite position at each step of the simulation and the uncertainty of the model, by means of the characteristic variance of the truncated gravity model. Thus, this procedure represents an effort to approximate the results obtained using lower values for the degree and order of the spherical harmonics, to the results that would be attained if the maximum accuracy of the model LP100K were adopted. Also a comparison is made between the error in the satellite position in the situation in which the Kalman filter is used and the situation in which the filter is not used. The data for the comparison were obtained from the standard deviation in the velocity increment of the space vehicle. (paper)

  15. Adsorption of Hg on lunar samples

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reed, G.W. Jr.; Jovanovic, S.

    1985-01-01

    Understanding the presence, migration mechanisms and trapping of indigneous gases and volatiles on the moon is the objective of this study. The rare gases Ar and Xe and highly volatile Hg 0 and Br 0 (and/or their compounds) have been determined to be present in the lunar regolith. Evidence for these elements in the moon was recently reviewed. Studies of the sorption behavior of Xe on lunar material have been carried out. We report here preliminary results of a study designed to rationalize the behavior of Hg in lunar material

  16. Lunar CATALYST

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Lunar Cargo Transportation and Landing by Soft Touchdown (Lunar CATALYST) is a NASA initiative to encourage the development of U.S. private-sector robotic lunar...

  17. Regolith Derived Heat Shield for Planetary Body Entry and Descent System with In Situ Fabrication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hogue, Michael D.; Meuller, Robert P.; Sibille, Laurent; Hintze, Paul E.; Rasky, Daniel J.

    2012-01-01

    . Platinum, titanium, helium 3, and other metals, elements and minerals are all high-value commodities in limited supply on Earth, and it may be profitable to mine these substances throughout the Solar System and return them to Earth, if an economical method can be found. To date, several private corporations have been launched to pursue these goals. Because the heat shield is the last element to be used in an Earth-return mission, a high penalty is paid in the propellant mass required to carry the heat shield to the destination and back. If the heat shield could be manufactured in space, and then outfitted on the spacecraft prior to the reentry at Earth, then significant propellant and mass savings could be achieved during launch and space operations. Preliminary mission architecture scenarios are described, which explain the potential benefits that may be derived from using an in-situ fabricated regolith heat shield. In order to prove that this is a feasible technology concept, this project successfully fabricated heat shield materials from mineral simulant materials of lunar and Martian regolith by two methods: 1) Sintering and 2) Binding the simulant with a "room-temperature vulcanizing" (RTV) silicone formulated to withstand high temperatures. Initially a third type of fabrication was planned using the hot waste stream from regolith ISRU processes. This fabrication method was discarded since the resulting samples would be too dense and brittle for heat shields. High temperature flame tests at KSC and subsequent arc jet tests at Ames Research Center (ARC) have proved promising. These coupon tests show favorable materials properties and have the potential to be a new way of fabricating heat shields for space entry into planetary atmospheres.

  18. Concentrations of radioactive elements in lunar materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korotev, Randy L.

    1998-01-01

    As an aid to interpreting data obtained remotely on the distribution of radioactive elements on the lunar surface, average concentrations of K, U, and Th as well as Al, Fe, and Ti in different types of lunar rocks and soils are tabulated. The U/Th ratio in representative samples of lunar rocks and regolith is constant at 0.27; K/Th ratios are more variable because K and Th are carried by different mineral phases. In nonmare regoliths at the Apollo sites, the main carriers of radioactive elements are mafic (i.e., 6-8 percent Fe) impact-melt breccias created at the time of basin formation and products derived therefrom.

  19. Prospective Ukrainian lunar orbiter mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shkuratov, Y.; Litvinenko, L.; Shulga, V.; Yatskiv, Y.; Kislyuk, V.

    Ukraine has launch vehicles that are able to deliver about 300 kg to the lunar orbit. Future Ukrainian lunar program may propose a polar orbiter. This orbiter should fill principal information gaps in our knowledge about the Moon after Clementine and Lunar Prospector missions and the future missions, like Smart-1, Lunar-A, and Selene. We consider that this can be provided by radar studies of the Moon with supporting optical polarimetric observations from lunar polar orbit. These experiments allow one to better understand global structure of the lunar surface in a wide range of scales, from microns to kilometers. We propose three instruments for the prospective lunar orbiter. They are: a synthetic aperture imaging radar (SAR), ground-penetrating radar (GPR), and imaging polarimeter (IP). The main purpose of SAR is to study with high resolution (50 m) the permanently shadowed sites in the lunar polar regions. These sites are cold traps for volatiles, and have a potential of resource utilization. Possible presence of water ice in the regolith in the sites makes them interesting for permanent manned bases on the Moon. Radar imaging and mapping of other interesting regions could be also planned. Multi-frequencies multi-polarization soun d ing of the lunar surface with GPR can provide information about internal structure of the lunar surface from meters to several hundred meters deep. GPR can be used for measuring the megaregolith layer properties, detection of cryptomaria, and studies of internal structure of the largest craters. IP will be a CCD camera with an additional suite of polarizers. Modest spatial resolution (100 m) should provide a total coverage or a large portion of the lunar surface in oblique viewing basically at large phase angles. Polarization degree at large (>90°) phase angles bears information about characteristic size of the regolith particles. Additional radiophysical experiments are considered with the use of the SAR system, e.g., bistatic radar

  20. Formation of polymer micro-agglomerations in ultralow-binder-content composite based on lunar soil simulant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Tzehan; Chow, Brian J.; Zhong, Ying; Wang, Meng; Kou, Rui; Qiao, Yu

    2018-02-01

    We report results from an experiment on high-pressure compaction of lunar soil simulant (LSS) mixed with 2-5 wt% polymer binder. The LSS grains can be strongly held together, forming an inorganic-organic monolith (IOM) with the flexural strength around 30-40 MPa. The compaction pressure, the number of loadings, the binder content, and the compaction duration are important factors. The LSS-based IOM remains strong from -200 °C to 130 °C, and is quite gas permeable.

  1. The Lunar Transit Telescope (LTT) - An early lunar-based science and engineering mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mcgraw, John T.

    1992-01-01

    The Sentinel, the soft-landed lunar telescope of the LTT project, is described. The Sentinel is a two-meter telescope with virtually no moving parts which accomplishes an imaging survey of the sky over almost five octaves of the electromagnetic spectrum from the ultraviolet into the infrared, with an angular resolution better than 0.1 arsec/pixel. The Sentinel will incorporate innovative techniques of interest for future lunar-based telescopes and will return significant engineering data which can be incorporated into future lunar missions. The discussion covers thermal mapping of the Sentinel, measurement of the cosmic ray flux, lunar dust, micrometeoroid flux, the lunar atmosphere, and lunar regolith stability and seismic activity.

  2. Volatiles in the Martian regolith

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Clark, B.C.; Baird, A.K.

    1979-01-01

    An inventory of released volatiles on Mars has been derived based upon Viking measurements of atmospheric and surface chemical composition, and upon the inferred mineralogy of a ubiquitous regolith, assumed to average 200m in depth. This model is consistent with the relative abundances of volatiles (except for S) on the Earth's surface, but implies one-fifteenth of the volatile release of Earth if starting materials were comparable. All constituents are accommodated as chemical components of, or absorbed phases on, regolith materials--without the necessity of invoking unobservable deposits of carbonates, nitrates, or permafrost ice

  3. Water and Regolith Shielding for Surface Reactor Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poston, David I.; Ade, Brian J.; Sadasivan, Pratap; Leichliter, Katrina J.; Dixon, David D.

    2006-01-01

    This paper investigates potential shielding options for surface power fission reactors. The majority of work is focused on a lunar shield that uses a combination of water in stainless-steel cans and lunar regolith. The major advantage of a water-based shield is that development, testing, and deployment should be relatively inexpensive. This shielding approach is used for three surface reactor concepts: (1) a moderated spectrum, NaK cooled, Hastalloy/UZrH reactor, (2) a fast-spectrum, NaK-cooled, SS/UO2 reactor, and (3) a fast-spectrum, K-heat-pipe-cooled, SS/UO2 reactor. For this study, each of these reactors is coupled to a 25-kWt Stirling power system, designed for 5 year life. The shields are designed to limit the dose both to the Stirling alternators and potential astronauts on the surface. The general configuration used is to bury the reactor, but several other options exist as well. Dose calculations are presented as a function of distance from reactor, depth of buried hole, water boron concentration (if any), and regolith repacked density.

  4. Water and Regolith Shielding for Surface Reactor Missions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Poston, David I.; Sadasivan, Pratap; Dixon, David D.; Ade, Brian J.; Leichliter, Katrina J.

    2006-01-01

    This paper investigates potential shielding options for surface power fission reactors. The majority of work is focused on a lunar shield that uses a combination of water in stainless-steel cans and lunar regolith. The major advantage of a water-based shield is that development, testing, and deployment should be relatively inexpensive. This shielding approach is used for three surface reactor concepts: (1) a moderated spectrum, NaK cooled, Hastalloy/UZrH reactor, (2) a fast-spectrum, NaK-cooled, SS/UO2 reactor, and (3) a fast-spectrum, K-heat-pipe-cooled, SS/UO2 reactor. For this study, each of these reactors is coupled to a 25-kWt Stirling power system, designed for 5 year life. The shields are designed to limit the dose both to the Stirling alternators and potential astronauts on the surface. The general configuration used is to bury the reactor, but several other options exist as well. Dose calculations are presented as a function of distance from reactor, depth of buried hole, water boron concentration (if any), and regolith repacked density

  5. Evolution of Shock Melt Compositions in Lunar Agglutinates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vance, A. M.; Christoffersen, R.; Keller, L. P.

    2015-01-01

    Lunar agglutinates are aggregates of regolith grains fused together in a glassy matrix of shock melt produced during smaller-scale (mostly micrometeorite) impacts. Agglutinate formation is a key space weathering process under which the optically-active component of nanophase metallic Fe (npFe(sup 0)) is added to the lunar regolith. Here we have used energy-dispersive X-ray (EDX) compositional spectrum imaging in the SEM to quantify the chemical homogeneity of agglutinitic glass, correlate its homogeneity to its parent soil maturity, and identify the principle chemical components contributing to the shock melt compositional variations.

  6. Impact of Drilling Operations on Lunar Volatiles Capture: Thermal Vacuum Tests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinhenz, Julie E.; Paulsen, Gale; Zacny, Kris; Smith, Jim

    2015-01-01

    In Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) enables future planetary exploration by using local resources to supply mission consumables. This idea of 'living off the land' has the potential to reduce mission cost and risk. On the moon, water has been identified as a potential resource (for life support or propellant) at the lunar poles, where it exists as ice in the subsurface. However, the depth and content of this resource has yet to be confirmed on the ground; only remote detection data exists. The upcoming Resource Prospector mission (RP) will 'ground-truth' the water using a rover, drill, and the RESOLVE science package. As the 2020 planned mission date nears, component level hardware is being tested in relevant lunar conditions (thermal vacuum). In August 2014 a series of drilling tests were performed using the Honeybee Robotics Lunar Prospecting Drill inside a 'dirty' thermal vacuum chamber at the NASA Glenn Research Center. The drill used a unique auger design to capture and retain the lunar regolith simulant. The goal of these tests was to investigate volatiles (water) loss during drilling and sample transfer to a sample crucible in order to validate this regolith sampling method. Twelve soil samples were captured over the course of two tests at pressures of 10(exp-5) Torr and ambient temperatures between -80C to -20C. Each sample was obtained from a depth of 40 cm to 50 cm within a cryogenically frozen bed of NU-LHT-3M lunar regolith simulant doped with 5 wt% water. Upon acquisition, each sample was transferred and hermetically sealed inside a crucible. The samples were later baked out to determine water wt% and in turn volatile loss by following ASTM standard practices. Of the twelve tests, four sealed properly and lost an average of 30% of their available water during drilling and transfer. The variability in the results correlated well with ambient temperature (lower the temperature lower volatiles loss) and the trend agreed with the sublimation rates for the

  7. Investigation of dust particles with future Russian lunar missions: achievements of further development of PmL instrument.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuznetsov, Ilya; Zakharov, Alexander; Afonin, Valeri; Seran, Elena; Godefroy, Michel; Shashkova, Inna; Lyash, Andrey; Dolnikov, Gennady; Popel, Sergey; Lisin, Evgeny

    2016-07-01

    One of the complicating factors of the future robotic and human lunar landing missions is the influence of the dust. Meteorites bombardment has accompanied by shock-explosive phenomena, disintegration and mix of the lunar soil in depth and on area simultaneously. As a consequence, the lunar soil has undergone melting, physical and chemical transformations. Recently we have the some reemergence for interest of Moon investigation. The prospects in current century declare USA, China, India, and European Union. In Russia also prepare two missions: Luna-Glob and Luna-Resource. Not last part of investigation of Moon surface is reviewing the dust condition near the ground of landers. Studying the properties of lunar dust is important both for scientific purposes to investigation the lunar exosphere component and for the technical safety of lunar robotic and manned missions. The absence of an atmosphere on the Moon's surface is leading to greater compaction and sintering. Properties of regolith and dust particles (density, temperature, composition, etc.) as well as near-surface lunar exosphere depend on solar activity, lunar local time and position of the Moon relative to the Earth's magneto tail. Upper layers of regolith are an insulator, which is charging as a result of solar UV radiation and the constant bombardment of charged particles, creates a charge distribution on the surface of the moon: positive on the illuminated side and negative on the night side. Charge distribution depends on the local lunar time, latitude and the electrical properties of the regolith (the presence of water in the regolith can influence the local distribution of charge). On the day side of Moon near surface layer there exists possibility formation dusty plasma system. Altitude of levitation is depending from size of dust particle and Moon latitude. The distribution of dust particles by size and altitude has estimated with taking into account photoelectrons, electrons and ions of solar wind

  8. Lunar nuclear power plant design for thermal-hydraulic cooling in nano-scale environment: Nuclear engineering-based interdisciplinary nanotechnology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Woo, Tae Ho

    2015-01-01

    The environment of the Moon is nearly vacant, which has very low density of several kinds of gases. It has the molecular level contents of the lunar atmosphere in Table 1, which is recognized that radiation heat transfer is a major cooling method. The coolant of the nuclear power plant (NPP) in the lunar base is the Moon surface soil , which is known as the regolith. The regolith is the layer of loose and heterogeneous material covering the solid rock. For finding the optimized length of the radiator of the coolant in the lunar NPP, the produced power and Moon environmental temperature are needed. This makes the particular heat transfer characteristics in heat transfer in the Moon surface. The radiation is the only heat transfer way due to very weak atmosphere. It is very cold in the night time and very hot in the daytime on the surface of the ground. There are comparisons between lunar high land soil and Earth averages in Table 2. In the historical consideration, Konstantin Tsiolkovsky made a suggestion for the colony on the Moon.. There are a number of ideas for the conceptual design which have been proposed by several scientists. In 1954, Arthur C. Clarke mentioned a lunar base of inflatable modules covered in lunar dust for insulation. John S. Rinehart suggested the structure of the stationary ocean of dust, because there could be a mile-deep dust ocean on the Moon, which gives a safer design. In 1959, the project horizon was launched regarding the U.S. Army's plan to establish a fort on the Moon by 1967. H. H. Koelle, a German rocket engineer of the Army Ballistic Missile Agency, leaded the project (ABMA). There was the first landing in 1965 and 245 tons of cargos were transported to the outpost by 1966. The coolant material of regolith in the Moon is optimized for the NPP. By the simulation, there are some results. The temperature is calculated as the 9 nodals by radiation heat transfer from the potassium coolant to the regolith flow. The high efficiency

  9. Lunar nuclear power plant design for thermal-hydraulic cooling in nano-scale environment: Nuclear engineering-based interdisciplinary nanotechnology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Woo, Tae Ho [Systemix Global Co. Ltd., Seoul (Korea, Republic of)

    2015-05-15

    The environment of the Moon is nearly vacant, which has very low density of several kinds of gases. It has the molecular level contents of the lunar atmosphere in Table 1, which is recognized that radiation heat transfer is a major cooling method. The coolant of the nuclear power plant (NPP) in the lunar base is the Moon surface soil , which is known as the regolith. The regolith is the layer of loose and heterogeneous material covering the solid rock. For finding the optimized length of the radiator of the coolant in the lunar NPP, the produced power and Moon environmental temperature are needed. This makes the particular heat transfer characteristics in heat transfer in the Moon surface. The radiation is the only heat transfer way due to very weak atmosphere. It is very cold in the night time and very hot in the daytime on the surface of the ground. There are comparisons between lunar high land soil and Earth averages in Table 2. In the historical consideration, Konstantin Tsiolkovsky made a suggestion for the colony on the Moon.. There are a number of ideas for the conceptual design which have been proposed by several scientists. In 1954, Arthur C. Clarke mentioned a lunar base of inflatable modules covered in lunar dust for insulation. John S. Rinehart suggested the structure of the stationary ocean of dust, because there could be a mile-deep dust ocean on the Moon, which gives a safer design. In 1959, the project horizon was launched regarding the U.S. Army's plan to establish a fort on the Moon by 1967. H. H. Koelle, a German rocket engineer of the Army Ballistic Missile Agency, leaded the project (ABMA). There was the first landing in 1965 and 245 tons of cargos were transported to the outpost by 1966. The coolant material of regolith in the Moon is optimized for the NPP. By the simulation, there are some results. The temperature is calculated as the 9 nodals by radiation heat transfer from the potassium coolant to the regolith flow. The high efficiency

  10. Lunar sample studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1977-01-01

    Lunar samples discussed and the nature of their analyses are: (1) an Apollo 15 breccia which is thoroughly analyzed as to the nature of the mature regolith from which it derived and the time and nature of the lithification process, (2) two Apollo 11 and one Apollo 12 basalts analyzed in terms of chemistry, Cross-Iddings-Pirsson-Washington norms, mineralogy, and petrography, (3) eight Apollo 17 mare basalts, also analyzed in terms of chemistry, Cross-Iddings-Pirsson-Washington norms, mineralogy, and petrography. The first seven are shown to be chemically similar although of two main textural groups; the eighth is seen to be distinct in both chemistry and mineralogy, (4) a troctolitic clast from a Fra Mauro breccia, analyzed and contrasted with other high-temperature lunar mineral assemblages. Two basaltic clasts from the same breccia are shown to have affinities with rock 14053, and (5) the uranium-thorium-lead systematics of three Apollo 16 samples are determined; serious terrestrial-lead contamination of the first two samples is attributed to bandsaw cutting in the lunar curatorial facility

  11. Glass and Glass-Ceramic Materials from Simulated Composition of Lunar and Martian Soils: Selected Properties and Potential Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ray, C. S.; Sen, S.; Reis, S. T.; Kim, C. W.

    2005-01-01

    In-situ resource processing and utilization on planetary bodies is an important and integral part of NASA's space exploration program. Within this scope and context, our general effort is primarily aimed at developing glass and glass-ceramic type materials using lunar and martian soils, and exploring various applications of these materials for planetary surface operations. Our preliminary work to date have demonstrated that glasses can be successfully prepared from melts of the simulated composition of both lunar and martian soils, and the melts have a viscosity-temperature window appropriate for drawing continuous glass fibers. The glasses are shown to have the potential for immobilizing certain types of nuclear wastes without deteriorating their chemical durability and thermal stability. This has a direct impact on successfully and economically disposing nuclear waste generated from a nuclear power plant on a planetary surface. In addition, these materials display characteristics that can be manipulated using appropriate processing protocols to develop glassy or glass-ceramic magnets. Also discussed in this presentation are other potential applications along with a few selected thermal, chemical, and structural properties as evaluated up to this time for these materials.

  12. Extraction and Capture of Water from Martian Regolith Experimental Proof-of-Concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linne, Diane; Kleinhenz, Julie; Bauman, Steve; Johnson, Kyle

    2016-01-01

    Mars Design Reference Architecture 5.0:Lists in-situ resource utilization (ISRU) as enabling for robust human Mars missionsLO2LCH4 ascent propulsion 25,000 kg oxygen from atmosphere for ascent and life support Atmospheric based ISRU processes less operationally complex than surface based limited concept evaluation to date and Mars surface water property and distribution uncertainty would not allow [Mars soil water processing] to be base lined at this time Limited Concept Evaluation to Date Lunar regolith O2 extraction processing experience Lunar regolith is fluidized and heated to high temperatures with H2 to produce H2O from iron-bearing minerals Mars similarity concept: Soil placed in fluidized bed reactor Heated to moderate temperatures Inert gas flow used to fluidize the bed and help with water desorption Challenges: High-temperature dusty seals Working gas requires downstream separation and recycling to reduce consumables loss Batch process heating thermally inefficient.

  13. Total Synthesis of Ionic Liquid Systems for Dissolution of Lunar Simulant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharpe, Robert J.; Karr, Laurel J.; Paley, Mark S.

    2010-01-01

    For purposes of Space Resource Utilization, work in the total synthesis of a new ionic liquid system for the extraction of oxygen and metals from lunar soil is studied and described. Reactions were carried out according to procedures found in the chemical literature, analyzed via Thin-Layer Chromatography and 1H Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy and purified via vacuum distillation and rotary evaporation. Upon final analysis via 1H NMR, it was found that while the intermediates of the synthesis had been achieved, unexpected side products were also present. The mechanisms and constraints of the synthesis are described as well as the final results of the project and recommendations for continued study

  14. Photomosaics of the cathodoluminescence of 60 sections of meteorites and lunar samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akridge, D.G.; Akridge, J.M.C.; Batchelor, J.D.; Benoit, P.H.; Brewer, J.; DeHart, J.M.; Keck, B.D.; Jie, L.; Meier, A.; Penrose, M.; Schneider, D.M.; Sears, D.W.G.; Symes, S.J.K.; Yanhong, Z.

    2004-01-01

    Cathodoluminescence (CL) petrography provides a means of observing petrographic and compositional properties of geological samples not readily observable by other techniques. We report the low-magnification CL images of 60 sections of extraterrestrial materials. The images we report include ordinary chondrites (including type 3 ordinary chondrites and gas-rich regolith breccias), enstatite chondrites, CO chondrites and a CM chondrite, eucrites and a howardite, lunar highland regolith breccias, and lunar soils. The CL images show how primitive materials respond to parent body metamorphism, how the metamorphic history of EL chondrites differs from that of EH chondrites, how dark matrix and light clasts of regolith breccias relate to each other, how metamorphism affects eucrites, the texture of lunar regolith breccias and the distribution of crystallized lunar spherules ("lunar chondrules"), and how regolith working affects the mineral properties of lunar soils. More particularly, we argue that such images are a rich source of new information on the nature and history of these materials and that our efforts to date are a small fraction of what can be done. Copyright 2004 by the American Geophysical Union.

  15. Performance Testing of Molten Regolith Electrolysis with Transfer of Molten Material for the Production of Oxygen and Metals on the Moon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sibille, Laurent; Sadoway, Donald; Tripathy, Prabhat; Standish, Evan; Sirk, Aislinn; Melendez, Orlando; Stefanescu, Doru

    2010-01-01

    Previously, we have demonstrated the production of oxygen by electrolysis of molten regolith simulants at temperatures near 1600 C. Using an inert anode and suitable cathode, direct electrolysis (no supporting electrolyte) of the molten silicate is carried out, resulting in the production of molten metallic products at the cathode and oxygen gas at the anode. Initial direct measurements of current efficiency have confirmed that the process offer potential advantages of high oxygen production rates in a smaller footprint facility landed on the moon, with a minimum of consumables brought from Earth. We now report the results of a scale-up effort toward the goal of achieving production rates equivalent to 1 metric ton O2/year, a benchmark established for the support of a lunar base. We previously reported on the electrochemical behavior of the molten electrolyte as dependent on anode material, sweep rate and electrolyte composition in batches of 20-200g and at currents of less than 0.5 A. In this paper, we present the results of experiments performed at currents up to 10 Amperes) and in larger volumes of regolith simulant (500 g - 1 kg) for longer durations of electrolysis. The technical development of critical design components is described, including: inert anodes capable of passing continuous currents of several Amperes, container materials selection, direct gas analysis capability to determine the gas components co-evolving with oxygen. To allow a continuous process, a system has been designed and tested to enable the withdrawal of cathodically-reduced molten metals and spent molten oxide electrolyte. The performance of the withdrawal system is presented and critiqued. The design of the electrolytic cell and the configuration of the furnace were supported by modeling the thermal environment of the system in an effort to realize a balance between external heating and internal joule heating. We will discuss the impact these simulations and experimental findings have

  16. Mercury's Weather-Beaten Surface: Understanding Mercury in the Context of Lunar and Asteroidal Space Weathering Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domingue, Deborah L.; Chapman, Clark. R.; Killen, Rosemary M.; Zurbuchen, Thomas H.; Gilbert, Jason A.; Sarantos, Menelaos; Benna, Mehdi; Slavin, James A.; Schriver, David; Travnicek, Pavel M.; hide

    2014-01-01

    Mercury's regolith, derived from the crustal bedrock, has been altered by a set of space weathering processes. Before we can interpret crustal composition, it is necessary to understand the nature of these surface alterations. The processes that space weather the surface are the same as those that form Mercury's exosphere (micrometeoroid flux and solar wind interactions) and are moderated by the local space environment and the presence of a global magnetic field. To comprehend how space weathering acts on Mercury's regolith, an understanding is needed of how contributing processes act as an interactive system. As no direct information (e.g., from returned samples) is available about how the system of space weathering affects Mercury's regolith, we use as a basis for comparison the current understanding of these same processes on lunar and asteroidal regoliths as well as laboratory simulations. These comparisons suggest that Mercury's regolith is overturned more frequently (though the characteristic surface time for a grain is unknown even relative to the lunar case), more than an order of magnitude more melt and vapor per unit time and unit area is produced by impact processes than on the Moon (creating a higher glass content via grain coatings and agglutinates), the degree of surface irradiation is comparable to or greater than that on the Moon, and photon irradiation is up to an order of magnitude greater (creating amorphous grain rims, chemically reducing the upper layers of grains to produce nanometer scale particles of metallic iron, and depleting surface grains in volatile elements and alkali metals). The processes that chemically reduce the surface and produce nanometer-scale particles on Mercury are suggested to be more effective than similar processes on the Moon. Estimated abundances of nanometer-scale particles can account for Mercury's dark surface relative to that of the Moon without requiring macroscopic grains of opaque minerals. The presence of

  17. Novel Instrumentation for Lunar Regolith Oxygen Production Facilities, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — In this SBIR effort, Los Gatos Research (LGR) proposes to develop, test and deploy three novel compact, rugged and easy-to-use multi-gas analysis instruments, based...

  18. Lunar photometric modelling with SMART-1/AMIE imaging data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wilkman, O.; Muinonen, K.; Videen, G.; Josset, J.-L.; Souchon, A.

    2014-01-01

    We investigate the light-scattering properties of the lunar mare areas. A large photometric dataset was extracted from images taken by the AMIE camera on board the SMART-1 spacecraft. Inter-particle shadowing effects in the regolith are modelled using ray-tracing simulations, and then a phase function is fit to the data using Bayesian techniques and Markov chain Monte Carlo. Additionally, the data are fit with phase functions computed from radiative-transfer coherent-backscatter (RT-CB) simulations. The results indicate that the lunar photometry, including both the opposition effect and azimuthal effects, can be explained well with a combination of inter-particle shadowing and coherent backscattering. Our results produce loose constraints on the mare physical properties. The RT-CB results indicate that the scattering volume element is optically thick. In both the Bayesian analysis and the RT-CB fit, models with lower packing density and/or higher surface roughness always produce better fits to the data than densely packed, smoother ones

  19. Lunar Penetrating Radar onboard the Chang'e-3 mission

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fang Guang-You; Zhou Bin; Ji Yi-Cai; Zhang Qun-Ying; Shen Shao-Xiang; Li Yu-Xi; Guan Hong-Fei; Tang Chuan-Jun; Gao Yun-Ze; Lu Wei; Ye Sheng-Bo; Han Hai-Dong; Zheng Jin; Wang Shu-Zhi

    2014-01-01

    Lunar Penetrating Radar (LPR) is one of the important scientific instruments onboard the Chang'e-3 spacecraft. Its scientific goals are the mapping of lunar regolith and detection of subsurface geologic structures. This paper describes the goals of the mission, as well as the basic principles, design, composition and achievements of the LPR. Finally, experiments on a glacier and the lunar surface are analyzed

  20. Contour Crafting Simulation Plan for Lunar Settlement Infrastructure Build-Up

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khoshnevis, B.; Carlson, A.; Leach N.; Thangavelu, M.

    2016-01-01

    Economically viable and reliable building systems and tool sets are being sought, examined and tested for extraterrestrial infrastructure buildup. This project focused on a unique architecture weaving the robotic building construction technology with designs for assisting rapid buildup of initial operational capability Lunar and Martian bases. The project aimed to study new methodologies to construct certain crucial infrastructure elements in order to evaluate the merits, limitations and feasibility of adapting and using such technologies for extraterrestrial application. Current extraterrestrial settlement buildup philosophy holds that in order to minimize the materials needed to be flown in, at great transportation costs, strategies that maximize the use of locally available resources must be adopted. Tools and equipment flown as cargo from Earth are proposed to build required infrastructure to support future missions and settlements on the Moon and Mars.

  1. Preliminary Broadband Measurements of Dielectric Permittivity of Planetary Regolith Analog Materials Using a Coaxial Airline

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boivin, A.; Tsai, C. A.; Ghent, R. R.; Daly, M. G.

    2014-12-01

    When considering radar observations of airless bodies containing regolith, the radar backscatter coefficient is dependent upon the complex dielectric permittivity of the regolith materials. In many current applications of imaging radar data, uncertainty in the dielectric permittivity precludes quantitative estimates of such important parameters as regolith thickness and depth to buried features (e.g., lava flows on the Aristarchus Plateau on the Moon and the flows that surround the Quetzalpetlatl Corona on Venus). For asteroids, radar is an important tool for detecting and characterizing regoliths. Many previous measurements of the real and/or complex parts of the dielectric permittivity have been made, particularly for the Moon (on both Apollo samples and regolith analogues). However, no studies to date have systematically explored the relationship between permittivity and the various mineralogical components such as presence of FeO and TiO2. For lunar materials, the presence of the mineral ilmenite (FeTiO3), which contains equal portions FeO and TiO2, is thought to be the dominant factor controlling the loss tangent (tanδ, the ratio of the imaginary and real components of the dielectric permittivity). Ilmenite, however, is not the only mineral to contain iron in the lunar soil and our understanding of the effect of iron on the loss tangent is insufficient. Beyond the Moon, little is known about the effects on permittivity of carbonaceous materials. This is particularly relevant for missions to asteroids, such as the OSIRIS-REx mission to (101955) Bennu, a carbonaceous asteroid whose regolith composition is largely unknown. Here we present preliminary broadband (300 Mhz to 14 GHz) measurements on materials intended as planetary regolith analogs. Our ultimate goal is to establish a database of the effects of a wide range mineralogical components on dielectric permittivity, in support of the OSIRIS REx mission and ongoing Earth-based radar investigation of the Moon

  2. Characterising and modelling regolith stratigraphy using multiple geophysical techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, M.; Cremasco, D.; Fotheringham, T.; Hatch, M. A.; Triantifillis, J.; Wilford, J.

    2013-12-01

    Regolith is the weathered, typically mineral-rich layer from fresh bedrock to land surface. It encompasses soil (A, E and B horizons) that has undergone pedogenesis. Below is the weathered C horizon that retains at least some of the original rocky fabric and structure. At the base of this is the lower regolith boundary of continuous hard bedrock (the R horizon). Regolith may be absent, e.g. at rocky outcrops, or may be many 10's of metres deep. Comparatively little is known about regolith, and critical questions remain regarding composition and characteristics - especially deeper where the challenge of collecting reliable data increases with depth. In Australia research is underway to characterise and map regolith using consistent methods at scales ranging from local (e.g. hillslope) to continental scales. These efforts are driven by many research needs, including Critical Zone modelling and simulation. Pilot research in South Australia using digitally-based environmental correlation techniques modelled the depth to bedrock to 9 m for an upland area of 128 000 ha. One finding was the inability to reliably model local scale depth variations over horizontal distances of 2 - 3 m and vertical distances of 1 - 2 m. The need to better characterise variations in regolith to strengthen models at these fine scales was discussed. Addressing this need, we describe high intensity, ground-based multi-sensor geophysical profiling of three hillslope transects in different regolith-landscape settings to characterise fine resolution (i.e. a number of frequencies; multiple frequency, multiple coil electromagnetic induction; and high resolution resistivity. These were accompanied by georeferenced, closely spaced deep cores to 9 m - or to core refusal. The intact cores were sub-sampled to standard depths and analysed for regolith properties to compile core datasets consisting of: water content; texture; electrical conductivity; and weathered state. After preprocessing (filtering, geo

  3. The Strata-1 Regolith Dynamics Experiment: Class 1E Science on ISS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fries, Marc; Graham, Lee; John, Kristen

    2016-01-01

    The Strata-1 experiment studies the evolution of small body regolith through long-duration exposure of simulant materials to the microgravity environment on the International Space Station (ISS). This study will record segregation and mechanical dynamics of regolith simulants in a microgravity and vibration environment similar to that experienced by regolith on small Solar System bodies. Strata-1 will help us understand regolith dynamics and will inform design and procedures for landing and setting anchors, safely sampling and moving material on asteroidal surfaces, processing large volumes of material for in situ resource utilization (ISRU) purposes, and, in general, predicting the behavior of large and small particles on disturbed asteroid surfaces. This experiment is providing new insights into small body surface evolution.

  4. Evaluation of IEEE 802.11g and 802.16 for Lunar Surface Exploration Missions Using MACHETE Simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Segui, John; Jennings, Esther; Vyas, Hemali

    2009-01-01

    In this paper, we investigated the suitability of terrestrial wireless networking technologies for lunar surface exploration missions. Specifically, the scenario we considered consisted of two teams of collaborating astronauts, one base station and one rover, where the base station and the rover have the capability of acting as relays. We focused on the evaluation of IEEE 802.11g and IEEE 802.16 protocols, simulating homogeneous 802.11g network, homogeneous 802.16 network, and heterogeneous network using both 802.11g and 802.16. A mix of traffic flows were simulated, including telemetry, caution and warning, voice, command and file transfer. Each traffic type had its own distribution profile, data volume, and priority. We analyzed the loss and delay trade-offs of these wireless protocols with various link-layer options. We observed that 802.16 network managed the channel better than an 802.11g network due to controlled infrastructure and centralized scheduling. However, due to the centralized scheduling, 802.16 also had a longer delay. The heterogeneous (hybrid) of 802.11/802.16 achieved a better balance of performance in terms of data loss and delay compared to using 802.11 or 802.16 alone.

  5. Green Bank Lunar Interferometer for Neutrino Transients: GLINT

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Langston, Glen I. [NRAO, P.O. Box 2, Green Bank, WV 24944 (United States)], E-mail: glangsto@nrao.edu; Bradley, Rich [NRAO, 520 Edgemont Rd, Charlottesville, VA 22901 (United States); Hankins, Tim [New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, 801 Leroy Place, Socorro, NM 87801 (United States); Mutel, Bob [University of Iowa, 706 Van Allen Hall, Iowa City, IA 52242 (United States)

    2009-06-01

    The Green Bank Lunar Interferometer for Neutrino Transients (GLINT) project is a wide band (0.3-2.6 GHz) interferometric radio array dedicated to observations of transient events. The target is detection of few bright (>2000Jy) short duration (few nano-second) pulses from the lunar regolith. The GLINT project has three goals: (1) Maximize detection of statistically significant pulses originating from the lunar surface. (2) Unambiguously differentiate neutrino pulses from other sources of interference. (3) Localize the direction of the incoming radio pulse resulting from neutrino interactions.

  6. Detection Capability Evaluation on Chang'e-5 Lunar Mineralogical Spectrometer (LMS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Bin; Ren, Xin; Yan, Wei; Xu, Xuesen; Cai, Tingni; Liu, Dawei; Liu, Jianjun; Li, Chunlai

    2016-04-01

    The Chang'e-5 (CE-5) lunar sample return mission is scheduled to launch in 2017 to bring back lunar regolith and drill samples. The Chang'e-5 Lunar Mineralogical Spectrometer (LMS), as one of the three sets of scientific payload installed on the lander, is used to collect in-situ spectrum and analyze the mineralogical composition of the sampling site. It can also help to select the sampling site , and to compare the measured laboratory spectrum of returned sample with in-situ data. LMS employs acousto-optic tunable filters (AOTFs) and is composed of a VIS/NIR module (0.48μm-1.45μm) and an IR module (1.4μm -3.2μm). It has spectral resolution ranging from 3 to 25 nm, with a field of view (FOV) of 4.24°×4.24°. Unlike Chang'e-3 VIS/NIR Imaging Spectrometer (VNIS), the spectral coverage of LMS is extended from 2.4μm to 3.2μm, which has capability to identify H2O/OH absorption features around 2.7μm. An aluminum plate and an Infragold plate are fixed in the dust cover, being used as calibration targets in the VIS/NIR and IR spectral range respectively when the dust cover is open. Before launch, a ground verification test of LMS needs to be conducted in order to: 1) test and verify the detection capability of LMS through evaluation on the quality of image and spectral data collected for the simulated lunar samples; and 2) evaluate the accuracy of data processing methods by the simulation of instrument working on the moon. The ground verification test will be conducted both in the lab and field. The spectra of simulated lunar regolith/mineral samples will be collected simultaneously by the LMS and two calibrated spectrometers: a FTIR spectrometer (Model 102F) and an ASD FieldSpec 4 Hi-Res spectrometer. In this study, the results of the LMS ground verification test will be reported including the evaluation on the LMS spectral and image data quality, mineral identification and inversion ability, accuracy of calibration and geometric positioning .

  7. Iron signatures in Planetary Regoliths: The Moon as Case Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    McFadden, L. A.; Clark, P. E.; Basu, A.

    1998-09-01

    We consider the distribution of iron in the lunar crust by combining two complementary remote sensing techniques, Apollo Gamma-ray (AGR) spectroscopy and Clementine reflectance spectroscopy (CRS). Both maps were compared in areas of overlap controlled by Apollo 15 and 16 ground tracks. The CRS map was scaled to the same lower spatial resolution (200 km) as AGR using the same color map in a mercator projection. Both AGR and CRS maps show bimodal distributions of iron abundance and have large scale similarities, but there are quantitative and significant differences. Maria account for the high iron peak and highlands, the low iron peak. CSR-derived Fe has a greater overall range, very narrow modal peaks and greater separation between high and low modes compared to AGR Fe values. If both techniques measure total iron in the regolith then both approaches should agree, their residuals should be zero. After failure to explain the differences in a systematic manner, we recalibrated the CSR iron map to the iron abundance in the pyroxene component of Apollo landing site soils, an approach consistent with crystal field theory and the algorithm used to produce the CSR map. The difference between total iron measured by AGR and iron in pyroxene now measured by CSR gives a map of the non-pyroxene iron component of the lunar crust and its distribution. We now see a correlation with lunar morphology and an anti-correlation with age of mare basins and their iron abundance, the younger basins having a higher component of non-pyroxene iron than the older ones. These results can be checked with Lunar Prospector data on other areas of the Moon. Combining remote sensing data sets has promise for determining the distribution of iron in different oxidation states on Eros with data from the NEAR mission.

  8. The lunar thermal ice pump

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schorghofer, Norbert [Institute for Astronomy and NASA Astrobiology Institute, University of Hawaii, Honolulu, HI 96822 (United States); Aharonson, Oded, E-mail: norbert@hawaii.edu [Helen Kimmel Center for Planetary Science, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, 76100 (Israel)

    2014-06-20

    It has long been suggested that water ice can exist in extremely cold regions near the lunar poles, where sublimation loss is negligible. The geographic distribution of H-bearing regolith shows only a partial or ambiguous correlation with permanently shadowed areas, thus suggesting that another mechanism may contribute to locally enhancing water concentrations. We show that under suitable conditions, water molecules can be pumped down into the regolith by day-night temperature cycles, leading to an enrichment of H{sub 2}O in excess of the surface concentration. Ideal conditions for pumping are estimated and found to occur where the mean surface temperature is below 105 K and the peak surface temperature is above 120 K. These conditions complement those of the classical cold traps that are roughly defined by peak temperatures lower than 120 K. On the present-day Moon, an estimated 0.8% of the global surface area experiences such temperature variations. Typically, pumping occurs on pole-facing slopes in small areas, but within a few degrees of each pole the equator-facing slopes are preferred. Although pumping of water molecules is expected over cumulatively large areas, the absolute yield of this pump is low; at best, a few percent of the H{sub 2}O delivered to the surface could have accumulated in the near-surface layer in this way. The amount of ice increases with vapor diffusivity and is thus higher in the regolith with large pore spaces.

  9. Lunar horticulture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walkinshaw, C. H.

    1971-01-01

    Discussion of the role that lunar horticulture may fulfill in helping establish the life support system of an earth-independent lunar colony. Such a system is expected to be a hybrid between systems which depend on lunar horticulture and those which depend upon the chemical reclamation of metabolic waste and its resynthesis into nutrients and water. The feasibility of this approach has been established at several laboratories. Plants grow well under reduced pressures and with oxygen concentrations of less than 1% of the total pressure. The carbon dioxide collected from the lunar base personnel should provide sufficient gas pressure (approx. 100 mm Hg) for growing the plants.

  10. Lunar surface engineering properties experiment definition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, J. K.; Goodman, R. E.; Hurlbut, F. C.; Houston, W. N.; Willis, D. R.; Witherspoon, P. A.; Hovland, H. J.

    1971-01-01

    Research on the mechanics of lunar soils and on developing probes to determine the properties of lunar surface materials is summarized. The areas of investigation include the following: soil simulation, soil property determination using an impact penetrometer, soil stabilization using urethane foam or phenolic resin, effects of rolling boulders down lunar slopes, design of borehole jack and its use in determining failure mechanisms and properties of rocks, and development of a permeability probe for measuring fluid flow through porous lunar surface materials.

  11. Shallow lunar structure determined from the passive seismic experiment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nakamura, Y.; Dorman, J.; Duennebier, F.; Lammlein, D.; Latham, G.

    1975-01-01

    Data relevant to the shallow structure of the Moon obtained at the Apollo seismic stations are compared with previously published results of the active seismic experiments. It is concluded that the lunar surface is covered by a layer of low seismic velocity (Vsub(p) approximately equal to 100 ms -1 ), which appears to be equivalent to the lunar regolith defined previously by geological observations. This layer is underlain by a zone of distinctly higher seismic velocity at all of the Apollo landing sites. The regolith thicknesses at the Apollo 11, 12, and 15 sites are estimated from the shear-wave resonance to be 4.4, 3.7, and 4.4m, respectively. These thicknesses and those determined at the other Apollo sites by the active seismic experiments appear to be correlated with the age determinations and the abundances of extra-lunar components at the sites. (Auth.)

  12. Simulation for ground penetrating radar (GPR) study of the subsurface structure of the Moon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fa, Wenzhe

    2013-12-01

    Ground penetrating radar (GPR) is currently within the scope of China's Chang-E 3 lunar mission, to study the shallow subsurface of the Moon. In this study, key factors that could affect a lunar GPR performance, such as frequency, range resolution, and antenna directivity, are discussed firstly. Geometrical optics and ray tracing techniques are used to model GPR echoes, considering the transmission, attenuation, reflection, geometrical spreading of radar waves, and the antenna directivity. The influence on A-scope GPR echoes and on the simulated radargrams for the Sinus Iridum region by surface and subsurface roughness, dielectric loss of the lunar regolith, radar frequency and bandwidth, and the distance between the transmit and receive antennas are discussed. Finally, potential scientific return about lunar subsurface properties from GPR echoes is also discussed. Simulation results suggest that subsurface structure from several to hundreds of meters can be studied from GPR echoes at P and VHF bands, and information about dielectric permittivity and thickness of subsurface layers can be estimated from GPR echoes in combination with regolith composition data.

  13. Lunar Riometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lazio, J.; Jones, D. L.; MacDowall, R. J.; Burns, J. O.; Kasper, J. C.

    2011-12-01

    The lunar exosphere is the exemplar of a plasma near the surface of an airless body. Exposed to both the solar and interstellar radiation fields, the lunar exosphere is mostly ionized, and enduring questions regarding its properties include its density and vertical extent and its behavior over time, including modification by landers. Relative ionospheric measurements (riometry) are based on the simple physical principle that electromagnetic waves cannot propagate through a partially or fully ionized medium below the plasma frequency, and riometers have been deployed on the Earth in numerous remote and hostile environments. A multi-frequency riometer on the lunar surface would be able to monitor, in situ, the peak plasma density of the lunar exosphere over time. We describe a concept for a riometer implemented as a secondary science payload on future lunar landers, such as those recommended in the recent Planetary Sciences Decadal Survey report. While the prime mission of such a riometer would be probing the lunar exosphere, our concept would also be capable to measuring the properties of nanometer- to micron-scale dust. The LUNAR consortium is funded by the NASA Lunar Science Institute to investigate concepts for astrophysical observatories on the Moon. Part of this research was carried out at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under a contract with NASA.

  14. Human Estimation of Slope, Distance, and Height of Terrain in Simulated Lunar Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-02-01

    9643 APPENDIX J DEVON ISLAND DISTANCE REFERENCE 259 Distance References NBA Basketball Court Width 15 meters 50 feet...Cockpit Hours: Simulator Airframe: Hours: Sports Baseball Years: Beginner Intermediate Advanced Basketball Years: Beginner

  15. Lunar plant biology--a review of the Apollo era.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferl, Robert J; Paul, Anna-Lisa

    2010-04-01

    Recent plans for human return to the Moon have significantly elevated scientific interest in the lunar environment with emphasis on the science to be done in preparation for the return and while on the lunar surface. Since the return to the Moon is envisioned as a dedicated and potentially longer-term commitment to lunar exploration, questions of the lunar environment and particularly its impact on biology and biological systems have become a significant part of the lunar science discussion. Plants are integral to the discussion of biology on the Moon. Plants are envisioned as important components of advanced habitats and fundamental components of advanced life-support systems. Moreover, plants are sophisticated multicellular eukaryotic life-forms with highly orchestrated developmental processes, well-characterized signal transduction pathways, and exceedingly fine-tuned responses to their environments. Therefore, plants represent key test organisms for understanding the biological impact of the lunar environment on terrestrial life-forms. Indeed, plants were among the initial and primary organisms that were exposed to returned lunar regolith from the Apollo lunar missions. This review discusses the original experiments involving plants in association with the Apollo samples, with the intent of understanding those studies within the context of the first lunar exploration program and drawing from those experiments the data to inform the studies critical within the next lunar exploration science agenda.

  16. Lunar cement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agosto, William N.

    1992-01-01

    With the exception of water, the major oxide constituents of terrestrial cements are present at all nine lunar sites from which samples have been returned. However, with the exception of relatively rare cristobalite, the lunar oxides are not present as individual phases but are combined in silicates and in mixed oxides. Lime (CaO) is most abundant on the Moon in the plagioclase (CaAl2Si2O8) of highland anorthosites. It may be possible to enrich the lime content of anorthite to levels like those of Portland cement by pyrolyzing it with lunar-derived phosphate. The phosphate consumed in such a reaction can be regenerated by reacting the phosphorus product with lunar augite pyroxenes at elevated temperatures. Other possible sources of lunar phosphate and other oxides are discussed.

  17. Grain-Scale Supercharging and Breakdown on Airless Regoliths

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmerman, M. I.; Farrell, W. M.; Hartzell, C.M.; Wang, X.; Horanyi, M.; Hurley, D. M.; Hibbitts, K.

    2016-01-01

    Interactions of the solar wind and emitted photoelectrons with airless bodies have been studied extensively. However, the details of how charged particles interact with the regolith at the scale of a single grain have remained largely uncharacterized. Recent efforts have focused upon determining total surface charge under photoemission and solar wind bombardment and the associated electric field and potential. In this work, theory and simulations are used to show that grain-grain charge differences can exceed classical sheath predictions by several orders of magnitude, sometimes reaching dielectric breakdown levels. Temperature-dependent electrical conductivity works against supercharging by allowing current to leak through individual grains; the balance between internal conduction and surface charging controls the maximum possible grain-to-grain electric field. Understanding the finer details of regolith grain charging, conductive equilibrium, and dielectric breakdown will improve future numerical studies of space weathering and dust levitation on airless bodies.

  18. Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC) instrument overview

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, M.S.; Brylow, S.M.; Tschimmel, M.; Humm, D.; Lawrence, S.J.; Thomas, P.C.; Denevi, B.W.; Bowman-Cisneros, E.; Zerr, J.; Ravine, M.A.; Caplinger, M.A.; Ghaemi, F.T.; Schaffner, J.A.; Malin, M.C.; Mahanti, P.; Bartels, A.; Anderson, J.; Tran, T.N.; Eliason, E.M.; McEwen, A.S.; Turtle, E.; Jolliff, B.L.; Hiesinger, H.

    2010-01-01

    The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC) Wide Angle Camera (WAC) and Narrow Angle Cameras (NACs) are on the NASA Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO). The WAC is a 7-color push-frame camera (100 and 400 m/pixel visible and UV, respectively), while the two NACs are monochrome narrow-angle linescan imagers (0.5 m/pixel). The primary mission of LRO is to obtain measurements of the Moon that will enable future lunar human exploration. The overarching goals of the LROC investigation include landing site identification and certification, mapping of permanently polar shadowed and sunlit regions, meter-scale mapping of polar regions, global multispectral imaging, a global morphology base map, characterization of regolith properties, and determination of current impact hazards.

  19. Lunar Metal Oxide Electrolysis with Oxygen and Photovoltaic Array Production Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curreri, P. A.; Ethridge, E.; Hudson, S.; Sen, S.

    2006-01-01

    This paper presents the results of a Marshall Space Flight Center funded effort to conduct an experimental demonstration of the processing of simulated lunar resources by the molten oxide electrolysis (MOE) process to produce oxygen and metal from lunar resources to support human exploration of space. Oxygen extracted from lunar materials can be used for life support and propellant, and silicon and metallic elements produced can be used for in situ fabrication of thin-film solar cells for power production. The Moon is rich in mineral resources, but it is almost devoid of chemical reducing agents, therefore, molten oxide electrolysis, MOE, is chosen for extraction, since the electron is the most practical reducing agent. MOE was also chosen for following reasons. First, electrolytic processing offers uncommon versatility in its insensitivity to feedstock composition. Secondly, oxide melts boast the twin key attributes of highest solubilizing capacity for regolith and lowest volatility of any candidate electrolytes. The former is critical in ensuring high productivity since cell current is limited by reactant solubility, while the latter simplifies cell design by obviating the need for a gas-tight reactor to contain evaporation losses as would be the case with a gas or liquid phase fluoride reagent operating at such high temperatures. In the experiments reported here, melts containing iron oxide were electrolyzed in a low temperature supporting oxide electrolyte (developed by D. Sadoway, MIT). The production of oxygen and reduced iron were observed. Electrolysis was also performed on the supporting electrolyte with JSC-1 Lunar Simulant. The cell current for the supporting electrolyte alone is negligible while the current for the electrolyte with JSC-1 shows significant current and a peak at about -0.6 V indicating reductive reaction in the simulant.

  20. Low-Gravity Mimicking Simulants and Evaluation of Simulant Flow, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This project will provide a new method for testing flow/no-flow conditions and other gravity-driven flow behavior of Lunar or planetary regolith under reduced...

  1. Lunar magnetism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hood, L. L.; Sonett, C. P.; Srnka, L. J.

    1984-01-01

    Aspects of lunar paleomagnetic and electromagnetic sounding results which appear inconsistent with the hypothesis that an ancient core dynamo was the dominant source of the observed crustal magnetism are discussed. Evidence is summarized involving a correlation between observed magnetic anomalies and ejecta blankets from impact events which indicates the possible importance of local mechanisms involving meteoroid impact processes in generating strong magnetic fields at the lunar surface. A reply is given to the latter argument which also presents recent evidence of a lunar iron core.

  2. Integrated lunar materials manufacturing process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, Michael A. (Inventor); Knudsen, Christian W. (Inventor)

    1990-01-01

    A manufacturing plant and process for production of oxygen on the moon uses lunar minerals as feed and a minimum of earth-imported, process materials. Lunar feed stocks are hydrogen-reducible minerals, ilmenite and lunar agglutinates occurring in numerous, explored locations mixed with other minerals in the pulverized surface layer of lunar soil known as regolith. Ilmenite (FeTiO.sub.3) and agglutinates contain ferrous (Fe.sup.+2) iron reducible by hydrogen to yield H.sub.2 O and metallic Fe at about 700.degree.-1,200.degree. C. The H.sub.2 O is electrolyzed in gas phase to yield H.sub.2 for recycle and O.sub.2 for storage and use. Hydrogen losses to lunar vacuum are minimized, with no net hydrogen (or any other earth-derived reagent) consumption except for small leaks. Feed minerals are surface-mined by front shovels and transported in trucks to the processing area. The machines are manned or robotic. Ilmenite and agglutinates occur mixed with silicate minerals which are not hydrogen-reducible at 700.degree.-1,200.degree. C. and consequently are separated and concentrated before feeding to the oxygen generation process. Solids rejected from the separation step and reduced solids from the oxygen process are returned to the mine area. The plant is powered by nuclear or solar power generators. Vapor-phase water electrolysis, a staged, countercurrent, fluidized bed reduction reactor and a radio-frequency-driven ceramic gas heater are used to improve thermal efficiency.

  3. The Strata-l Experiment on Microgravity Regolith Segregation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fries, M.; Abell, P.; Brisset, J.; Britt, D.; Colwell, J.; Durda, D.; Dove, A.; Graham, L.; Hartzell, C.; John, K.; hide

    2016-01-01

    The Strata-1 experiment studies the segregation of small-body regolith through long-duration exposure of simulant materials to the microgravity environment on the International Space Station (ISS). Many asteroids feature low bulk densities, which implies high values of porosity and a mechanical structure composed of loosely bound particles, (i.e. the "rubble pile" model), a prime example of a granular medium. Even the higher-density, mechanically coherent asteroids feature a significant surface layer of loose regolith. These bodies will evolve in response to very small perturbations such as micrometeoroid impacts, planetary flybys, and the YORP effect. A detailed understanding of asteroid mechanical evolution is needed in order to predict the surface characteristics of as-of-yet unvisited bodies, to understand the larger context of samples from sample return missions, and to mitigate risks for both manned and unmanned missions to asteroidal bodies. Due to observation of rocky regions on asteorids such as Eros and Itokawa, it has been hypothesized that grain size distribution with depth on an asteroid may be inhomogeneous: specifically, that large boulders have been mobilized to the surface. In terrestrial environments, this size-dependent sorting to the surface of the sample is called the Brazil Nut Effect. The microgravity and acceleration environment on the ISS is similar that of a small asteroid. Thus, Strata-1 investigates size segregation of regolith in an environment analogous to that of small bodies. Strata-1 consists of four regolith simulants in evacuated tubes, as shown in Figure 1 (Top and Middle). The simulants are (1) a crushed and sieved ordinary chondrite meteorite to simulate an asteroidal surface, (2) a carbonaceous chondrite simulant with a mixture of fine and course particles, and two simplified silicate glass simulants; (3) one with angular and (4) another with spherical particles. These materials were chosen to span a range of granular

  4. Studies in matter antimatter separation and in the origin of lunar magnetism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barker, W. A.; Greeley, R.; Parkin, C.; Aggarwal, H.; Schultz, P.

    1975-01-01

    A progress report, covering lunar and planetary research is introduced. Data cover lunar ionospheric models, lunar and planetary geology, and lunar magnetism. Wind tunnel simulations of Mars aeolian problems and a comparative study of basaltic analogs of Lunar and Martial volcanic features was discussed.

  5. A thermal control system for long-term survival of scientific instruments on lunar surface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogawa, K; Iijima, Y; Sakatani, N; Otake, H; Tanaka, S

    2014-03-01

    A thermal control system is being developed for scientific instruments placed on the lunar surface. This thermal control system, Lunar Mission Survival Module (MSM), was designed for scientific instruments that are planned to be operated for over a year in the future Japanese lunar landing mission SELENE-2. For the long-term operations, the lunar surface is a severe environment because the soil (regolith) temperature varies widely from nighttime -200 degC to daytime 100 degC approximately in which space electronics can hardly survive. The MSM has a tent of multi-layered insulators and performs a "regolith mound". Temperature of internal devices is less variable just like in the lunar underground layers. The insulators retain heat in the regolith soil in the daylight, and it can keep the device warm in the night. We conducted the concept design of the lunar survival module, and estimated its potential by a thermal mathematical model on the assumption of using a lunar seismometer designed for SELENE-2. Thermal vacuum tests were also conducted by using a thermal evaluation model in order to estimate the validity of some thermal parameters assumed in the computed thermal model. The numerical and experimental results indicated a sufficient survivability potential of the concept of our thermal control system.

  6. A thermal control system for long-term survival of scientific instruments on lunar surface

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ogawa, K.; Iijima, Y.; Tanaka, S.; Sakatani, N.; Otake, H.

    2014-01-01

    A thermal control system is being developed for scientific instruments placed on the lunar surface. This thermal control system, Lunar Mission Survival Module (MSM), was designed for scientific instruments that are planned to be operated for over a year in the future Japanese lunar landing mission SELENE-2. For the long-term operations, the lunar surface is a severe environment because the soil (regolith) temperature varies widely from nighttime −200 degC to daytime 100 degC approximately in which space electronics can hardly survive. The MSM has a tent of multi-layered insulators and performs a “regolith mound”. Temperature of internal devices is less variable just like in the lunar underground layers. The insulators retain heat in the regolith soil in the daylight, and it can keep the device warm in the night. We conducted the concept design of the lunar survival module, and estimated its potential by a thermal mathematical model on the assumption of using a lunar seismometer designed for SELENE-2. Thermal vacuum tests were also conducted by using a thermal evaluation model in order to estimate the validity of some thermal parameters assumed in the computed thermal model. The numerical and experimental results indicated a sufficient survivability potential of the concept of our thermal control system

  7. A thermal control system for long-term survival of scientific instruments on lunar surface

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ogawa, K., E-mail: ogawa@astrobio.k.u-tokyo.ac.jp [Department of Complexity Science and Engineering, The University of Tokyo, 5-1-5 Kashiwanoha, Kashiwa, Chiba (Japan); Iijima, Y.; Tanaka, S. [Institute of Space and Astronautical Science, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, 3-1-1 Yoshinodai, Chuo, Sagamihara, Kanagawa (Japan); Sakatani, N. [The Graduate University for Advanced Studies, Shonan Village, Hayama, Kanagawa (Japan); Otake, H. [JAXA Space Exploration Center, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, 3-1-1 Yoshinodai, Chuo, Sagamihara, Kanagawa (Japan)

    2014-03-15

    A thermal control system is being developed for scientific instruments placed on the lunar surface. This thermal control system, Lunar Mission Survival Module (MSM), was designed for scientific instruments that are planned to be operated for over a year in the future Japanese lunar landing mission SELENE-2. For the long-term operations, the lunar surface is a severe environment because the soil (regolith) temperature varies widely from nighttime −200 degC to daytime 100 degC approximately in which space electronics can hardly survive. The MSM has a tent of multi-layered insulators and performs a “regolith mound”. Temperature of internal devices is less variable just like in the lunar underground layers. The insulators retain heat in the regolith soil in the daylight, and it can keep the device warm in the night. We conducted the concept design of the lunar survival module, and estimated its potential by a thermal mathematical model on the assumption of using a lunar seismometer designed for SELENE-2. Thermal vacuum tests were also conducted by using a thermal evaluation model in order to estimate the validity of some thermal parameters assumed in the computed thermal model. The numerical and experimental results indicated a sufficient survivability potential of the concept of our thermal control system.

  8. Mars Regolith Water Extractor, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Mars Regolith Water Extractor (MRWE) is a system for acquiring water from the Martian soil. In the MRWE, a stream of CO2 is heated by solar energy or waste heat...

  9. Elemental Mercury Diffusion Processes and Concentration at the Lunar Poles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moxley, Frederick; Killen, Rosemary M.; Hurley, Dana M.

    2011-01-01

    In 2009, the Lyman Alpha Mapping Project (LAMP) spectrograph onboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) spacecraft made the first detection of element mercury (Hg) vapor in the lunar exosphere after the Lunar Crater Observing and Sensing Satellite (LCROSS) Centaur rocket impacted into the Cabeus crater in the southern polar region of the Moon. The lunar regolith core samples from the Apollo missions determined that Hg had a devolatilized pattern with a concentration gradient increasing with depth, in addition to a layered pattern suggesting multiple episodes of burial and volatile loss. Hg migration on the lunar surface resulted in cold trapping at the poles. We have modeled the rate at which indigenous Hg is lost from the regolith through diffusion out of lunar grains. We secondly modeled the migration of Hg vapor in the exosphere and estimated the rate of cold-trapping at the poles using a Monte Carlo technique. The Hg vapor may be lost from the exosphere via ionization, Jeans escape, or re-impact into the surface causing reabsorption.

  10. Lunar Plants

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — We present an open design for a first plant growth module on the Moon (LPX). The primary science goal of lunar habitat is to investigate germination and initial...

  11. Lunar Flashlight

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Lunar Flashlight (LF) is an innovative cubesat mission sponsored by NASA’s Advanced Exploration Systems (AES) division to be launched on the Space Launch System...

  12. Apollo 16 regolith breccias and soils - Recorders of exotic component addition to the Descartes region of the moon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, S. B.; Papike, J. J.; Laul, J. C.; Hughes, S. S.; Schmitt, R. A.

    1988-01-01

    Using the subdivision of Apollo 16 regolith breccias into ancient (about 4 Gyr) and younger samples (McKay et al., 1986), with the present-day soils as a third sample, a petrologic and chemical determination of regolith evolution and exotic component addition at the A-16 site was performed. The modal petrologies and mineral and chemical compositions of the regolith breccias in the region are presented. It is shown that the early regolith was composed of fragments of plutonic rocks, impact melt rocks, and minerals and impact glasses. It is found that KREEP lithologies and impact melts formed early in lunar history. The mare components, mainly orange high-TiO2 glass and green low-TiO2 glass, were added to the site after formation of the ancient breccias and prior to the formation of young breccias. The major change in the regolith since the formation of the young breccias is an increase in maturity represented by the formation of fused soil particles with prolonged exposure to micrometeorite impacts.

  13. OH/H2O Detection Capability Evaluation on Chang'e-5 Lunar Mineralogical Spectrometer (LMS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Bin; Ren, Xin; Liu, Jianjun; Li, Chunlai; Mu, Lingli; Deng, Liyan

    2016-10-01

    The Chang'e-5 (CE-5) lunar sample return mission is scheduled to launch in 2017 to bring back lunar regolith and drill samples. The Chang'e-5 Lunar Mineralogical Spectrometer (LMS), as one of the three sets of scientific payload installed on the lander, is used to collect in-situ spectrum and analyze the mineralogical composition of the samplingsite. It can also help to select the sampling site, and to compare the measured laboratory spectrum of returned sample with in-situ data. LMS employs acousto-optic tunable filters (AOTFs) and is composed of a VIS/NIR module (0.48μm-1.45μm) and an IR module (1.4μm -3.2μm). It has spectral resolution ranging from 3 to 25 nm, with a field of view (FOV) of 4.24°×4.24°. Unlike Chang'e-3 VIS/NIR Imaging Spectrometer (VNIS), the spectral coverage of LMS is extended from 2.4μm to 3.2μm, which has capability to identify H2O/OH absorption features around 2.7μm. An aluminum plate and an Infragold plate are fixed in the dust cover, being used as calibration targets in the VIS/NIR and IR spectral range respectively when the dust cover is open. Before launch, a ground verification test of LMS needs to be conducted in order to: 1) test and verify the detection capability of LMS through evaluation on the quality of image and spectral data collected for the simulated lunar samples; and 2) evaluate the accuracy of data processing methods by the simulation of instrument working on the moon. The ground verification test will be conducted both in the lab and field. The spectra of simulated lunar regolith/mineral samples will be collected simultaneously by the LMS and two calibrated spectrometers: a FTIR spectrometer (Model 102F) and an ASD FieldSpec 4 Hi-Res spectrometer. In this study, the results of the LMS ground verification test will be reported, and OH/H2O Detection Capability will be evaluated especially.

  14. Low Temperature Regolith Bricks for In-Situ Structural Material

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grossman, Kevin; Sakthivel, Tamil S.; Mantovani, James; Seal, Sudipta

    2016-01-01

    Current technology for producing in-situ structural materials on future missions to Mars or the moon relies heavily on energy-intensive sintering processes to produce solid bricks from regolith. This process requires heating the material up to temperatures in excess of 1000 C and results in solid regolith pieces with compressive strengths in the range of 14000 to 28000 psi, but are heavily dependent on the porosity of the final material and are brittle. This method is currently preferred over a low temperature cementation process to prevent consumption of precious water and other non-renewable materials. A high strength structural material with low energy requirements is still needed for future colonization of other planets. To fulfill these requirements, a nano-functionalization process has been developed to produce structural bricks from regolith simulant and shows promising mechanical strength results. Functionalization of granular silicate particles into alkoxides using a simple low temperature chemical process produces a high surface area zeolite particles that are held together via inter-particle oxygen bonding. Addition of water in the resulting zeolite particles produces a sol-gel reaction called "inorganic polymerization" which gives a strong solid material after a curing process at 60 C. The aqueous solution by-product of the reaction is currently being investigated for its reusability; an essential component of any ISRU technology. For this study, two batches of regolith bricks are synthesized from JSC-1A; the first batch from fresh solvents and chemicals, the second batch made from the water solution by-product of the first batch. This is done to determine the feasibility of recycling necessary components of the synthesis process, mainly water. Characterization including BET surface area, SEM, and EDS has been done on the regolith bricks as well as the constituent particles,. The specific surface area of 17.53 sq m/g (average) of the granular regolith

  15. PowderSim: Lagrangian Discrete and Mesh-Free Continuum Simulation Code for Cohesive Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Scott; Walton, Otis; Settgast, Randolph

    2013-01-01

    PowderSim is a calculation tool that combines a discrete-element method (DEM) module, including calibrated interparticle-interaction relationships, with a mesh-free, continuum, SPH (smoothed-particle hydrodynamics) based module that utilizes enhanced, calibrated, constitutive models capable of mimicking both large deformations and the flow behavior of regolith simulants and lunar regolith under conditions anticipated during in situ resource utilization (ISRU) operations. The major innovation introduced in PowderSim is to use a mesh-free method (SPH-based) with a calibrated and slightly modified critical-state soil mechanics constitutive model to extend the ability of the simulation tool to also address full-scale engineering systems in the continuum sense. The PowderSim software maintains the ability to address particle-scale problems, like size segregation, in selected regions with a traditional DEM module, which has improved contact physics and electrostatic interaction models.

  16. Lunar base thermoelectric power station study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Determan, William; Frye, Patrick; Mondt, Jack; Fleurial, Jean-Pierre; Johnson, Ken; Stapfer, G.; Brooks, Michael D.; Heshmatpour, Ben

    2006-01-01

    Under NASA's Project Prometheus, the Nuclear Systems Program, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, and Teledyne Energy Systems have teamed with a number of universities, under the Segmented Thermoelectric Multicouple Converter (STMC) program, to develop the next generation of advanced thermoelectric converters for space reactor power systems. Work on the STMC converter assembly has progressed to the point where the lower temperature stage of the segmented multicouple converter assembly is ready for laboratory testing and the upper stage materials have been identified and their properties are being characterized. One aspect of the program involves mission application studies to help define the potential benefits from the use of these STMC technologies for designated NASA missions such as the lunar base power station where kilowatts of power are required to maintain a permanent manned presence on the surface of the moon. A modular 50 kWe thermoelectric power station concept was developed to address a specific set of requirements developed for this mission. Previous lunar lander concepts had proposed the use of lunar regolith as in-situ radiation shielding material for a reactor power station with a one kilometer exclusion zone radius to minimize astronaut radiation dose rate levels. In the present concept, we will examine the benefits and requirements for a hermetically-sealed reactor thermoelectric power station module suspended within a man-made lunar surface cavity. The concept appears to maximize the shielding capabilities of the lunar regolith while minimizing its handling requirements. Both thermal and nuclear radiation levels from operation of the station, at its 100-m exclusion zone radius, were evaluated and found to be acceptable. Site preparation activities are reviewed and well as transport issues for this concept. The goal of the study was to review the entire life cycle of the unit to assess its technical problems and technology

  17. Astronaut Neil Armstrong participates in lunar surface siumlation training

    Science.gov (United States)

    1969-01-01

    Suited Astronaut Neil A. Armstrong, wearing an Extravehicular Mobility Unit, participates in lunar surface simulation training on April 18, 1969, in bldg 9, Manned Spacecraft Center (MSC). Armstrong is the prime crew commander of the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission. Here, he simulates scooping up a lunar surface sample.

  18. Compact, Deep-Penetrating Geothermal Heat Flow Instrumentation for Lunar Landers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagihara, S.; Zacny, K.; Hedlund, M.; Taylor, P. T.

    2012-01-01

    Geothermal heat flow is obtained as a product of the two separate measurements of geothermal gradient in, and thermal conductivity of, the vertical soi/rock/regolith interval penetrated by the instrument. Heat flow measurements are a high priority for the geophysical network missions to the Moon recommended by the latest Decadal Survey [I] and previously the International Lunar Network [2]. The two lunar-landing missions planned later this decade by JAXA [3] and ESA [4] also consider geothermal measurements a priority.

  19. Lunar surface exploration using mobile robots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishida, Shin-Ichiro; Wakabayashi, Sachiko

    2012-06-01

    A lunar exploration architecture study is being carried out by space agencies. JAXA is carrying out research and development of a mobile robot (rover) to be deployed on the lunar surface for exploration and outpost construction. The main target areas for outpost construction and lunar exploration are mountainous zones. The moon's surface is covered by regolith. Achieving a steady traversal of such irregular terrain constitutes the major technical problem for rovers. A newly developed lightweight crawler mechanism can effectively traverse such irregular terrain because of its low contact force with the ground. This fact was determined on the basis of the mass and expected payload of the rover. This paper describes a plan for Japanese lunar surface exploration using mobile robots, and presents the results of testing and analysis needed in their development. This paper also gives an overview of the lunar exploration robot to be deployed in the SELENE follow-on mission, and the composition of its mobility, navigation, and control systems.

  20. Design of a lunar oxygen production plant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radhakrishnan, Ramalingam

    1990-01-01

    To achieve permanent human presence and activity on the moon, oxygen is required for both life support and propulsion. Lunar oxygen production using resources existing on the moon will reduce or eliminate the need to transport liquid oxygen from earth. In addition, the co-products of oxygen production will provide metals, structural ceramics, and other volatile compounds. This will enable development of even greater self-sufficiency as the lunar outpost evolves. Ilmenite is the most abundant metal-oxide mineral in the lunar regolith. A process involving the reaction of ilmenite with hydrogen at 1000 C to produce water, followed by the electrolysis of this water to provide oxygen and recycle the hydrogen has been explored. The objective of this 1990 Summer Faculty Project was to design a lunar oxygen-production plant to provide 5 metric tons of liquid oxygen per year from lunar soil. The results of this study describe the size and mass of the equipment, the power needs, feedstock quantity and the engineering details of the plant.

  1. Using Combustion Synthesis to Reinforce Berms and Other Regolith Structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriquez, Gary

    2013-01-01

    The Moonraker Excavator and other tools under development for use on the Moon, Mars, and asteroids will be employed to construct a number of civil engineering projects and to mine the soil. Mounds of loose soil will be subject to the local transport mechanisms plus artificial mechanisms such as blast effects from landers and erosion from surface vehicles. Some of these structures will require some permanence, with a minimum of maintenance and upkeep. Combustion Synthesis (CS) is a family of processes and techniques whereby chemistry is used to transform materials, often creating flame in a hard vacuum. CS can be used to stabilize civil engineering works such as berms, habitat shielding, ramps, pads, roadways, and the like. The method is to unroll thin sheets of CS fabric between layers of regolith and then fire the fabric, creating a continuous sheet of crusty material to be interposed among layers of loose regolith. The combination of low-energy processes, ISRU (in situ resource utilization) excavator, and CS fabrics, seems compelling as a general method for establishing structures of some permanence and utility, especially in the role of robotic missions as precursors to manned exploration and settlement. In robotic precursory missions, excavator/ mobility ensembles mine the Lunar surface, erect constructions of soil, and dispense sheets of CS fabrics that are covered with layers of soil, fired, and then again covered with layers of soil, iterating until the desired dimensions and forms are achieved. At the base of each berm, for example, is a shallow trench lined with CS fabric, fired and filled, mounded, and then covered and fired, iteratively to provide a footing against lateral shear. A larger trench is host to a habitat module, backfilled, covered with fabric, covered with soil, and fired. Covering the applied CS fabric with layers of soil before firing allows the resulting matrix to incorporate soil both above and below the fabric ply into the fused layer

  2. Simulation of the «COSMONAUT-ROBOT» System Interaction on the Lunar Surface Based on Methods of Machine Vision and Computer Graphics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kryuchkov, B. I.; Usov, V. M.; Chertopolokhov, V. A.; Ronzhin, A. L.; Karpov, A. A.

    2017-05-01

    Extravehicular activity (EVA) on the lunar surface, necessary for the future exploration of the Moon, involves extensive use of robots. One of the factors of safe EVA is a proper interaction between cosmonauts and robots in extreme environments. This requires a simple and natural man-machine interface, e.g. multimodal contactless interface based on recognition of gestures and cosmonaut's poses. When travelling in the "Follow Me" mode (master/slave), a robot uses onboard tools for tracking cosmonaut's position and movements, and on the basis of these data builds its itinerary. The interaction in the system "cosmonaut-robot" on the lunar surface is significantly different from that on the Earth surface. For example, a man, dressed in a space suit, has limited fine motor skills. In addition, EVA is quite tiring for the cosmonauts, and a tired human being less accurately performs movements and often makes mistakes. All this leads to new requirements for the convenient use of the man-machine interface designed for EVA. To improve the reliability and stability of human-robot communication it is necessary to provide options for duplicating commands at the task stages and gesture recognition. New tools and techniques for space missions must be examined at the first stage of works in laboratory conditions, and then in field tests (proof tests at the site of application). The article analyzes the methods of detection and tracking of movements and gesture recognition of the cosmonaut during EVA, which can be used for the design of human-machine interface. A scenario for testing these methods by constructing a virtual environment simulating EVA on the lunar surface is proposed. Simulation involves environment visualization and modeling of the use of the "vision" of the robot to track a moving cosmonaut dressed in a spacesuit.

  3. Performance of Regolith Feed Systems for Analog Field Tests of In-Situ Resource Utilization Oxygen Production Plants in Mauna Kea, Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Townsend, Ivan I.; Mueller, Robert P.; Mantovani, James G.; Zacny, Kris A.; Craft, Jack

    2010-01-01

    This paper focuses on practical aspects of mechanical auger and pneumatic regolith conveying system feeding In-Situ Resource Utilization Oxygen production plants. The subsystems of these feedstock delivery systems include an enclosed auger device, pneumatic venturi educator, jet-lift regolith transfer, innovative electro-cyclone gas-particle separation/filtration systems, and compressors capable of dealing with hot hydrogen and/or methane gas re-circulating in the system. Lessons learned from terrestrial laboratory, reduced gravity and field testing on Mauna Kea Volcano in Hawaii during NASA lunar analog field tests will be discussed and practical design tips will be presented.

  4. Advanced Additive Manufacturing Feedstock from Molten Regolith Electrolysis

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Demonstrate the feasibility of Molten Regolith Electrolysis (MRE) Reactor start by initiating resistive-heating of the regolith past its melting point using...

  5. Discussion of thermal extraction chamber concepts for Lunar ISRU

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfeiffer, Matthias; Hager, Philipp; Parzinger, Stephan; Dirlich, Thomas; Spinnler, Markus; Sattelmayer, Thomas; Walter, Ulrich

    The Exploration group of the Institute of Astronautics (LRT) of the Technische Universitüt a München focuses on long-term scenarios and sustainable human presence in space. One of the enabling technologies in this long-term perspective is in-situ resource utilization (ISRU). When dealing with the prospect of future manned missions to Moon and Mars the use of ISRU seems useful and intended. The activities presented in this paper focus on Lunar ISRU. This basically incorporates both the exploitation of Lunar oxygen from natural rock and the extraction of solar wind implanted particles (SWIP) from regolith dust. Presently the group at the LRT is examining possibilities for the extraction of SWIPs, which may provide several gaseous components (such as H2 and N2) valuable to a human presence on the Moon. As a major stepping stone in the near future a Lunar demonstrator/ verification experiment payload is being designed. This experiment, LUISE (LUnar ISru Experiment), will comprise a thermal process chamber for heating regolith dust (grain size below 500m), a solar thermal power supply, a sample distribution unit and a trace gas analysis. The first project stage includes the detailed design and analysis of the extraction chamber concepts and the thermal process involved in the removal of SWIP from Lunar Regolith dust. The technique of extracting Solar Wind volatiles from Regolith has been outlined by several sources. Heating the material to a threshold value seems to be the most reasonable approach. The present paper will give an overview over concepts for thermal extraction chambers to be used in the LUISE project and evaluate in detail the pros and cons of each concept. The special boundary conditions set by solar thermal heating of the chambers as well as the material properties of Regolith in a Lunar environment will be discussed. Both greatly influence the design of the extraction chamber. The performance of the chamber concepts is discussed with respect to the

  6. Technic and economic viability study on exploitation of lunar 3He resource

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Deng Baiquan

    1995-01-01

    From the energetics point of view, the technic and economic viability study on exploitation of lunar 3 He for fuelling the fusion reactor burning D- 3 He has been carried out. This study is divided into the following sections: analysis of solar wind parameters and estimation of potential quantity 3 He in the lunar regolith, the cost evaluation of mining He of lunar soil; the energy cost calculation of He extraction by vacuum heating degassing during lunar day, the cost calculation of cryogenic isotopic separation 3 He/ 4 He during the lunar night, the energy cost for earth/moon transportation of liquid 3 He, the energy payback calculation of fusion power burning 3 He based lunar source, and finally the comparison of the energy multiplication with that for 235 U production of nuclear fuel and for coal mining. The comparisons of cost of electricity between D- 3 He and D-T fuel cycle for different reactor types have been discussed

  7. Measurements in Vacuum of the Complex Permittivity of Planetary Regolith Analog Materials in Support of the OSIRIS-REx Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boivin, A.; Hickson, D. C.; Cunje, A.; Tsai, C. A.; Ghent, R. R.; Daly, M. G.

    2017-12-01

    In preparation for the OSIRIS-REx sample return mission, ground based radar data have been used to help characterize the carbonaceous asteroid (101955) Bennu as well as to produce a 3-D shape model. Radar data have also been used to derive the near-surface bulk density of the asteroid, a key engineering factor for sample acquisition and return. The relationship between radar albedo and bulk density of the nearsurface depends on the relative permittivity of the material, in this case regolith. The relative permittivity is complex such that ɛ r = ɛ r' + i ɛ r'', where ɛ r' is the dielectric constant and ɛ r'' is the loss factor. Laboratory permittivity measurements have been made in the past on a myriad of samples including Earth materials, lunar Apollo and analog samples, Mars soil analog samples, some meteorites, and cometary analog samples in support of the Rosetta mission. These measurements have been made in different frequency bands and in various conditions; however, no measurements to date have systematically explored the effect of changes in mineralogy on the complex permittivity, and particularly the loss tangent (tanδ , the ratio of ɛ r'' to ɛ r'). The loss tangent controls the absorption of the signal by the material. Continuing our investigation of the effects of mineralogy on these properties, we will present for the first time results of complex permittivity measurements of the UCF/DSI-CI-2 CI asteroid regolith simulant produced by Deep Space Industries Inc. The simulant is mineralogically similar to the CI meteorite Orgueil. CI meteorites are the most spectrally similar meteorites to (101955) Bennu. Since the simulant has been provided to us un-mixed, several sub-samples will be created containing different amounts of carbon, thus allowing us to systematically investigate the effects of carbon content on the permittivity. In order to remove moisture from our samples, powders are baked at 250°C for 48hrs prior to being loaded into a coaxial

  8. NASA Lunar Base Wireless System Propagation Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwu, Shian U.; Upanavage, Matthew; Sham, Catherine C.

    2007-01-01

    There have been many radio wave propagation studies using both experimental and theoretical techniques over the recent years. However, most of studies have been in support of commercial cellular phone wireless applications. The signal frequencies are mostly at the commercial cellular and Personal Communications Service bands. The antenna configurations are mostly one on a high tower and one near the ground to simulate communications between a cellular base station and a mobile unit. There are great interests in wireless communication and sensor systems for NASA lunar missions because of the emerging importance of establishing permanent lunar human exploration bases. Because of the specific lunar terrain geometries and RF frequencies of interest to the NASA missions, much of the published literature for the commercial cellular and PCS bands of 900 and 1800 MHz may not be directly applicable to the lunar base wireless system and environment. There are various communication and sensor configurations required to support all elements of a lunar base. For example, the communications between astronauts, between astronauts and the lunar vehicles, between lunar vehicles and satellites on the lunar orbits. There are also various wireless sensor systems among scientific, experimental sensors and data collection ground stations. This presentation illustrates the propagation analysis of the lunar wireless communication and sensor systems taking into account the three dimensional terrain multipath effects. It is observed that the propagation characteristics are significantly affected by the presence of the lunar terrain. The obtained results indicate the lunar surface material, terrain geometry and antenna location are the important factors affecting the propagation characteristics of the lunar wireless systems. The path loss can be much more severe than the free space propagation and is greatly affected by the antenna height, surface material and operating frequency. The

  9. Geochemistry and petrography of the MacAlpine Hills lunar meteorites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindstrom, Marilyn M.; Mckay, David S.; Wentworth, Susan J.; Martinez, Rene R.; Mittlefehldt, David W.; Wang, Ming-Sheng; Lipschutz, Michael E.

    1991-01-01

    MacAlpine Hills 88104 and 88105, anorthositic lunar meteorites recovered form the same area in Antartica, are characterized. Petrographic studies show that MAC88104/5 is a polymict breccia dominated by impact melt clasts. It is better classified as a fragmental breccia than a regolith breccia. The bulk composition is ferroan and highly aluminous (Al2O3-28 percent).

  10. Direct detection of projectile relics from the end of the lunar basin-forming epoch.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joy, Katherine H; Zolensky, Michael E; Nagashima, Kazuhide; Huss, Gary R; Ross, D Kent; McKay, David S; Kring, David A

    2012-06-15

    The lunar surface, a key proxy for the early Earth, contains relics of asteroids and comets that have pummeled terrestrial planetary surfaces. Surviving fragments of projectiles in the lunar regolith provide a direct measure of the types and thus the sources of exogenous material delivered to the Earth-Moon system. In ancient [>3.4 billion years ago (Ga)] regolith breccias from the Apollo 16 landing site, we located mineral and lithologic relics of magnesian chondrules from chondritic impactors. These ancient impactor fragments are not nearly as diverse as those found in younger (3.4 Ga to today) regolith breccias and soils from the Moon or that presently fall as meteorites to Earth. This suggests that primitive chondritic asteroids, originating from a similar source region, were common Earth-Moon-crossing impactors during the latter stages of the basin-forming epoch.

  11. Remanent magnetization stratigraphy of lunar cores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerjee, S. K.; Gingrich, D.; Marvin, J. A.

    1977-01-01

    Depth dependent fluctuations have been observed in the natural remanent magnetizations (NRM) of drive cores and drill strings from Apollo 16 and 17 missions. Partial demagnetization of unstable secondary magnetizations and identification of characteristic error signals from a core which is known to have been recently disturbed allow us to identify and isolate the stable NRM stratigraphy in double drive core 60010/60009 and drill strings 60002-60004. The observed magnetization fluctuations persist after normalization to take into account depth dependent variations in the carriers of stable NRM. We tentatively ascribe the stable NRM stratigraphy to instantaneous records of past magnetic fields at the lunar surface and suggest that the stable NRM stratigraphy technique could develop as a new relative time-stratigraphic tool, to be used with other physical measurements such as relative intensity of ferromagnetic resonance and charged particle track density to study the evolution of the lunar regolith.

  12. Remote Assessment of Lunar Resource Potential

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, G. Jeffrey

    1992-01-01

    Assessing the resource potential of the lunar surface requires a well-planned program to determine the chemical and mineralogical composition of the Moon's surface at a range of scales. The exploration program must include remote sensing measurements (from both Earth's surface and lunar orbit), robotic in situ analysis of specific places, and eventually, human field work by trained geologists. Remote sensing data is discussed. Resource assessment requires some idea of what resources will be needed. Studies thus far have concentrated on oxygen and hydrogen production for propellant and life support, He-3 for export as fuel for nuclear fusion reactors, and use of bulk regolith for shielding and construction materials. The measurement requirements for assessing these resources are given and discussed briefly.

  13. Luna 24 regolith breccias: A possible source of the fine size material of the Luna 24 regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rode, O. D.; Lindstrom, M. M.

    1994-01-01

    The regolith breccias from the Luna 24 core were analyzed. The Luna 24 regolith is a mixture of fine and coarse grain materials. The comparable analysis of the grain size distributions, the modal and chemical compositions of the breccias, and the regolith from the same levels show that the friable slightly litificated breccia with a friable fine grain matrix may be a source of fine grain material of the Luna 24 present day regolith.

  14. Development of Additive Construction Technologies for Application to Development of Lunar/Martian Surface Structures Using In-Situ Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werkheiser, Niki J.; Fiske, Michael R.; Edmunson, Jennifer E.; Khoshnevis, Berokh

    2015-01-01

    construction elements using lunar regolith simulant and Mars regolith simulant, both with various binder materials. Future planned activities will be discussed as well.

  15. Martian regolith geochemistry and sampling techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, B. C.

    Laboratory study of samples of the intermediate and fine-grained regolith, including duricrust peds, is a fundamental prerequisite for understanding the types of physical and chemical weathering processes on Mars. The extraordinary importance of such samples is their relevance to understanding past changes in climate, availability (and possible physical state) of water, eolian forces, the thermal and chemical influences of volcanic and impact processes, and the inventory and fates of Martian volatiles. Fortunately, this regolith material appears to be ubiquitous over the Martian surface, and should be available at many different landing sites. Viking data has been interpreted to indicate a smectite-rich regolith material, implying extensive weathering involving aqueous activity and geochemical alteration. An all-igneous source of the Martian fines has also been proposed. The X-ray fluorescence measurement data set can now be fully explained in terms of a simple two-component model. The first component is silicate, having strong geochemical similarities with Shergottites, but not other SNC meteorites. The second component is salt. Variations in these components could produce silicate and salt-rich beds, the latter being of high potential importance for microenvironments in which liquid water (brines) could exist. It therefore would be desirable to scan the surface of the regolith for such prospects.

  16. Martian regolith geochemistry and sampling techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, B. C.

    1988-01-01

    Laboratory study of samples of the intermediate and fine-grained regolith, including duricrust peds, is a fundamental prerequisite for understanding the types of physical and chemical weathering processes on Mars. The extraordinary importance of such samples is their relevance to understanding past changes in climate, availability (and possible physical state) of water, eolian forces, the thermal and chemical influences of volcanic and impact processes, and the inventory and fates of Martian volatiles. Fortunately, this regolith material appears to be ubiquitous over the Martian surface, and should be available at many different landing sites. Viking data has been interpreted to indicate a smectite-rich regolith material, implying extensive weathering involving aqueous activity and geochemical alteration. An all-igneous source of the Martian fines has also been proposed. The X-ray fluorescence measurement data set can now be fully explained in terms of a simple two-component model. The first component is silicate, having strong geochemical similarities with Shergottites, but not other SNC meteorites. The second component is salt. Variations in these components could produce silicate and salt-rich beds, the latter being of high potential importance for microenvironments in which liquid water (brines) could exist. It therefore would be desirable to scan the surface of the regolith for such prospects.

  17. Lunar soil as shielding against space radiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Miller, J. [Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, MS 83R0101, 1 Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, CA 94720 (United States)], E-mail: miller@lbl.gov; Taylor, L. [Planetary Geosciences Institute, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996 (United States); Zeitlin, C. [Southwest Research Institute, Boulder, CO 80302 (United States); Heilbronn, L. [Department of Nuclear Engineering, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996 (United States); Guetersloh, S. [Department of Nuclear Engineering, Texas A and M University, College Station, TX 77843 (United States); DiGiuseppe, M. [Northrop Grumman Corporation, Bethpage, NY 11714 (United States); Iwata, Y.; Murakami, T. [National Institute of Radiological Sciences, Chiba 263-8555 (Japan)

    2009-02-15

    We have measured the radiation transport and dose reduction properties of lunar soil with respect to selected heavy ion beams with charges and energies comparable to some components of the galactic cosmic radiation (GCR), using soil samples returned by the Apollo missions and several types of synthetic soil glasses and lunar soil simulants. The suitability for shielding studies of synthetic soil and soil simulants as surrogates for lunar soil was established, and the energy deposition as a function of depth for a particular heavy ion beam passing through a new type of lunar highland simulant was measured. A fragmentation and energy loss model was used to extend the results over a range of heavy ion charges and energies, including protons at solar particle event (SPE) energies. The measurements and model calculations indicate that a modest amount of lunar soil affords substantial protection against primary GCR nuclei and SPE, with only modest residual dose from surviving charged fragments of the heavy beams.

  18. Bagging system, soil stabilization mat, and tent frame for a lunar base

    Science.gov (United States)

    1990-01-01

    Georgia Tech's School of Textile and Fiber Engineering and School of Mechanical Engineering participated in four cooperative design efforts this year. Each of two interdisciplinary teams designed a system consisting of a lunar regolith bag and an apparatus for filling this bag. The third group designed a mat for stabilization of lunar soil during takeoff and landing, and a method for packaging and deploying this mat. Finally, the fourth group designed a sunlight diffusing tent to be used as a lunar worksite. Summaries of these projects are given.

  19. Potential Use of In Situ Material Composites such as Regolith/Polyethylene for Shielding Space Radiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theriot, Corey A.; Gersey, Buddy; Bacon, Eugene; Johnson, Quincy; Zhang, Ye; Norman, Jullian; Foley, Ijette; Wilkins, Rick; Zhou, Jianren; Wu, Honglu

    2010-01-01

    NASA has an extensive program for studying materials and methods for the shielding of astronauts to reduce the effects of space radiation when on the surfaces of the Moon and Mars, especially in the use of in situ materials native to the destination reducing the expense of materials transport. The most studied material from the Moon is Lunar regolith and has been shown to be as efficient as aluminum for shielding purposes (1). The addition of hydrogenous materials such as polyethylene should increase shielding effectiveness and provide mechanical properties necessary of structural materials (2). The neutron radiation shielding effectiveness of polyethylene/regolith stimulant (JSC-1A) composites were studied using confluent human fibroblast cell cultures exposed to a beam of high-energy spallation neutrons at the 30deg-left beam line (ICE house) at the Los Alamos Neutron Science Center. At this angle, the radiation spectrum mimics the energy spectrum of secondary neutrons generated in the upper atmosphere and encountered when aboard spacecraft and high-altitude aircraft. Cell samples were exposed in series either directly to the neutron beam, within a habitat created using regolith composite blocks, or behind 25 g/sq cm of loose regolith bulk material. In another experiment, cells were also exposed in series directly to the neutron beam in T-25 flasks completely filled with either media or water up to a depth of 20 cm to test shielding effectiveness versus depth and investigate the possible influence of secondary particle generation. All samples were sent directly back to JSC for sub-culturing and micronucleus analysis. This presentation is of work performed in collaboration with the NASA sponsored Center for Radiation Engineering and Science for Space Exploration (CRESSE) at Prairie View A&M.

  20. Ferromagnetic resonance studies of lunar core stratigraphy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Housley, R. M.; Cirlin, E. H.; Goldberg, I. B.; Crowe, H.

    1976-01-01

    We first review the evidence which links the characteristic ferromagnetic resonance observed in lunar fines samples with agglutinatic glass produced primarily by micrometeorite impacts and present new results on Apollo 15, 16, and 17 breccias which support this link by showing that only regolith breccias contribute significantly to the characteristic FMR intensity. We then provide a calibration of the amount of Fe metal in the form of uniformly magnetized spheres required to give our observed FMR intensities and discuss the theoretical magnetic behavior to be expected of Fe spheres as a function of size. Finally, we present FMR results on samples from every 5 mm interval in the core segments 60003, 60009, and 70009. These results lead us to suggest: (1) that secondary mixing may generally be extensive during regolith deposition so that buried regolith surfaces are hard to recognize or define; and (2) that local grinding of rocks and pebbles during deposition may lead to short scale fluctuations in grain size, composition, and apparent exposure age of samples.

  1. Lunar Health Monitor (LHM)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lisy, Frederick J.

    2015-01-01

    Orbital Research, Inc., has developed a low-profile, wearable sensor suite for monitoring astronaut health in both intravehicular and extravehicular activities. The Lunar Health Monitor measures respiration, body temperature, electrocardiogram (EKG) heart rate, and other cardiac functions. Orbital Research's dry recording electrode is central to the innovation and can be incorporated into garments, eliminating the need for conductive pastes, adhesives, or gels. The patented dry recording electrode has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The LHM is easily worn under flight gear or with civilian clothing, making the system completely versatile for applications where continuous physiological monitoring is needed. During Phase II, Orbital Research developed a second-generation LHM that allows sensor customization for specific monitoring applications and anatomical constraints. Evaluations included graded exercise tests, lunar mission task simulations, functional battery tests, and resting measures. The LHM represents the successful integration of sensors into a wearable platform to capture long-duration and ambulatory physiological markers.

  2. Solar Energy Systems for Lunar Oxygen Generation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colozza, Anthony J.; Heller, Richard S.; Wong, Wayne A.; Hepp, Aloysius F.

    2010-01-01

    An evaluation of several solar concentrator-based systems for producing oxygen from lunar regolith was performed. The systems utilize a solar concentrator mirror to provide thermal energy for the oxygen production process. Thermal energy to power a Stirling heat engine and photovoltaics are compared for the production of electricity. The electricity produced is utilized to operate the equipment needed in the oxygen production process. The initial oxygen production method utilized in the analysis is hydrogen reduction of ilmenite. Utilizing this method of oxygen production a baseline system design was produced. This baseline system had an oxygen production rate of 0.6 kg/hr with a concentrator mirror size of 5 m. Variations were performed on the baseline design to show how changes in the system size and process (rate) affected the oxygen production rate. An evaluation of the power requirements for a carbothermal lunar regolith reduction reactor has also been conducted. The reactor had a total power requirement between 8,320 to 9,961 W when producing 1000 kg/year of oxygen. The solar concentrator used to provide the thermal power (over 82 percent of the total energy requirement) would have a diameter of less than 4 m.

  3. Lunar remote sensing and measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, H.J.; Boyce, J.M.; Schaber, G.G.; Scott, D.H.

    1980-01-01

    , and the lunar dipole field was revised to no more than 6x 10 19 gauss. High-resolution mapping of fields of weak remanent magnetism (to 0.1 gamma) was made possible by the Apollo plasma and energetic-particle experiment. Although the causes of remanent magnetism are poorly understood, correlations with geologic units suggest the results may ultimately have farreaching significance to lunar history. Maria are much less structured by strong surface magnetic anomalies than the highlands. The strongest anomalies are associated with ejecta of farside basins, plains materials filling pre-Imbrian craters, and other old Imbrian to pre-Imbrian units. The high remanent fields could be due to cooling of ejecta units in an ancient magnetic field, lunar regolith maturity, extensive reworking and disruption of a magnetized layer, or simply surface roughness. Orbital geochemical experiments have shown that lunar high lands have larger Al: Si ratios and smaller Mg: Si ratios than maria. These two ratios are inversely related on a regional basis. With the exception of fresh craters, albedo and Al : Si ratios vary directly, showing that compositional differences as well as exposure of fresh materials are responsible for high albedos. Statistically treated data show that geologic contacts and compositional boundaries are concentric and can be roughly matched. Some craters on mare material have penetrated the mare fill, bringing highland-type materials to the surface. Natural radioactivity from thorium, potassium, and uranium is inversely correlated with elevation. Mare regions are enriched in iron, titanium, and magnesium relative to the highlands. Orbital bistatic-radar results provide estimates of surface roughness at two scale lengths (about 30 m and 250 m), which agree with visual estimates of roughness. The dielectric constant of the lunar surface, where sampled, is uniform to 13-cm radar and near 3. Slope frequency distributions measured by the radar vary and

  4. Lunar Navigation Architecture Design Considerations

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Souza, Christopher; Getchius, Joel; Holt, Greg; Moreau, Michael

    2009-01-01

    The NASA Constellation Program is aiming to establish a long-term presence on the lunar surface. The Constellation elements (Orion, Altair, Earth Departure Stage, and Ares launch vehicles) will require a lunar navigation architecture for navigation state updates during lunar-class missions. Orion in particular has baselined earth-based ground direct tracking as the primary source for much of its absolute navigation needs. However, due to the uncertainty in the lunar navigation architecture, the Orion program has had to make certain assumptions on the capabilities of such architectures in order to adequately scale the vehicle design trade space. The following paper outlines lunar navigation requirements, the Orion program assumptions, and the impacts of these assumptions to the lunar navigation architecture design. The selection of potential sites was based upon geometric baselines, logistical feasibility, redundancy, and abort support capability. Simulated navigation covariances mapped to entry interface flightpath- angle uncertainties were used to evaluate knowledge errors. A minimum ground station architecture was identified consisting of Goldstone, Madrid, Canberra, Santiago, Hartebeeshoek, Dongora, Hawaii, Guam, and Ascension Island (or the geometric equivalent).

  5. Data processing and initial results of Chang'e-3 lunar penetrating radar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Yan; Fang, Guang-You; Feng, Jian-Qing; Xing, Shu-Guo; Ji, Yi-Cai; Zhou, Bin; Gao, Yun-Ze; Li, Han; Dai, Shun; Xiao, Yuan; Li, Chun-Lai

    2014-12-01

    To improve our understanding of the formation and evolution of the Moon, one of the payloads onboard the Chang'e-3 (CE-3) rover is Lunar Penetrating Radar (LPR). This investigation is the first attempt to explore the lunar subsurface structure by using ground penetrating radar with high resolution. We have probed the subsurface to a depth of several hundred meters using LPR. In-orbit testing, data processing and the preliminary results are presented. These observations have revealed the configuration of regolith where the thickness of regolith varies from about 4 m to 6 m. In addition, one layer of lunar rock, which is about 330 m deep and might have been accumulated during the depositional hiatus of mare basalts, was detected.

  6. Data processing and initial results of Chang'e-3 lunar penetrating radar

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Su Yan; Feng Jian-Qing; Xing Shu-Guo; Li Han; Dai Shun; Xiao Yuan; Li Chun-Lai; Fang Guang-You; Ji Yi-Cai; Zhou Bin; Gao Yun-Ze

    2014-01-01

    To improve our understanding of the formation and evolution of the Moon, one of the payloads onboard the Chang'e-3 (CE-3) rover is Lunar Penetrating Radar (LPR). This investigation is the first attempt to explore the lunar subsurface structure by using ground penetrating radar with high resolution. We have probed the subsurface to a depth of several hundred meters using LPR. In-orbit testing, data processing and the preliminary results are presented. These observations have revealed the configuration of regolith where the thickness of regolith varies from about 4 m to 6 m. In addition, one layer of lunar rock, which is about 330 m deep and might have been accumulated during the depositional hiatus of mare basalts, was detected

  7. Evolution and Transport of Water in the Upper Regolith of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hudson, T. L.; Aharonson, O.; Schorghofer, N.; Hecht, M. H.; Bridges, N. T.; Green, J. R.

    2003-01-01

    Long standing theoretical predictions [1-3], as well as recent spacecraft observations [4] indicate that large quantities of ice is present in the high latitudes upper decimeters to meters of the Martian regolith. At shallower depths and warmer locations small amounts of H2O, either adsorbed or free, may be present transiently. An understanding of the evolution of water based on theoretical and experimental considerations of the processes operating at the Martian environment is required. In particular, the porosity, diffusivity, and permeability of soils and their effect on water vapor transport under Mars-like conditions have been estimated, but experimental validation of such models is lacking. Goal: Three related mechanisms may affect water transport in the upper Martian regolith. 1) diffusion along a concentration gradient under isobaric conditions, 2) diffusion along a thermal gradient, which may give rise to a concentration gradient as ice sublimes or molecules desorb from the regolith, and 3) hydraulic flow, or mass motion in response to a pressure gradient. Our combined theoretical and experimental investigation seeks to disentangle these mechanisms and determine which process(es) are dominant in the upper regolith over various timescales. A detailed one-dimensional model of the upper regolith is being created which incorporates water adsorption/ desorption, condensation, porosity, diffusivity, and permeability effects. Certain factors such as diffusivity are difficult to determine theoretically due to the wide range of intrinsic grain properties such as particle sizes, shapes, packing densities, and emergent properties such as tortuosity. An experiment is being designed which will allow us to more accurately determine diffusivity, permeability, and water desorption isotherms for regolith simulants.

  8. Analysis of Solar-Heated Thermal Wadis to Support Extended-Duration Lunar Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balasubramaniam, R.; Wegeng, R. S.; Gokoglu, S. A.; Suzuki, N. H.; Sacksteder, K. R.

    2010-01-01

    The realization of the renewed exploration of the Moon presents many technical challenges; among them is the survival of lunar surface assets during periods of darkness when the lunar environment is very cold. Thermal wadis are engineered sources of stored solar energy using modified lunar regolith as a thermal storage mass that can enable the operation of lightweight robotic rovers or other assets in cold, dark environments without incurring potential mass, cost, and risk penalties associated with various onboard sources of thermal energy. Thermal wadi-assisted lunar rovers can conduct a variety of long-duration missions including exploration site surveys; teleoperated, crew-directed, or autonomous scientific expeditions; and logistics support for crewed exploration. This paper describes a thermal analysis of thermal wadi performance based on the known solar illumination of the moon and estimates of producible thermal properties of modified lunar regolith. Analysis was performed for the lunar equatorial region and for a potential Outpost location near the lunar south pole. The results are presented in some detail in the paper and indicate that thermal wadis can provide the desired thermal energy reserve, with significant margin, for the survival of rovers or other equipment during periods of darkness.

  9. Joule-Heated Molten Regolith Electrolysis Reactor Concepts for Oxygen and Metals Production on the Moon and Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sibille, Laurent; Dominguez, Jesus A.

    2012-01-01

    The technology of direct electrolysis of molten lunar regolith to produce oxygen and molten metal alloys has progressed greatly in the last few years. The development of long-lasting inert anodes and cathode designs as well as techniques for the removal of molten products from the reactor has been demonstrated. The containment of chemically aggressive oxide and metal melts is very difficult at the operating temperatures ca. 1600 C. Containing the molten oxides in a regolith shell can solve this technical issue and can be achieved by designing a Joule-heated (sometimes called 'self-heating') reactor in which the electrolytic currents generate enough Joule heat to create a molten bath. Solutions obtained by multiphysics modeling allow the identification of the critical dimensions of concept reactors.

  10. The ESA Lunar Lander and the search for Lunar Volatiles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morse, A. D.; Barber, S. J.; Pillinger, J. M.; Sheridan, S.; Wright, I. P.; Gibson, E. K.; Merrifield, J. A.; Waltham, N. R.; Waugh, L. J.; Pillinger, C. T.

    2011-10-01

    Following the Apollo era the moon was considered a volatile poor body. Samples collected from the Apollo missions contained only ppm levels of water formed by the interaction of the solar wind with the lunar regolith [1]. However more recent orbiter observations have indicated that water may exist as water ice in cold polar regions buried within craters at concentrations of a few wt. % [2]. Infrared images from M3 on Chandrayaan-1 have been interpreted as showing the presence of hydrated surface minerals with the ongoing hydroxyl/water process feeding cold polar traps. This has been supported by observation of ephemeral features termed "space dew" [3]. Meanwhile laboratory studies indicate that water could be present in appreciable quantities in lunar rocks [4] and could also have a cometary source [5]. The presence of sufficient quantities of volatiles could provide a resource which would simplify logistics for long term lunar missions. The European Space Agency (ESA's Directorate of Human Spaceflight and Operations) have provisionally scheduled a robotic mission to demonstrate key technologies to enable later human exploration. Planned for launch in 2018, the primary aim is for precise automated landing, with hazard avoidance, in zones which are almost constantly illuminated (e.g. at the edge of the Shackleton crater at the lunar south pole). These regions would enable the solar powered Lander to survive for long periods > 6 months, but require accurate navigation to within 200m. Although landing in an illuminated area, these regions are close to permanently shadowed volatile rich regions and the analysis of volatiles is a major science objective of the mission. The straw man payload includes provision for a Lunar Volatile and Resources Analysis Package (LVRAP). The authors have been commissioned by ESA to conduct an evaluation of possible technologies to be included in L-VRAP which can be included within the Lander payload. Scientific aims are to demonstrate the

  11. An Extension of Analysis of Solar-Heated Thermal Wadis to Support Extended-Duration Lunar Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balasubramaniam, R.; Gokoglu, S. A.; Sacksteder, K. R.; Wegeng, R. S.; Suzuki, N. H.

    2010-01-01

    The realization of the renewed exploration of the Moon presents many technical challenges; among them is the survival of lunar surface assets during periods of darkness when the lunar environment is very cold. Thermal wadis are engineered sources of stored solar energy using modified lunar regolith as a thermal storage mass that can supply energy to protect lightweight robotic rovers or other assets during the lunar night. This paper describes an extension of an earlier analysis of performance of thermal wadis based on the known solar illumination of the Moon and estimates of producible thermal properties of modified lunar regolith. The current analysis has been performed for the lunar equatorial region and validates the formerly used 1-D model by comparison of predictions to those obtained from 2-D and 3-D computations. It includes the effects of a thin dust layer covering the surface of the wadi, and incorporating either water as a phase-change material or aluminum stakes as a high thermal conductivity material into the regolith. The calculations indicate that thermal wadis can provide the desired thermal energy and temperature control for the survival of rovers or other equipment during periods of darkness.

  12. BRDF of Salt Pan Regolith Samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Georgiev, Georgi T.; Gatebe, Charles K.; Butler, James J.; King, Michael D.

    2008-01-01

    Laboratory Bi-directional Reflectance Distribution Function (BRDF) measurements of salt pan regolith samples are presented in this study in an effort to understand the role of spatial and spectral variability of the natural biome. The samples were obtained from Etosha Pan, Namibia (19.20 deg S, 15.93 deg E, alt. 1100 m). It is shown how the BRDF depends on the measurement geometry - incident and scatter angles and on the sample particle sizes. As a demonstration of the application of the results, airborne BRDF measurements acquires with NASA's Cloud Absorption Radiometer (CAR) over the same general site where the regolith samples were collected are compared with the laboratory results. Good agreement between laboratory measured and field measured BRDF is reported.

  13. First lunar outpost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andino, Aureo F.; Silva, Daniel; Ortiz, Nelson; Alvarez, Omar; Colon, Julio A.; Colon, Myrelle; Diaz, Alicia; Escobar, Xochiquetzal Y.; Garcia, Alberto; Gonzalez, Isabel C.

    1992-01-01

    Design and research efforts at the University of Puerto Rico have focused on the evaluation and refinement of the Habitability Criteria for a prolonged human presence in space during the last four years. Living quarters for a Mars mission and a third generation lunar base concept were proposed. This academic year, 1991-92, work on further refinement of the habitability criteria and design of partial gravity furniture was carried on. During the first semester, design alternatives for furniture necessary in a habitat design optimized for lunar and Martian environments were developed. Designs are based on recent research data from lunar and Mars gravity simulations, and current NASA standards. Artifacts will be submitted to NASA architects to be tested in KC-135 flights. Test findings will be submitted for incorporation in future updates to NASA habitat design standards. Second semester work was aimed at integrating these findings into the First Lunar Outpost (FLO), a mission scenario currently being considered by NASA. The mission consists of a manned return to the moon by crews of four astronauts for periods of 45 days. The major hardware components of the mission are as follows: (1) a Crew Module for the delivery of the crew and their supplies, and (2) the Habitat Module, which will arrive on the Moon unmanned. Our design efforts concentrated on this Habitat Module and on application of habitability criteria. Different geometries for the pressure vessel and their impact on the interior architecture were studied. Upon the selection of a geometry, a more detailed analysis of the interior design was performed, taking into consideration the reduced gravity, and the protection against radiation, micrometeorites, and the extreme temperature variation. A proposal for a FLO was submitted by the students, consisting essentially of a 24-feet (7.3 m.) by 35-feet (10.67 m) high vertical cylinder with work areas, crew quarters, galley, wardroom, leisure facilities, health

  14. Optimal Lunar Landing Trajectory Design for Hybrid Engine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dong-Hyun Cho

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The lunar landing stage is usually divided into two parts: deorbit burn and powered descent phases. The optimal lunar landing problem is likely to be transformed to the trajectory design problem on the powered descent phase by using continuous thrusters. The optimal lunar landing trajectories in general have variety in shape, and the lunar lander frequently increases its altitude at the initial time to obtain enough time to reduce the horizontal velocity. Due to the increment in the altitude, the lunar lander requires more fuel for lunar landing missions. In this work, a hybrid engine for the lunar landing mission is introduced, and an optimal lunar landing strategy for the hybrid engine is suggested. For this approach, it is assumed that the lunar lander retrofired the impulsive thruster to reduce the horizontal velocity rapidly at the initiated time on the powered descent phase. Then, the lunar lander reduced the total velocity and altitude for the lunar landing by using the continuous thruster. In contradistinction to other formal optimal lunar landing problems, the initial horizontal velocity and mass are not fixed at the start time. The initial free optimal control theory is applied, and the optimal initial value and lunar landing trajectory are obtained by simulation studies.

  15. RASSOR - Regolith Advanced Surface Systems Operations Robot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gill, Tracy R.; Mueller, Rob

    2015-01-01

    The Regolith Advanced Surface Systems Operations Robot (RASSOR) is a lightweight excavator for mining in reduced gravity. RASSOR addresses the need for a lightweight (robot that is able to overcome excavation reaction forces while operating in reduced gravity environments such as the moon or Mars. A nominal mission would send RASSOR to the moon to operate for five years delivering regolith feedstock to a separate chemical plant, which extracts oxygen from the regolith using H2 reduction methods. RASSOR would make 35 trips of 20 kg loads every 24 hours. With four RASSORs operating at one time, the mission would achieve 10 tonnes of oxygen per year (8 t for rocket propellant and 2 t for life support). Accessing craters in space environments may be extremely hard and harsh due to volatile resources - survival is challenging. New technologies and methods are required. RASSOR is a product of KSC Swamp Works which establishes rapid, innovative and cost effective exploration mission solutions by leveraging partnerships across NASA, industry and academia.

  16. Population characteristics of submicrometer-sized craters on regolith particles from asteroid Itokawa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsumoto, Toru; Hasegawa, S.; Nakao, S.; Sakai, M.; Yurimoto, H.

    2018-03-01

    We investigated impact crater structures on regolith particles from asteroid Itokawa using scanning electron microscopy. We observed the surfaces of 51 Itokawa particles, ranging from 15 μm to 240 μm in size. Craters with average diameters ranging from 10 nm to 2.8 μm were identified on 13 Itokawa particles larger than 80 μm. We examined the abundance, spatial distribution, and morphology of approximately 900 craters on six Itokawa particles. Craters with sizes in excess of 200 nm are widely dispersed, with spatial densities from 2.6 μm2 to 4.5 μm2; a fraction of the craters was locally concentrated with a density of 0.1 μm2. The fractal dimension of the cumulative crater diameters ranges from 1.3 to 2.3. Craters of several tens of nanometers in diameter exhibit pit and surrounding rim structures. Craters of more than 100 nm in diameter commonly have melted residue at their bottom. These morphologies are similar to those of submicrometer-sized craters on lunar regolith. We estimated the impactor flux on Itokawa regolith-forming craters, assuming that the craters were accumulated during direct exposure to the space environment for 102 to 104 yr. The range of impactor flux onto Itokawa particles is estimated to be at least one order of magnitude higher than the interplanetary dust flux and comparable to the secondary impact flux on the Moon. This indicates that secondary ejecta impacts are probably the dominant cratering process in the submicrometer range on Itokawa regolith particles, as well as on the lunar surface. We demonstrate that secondary submicrometer craters can be produced anywhere in centimeter- to meter-sized depressions on Itokawa's surface through primary interplanetary dust impacts. If the surface unevenness on centimeter to meter scales is a significant factor determining the abundance of submicrometer secondary cratering, the secondary impact flux could be independent of the overall shapes or sizes of celestial bodies, and the secondary

  17. Photometric Lunar Surface Reconstruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nefian, Ara V.; Alexandrov, Oleg; Morattlo, Zachary; Kim, Taemin; Beyer, Ross A.

    2013-01-01

    Accurate photometric reconstruction of the Lunar surface is important in the context of upcoming NASA robotic missions to the Moon and in giving a more accurate understanding of the Lunar soil composition. This paper describes a novel approach for joint estimation of Lunar albedo, camera exposure time, and photometric parameters that utilizes an accurate Lunar-Lambertian reflectance model and previously derived Lunar topography of the area visualized during the Apollo missions. The method introduced here is used in creating the largest Lunar albedo map (16% of the Lunar surface) at the resolution of 10 meters/pixel.

  18. Analytical, Experimental, and Modelling Studies of Lunar and Terrestrial Rocks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haskin, Larry A.

    1997-01-01

    The goal of our research has been to understand the paths and the processes of planetary evolution that produced planetary surface materials as we find them. Most of our work has been on lunar materials and processes. We have done studies that obtain geological knowledge from detailed examination of regolith materials and we have reported implications for future sample-collecting and on-surface robotic sensing missions. Our approach has been to study a suite of materials that we have chosen in order to answer specific geologic questions. We continue this work under NAG5-4172. The foundation of our work has been the study of materials with precise chemical and petrographic analyses, emphasizing analysis for trace chemical elements. We have used quantitative models as tests to account for the chemical compositions and mineralogical properties of the materials in terms of regolith processes and igneous processes. We have done experiments as needed to provide values for geochemical parameters used in the models. Our models take explicitly into account the physical as well as the chemical processes that produced or modified the materials. Our approach to planetary geoscience owes much to our experience in terrestrial geoscience, where samples can be collected in field context and sampling sites revisited if necessary. Through studies of terrestrial analog materials, we have tested our ideas about the origins of lunar materials. We have been mainly concerned with the materials of the lunar highland regolith, their properties, their modes of origin, their provenance, and how to extrapolate from their characteristics to learn about the origin and evolution of the Moon's early igneous crust. From this work a modified model for the Moon's structure and evolution is emerging, one of globally asymmetric differentiation of the crust and mantle to produce a crust consisting mainly of ferroan and magnesian igneous rocks containing on average 70-80% plagioclase, with a large

  19. Instrumented Moles for Planetary Subsurface Regolith Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richter, L. O.; Coste, P. A.; Grzesik, A.; Knollenberg, J.; Magnani, P.; Nadalini, R.; Re, E.; Romstedt, J.; Sohl, F.; Spohn, T.

    2006-12-01

    Soil-like materials, or regolith, on solar system objects provide a record of physical and/or chemical weathering processes on the object in question and as such possess significant scientific relevance for study by landed planetary missions. In the case of Mars, a complex interplay has been at work between impact gardening, aeolian as well as possibly fluvial processes. This resulted in regolith that is texturally as well as compositionally layered as hinted at by results from the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) missions which are capable of accessing shallow subsurface soils by wheel trenching. Significant subsurface soil access on Mars, i.e. to depths of a meter or more, remains to be accomplished on future missions. This has been one of the objectives of the unsuccessful Beagle 2 landed element of the ESA Mars Express mission having been equipped with the Planetary Underground Tool (PLUTO) subsurface soil sampling Mole system capable of self-penetration into regolith due to an internal electro-mechanical hammering mechanism. This lightweight device of less than 900 g mass was designed to repeatedly obtain and deliver to the lander regolith samples from depths down to 2 m which would have been analysed for organic matter and, specifically, organic carbon from potential extinct microbial activity. With funding from the ESA technology programme, an evolved Mole system - the Instrumented Mole System (IMS) - has now been developed to a readiness level of TRL 6. The IMS is to serve as a carrier for in situ instruments for measurements in planetary subsurface soils. This could complement or even eliminate the need to recover samples to the surface. The Engineering Model hardware having been developed within this effort is designed for accommodating a geophysical instrument package (Heat Flow and Physical Properties Package, HP3) that would be capable of measuring regolith physical properties and planetary heat flow. The chosen design encompasses a two-body Mole

  20. Feasibility of lunar Helium-3 mining

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinschneider, Andreas; Van Overstraeten, Dmitry; Van der Reijnst, Roy; Van Hoorn, Niels; Lamers, Marvin; Hubert, Laurent; Dijk, Bert; Blangé, Joey; Hogeveen, Joel; De Boer, Lennaert; Noomen, Ron

    With fossil fuels running out and global energy demand increasing, the need for alternative energy sources is apparent. Nuclear fusion using Helium-3 may be a solution. Helium-3 is a rare isotope on Earth, but it is abundant on the Moon. Throughout the space community lunar Helium-3 is often cited as a major reason to return to the Moon. Despite the potential of lunar Helium-3 mining, little research has been conducted on a full end-to-end mission. This abstract presents the results of a feasibility study conducted by students from Delft University of Technology. The goal of the study was to assess whether a continuous end-to-end mission to mine Helium-3 on the Moon and return it to Earth is a viable option for the future energy market. The set requirements for the representative end-to-end mission were to provide 10% of the global energy demand in the year 2040. The mission elements have been selected with multiple trade-offs among both conservative and novel concepts. A mission architecture with multiple decoupled elements for each transportation segment (LEO, transfer, lunar surface) was found to be the best option. It was found that the most critical element is the lunar mining operation itself. To supply 10% of the global energy demand in 2040, 200 tons of Helium-3 would be required per year. The resulting regolith mining rate would be 630 tons per second, based on an optimistic concentration of 20 ppb Helium-3 in lunar regolith. Between 1,700 to 2,000 Helium-3 mining vehicles would be required, if using University of Wisconsin’s Mark III miner. The required heating power, if mining both day and night, would add up to 39 GW. The resulting power system mass for the lunar operations would be in the order of 60,000 to 200,000 tons. A fleet of three lunar ascent/descent vehicles and 22 continuous-thrust vehicles for orbit transfer would be required. The costs of the mission elements have been spread out over expected lifetimes. The resulting profits from Helium

  1. Simulation and Characterization of a Miniaturized Scanning Electron Microscope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaskin, Jessica A.; Jerman, Gregory A.; Medley, Stephanie; Gregory, Don; Abbott, Terry O.; Sampson, Allen R.

    2011-01-01

    A miniaturized Scanning Electron Microscope (mSEM) for in-situ lunar investigations is being developed at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center with colleagues from the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH), Advanced Research Systems (ARS), the University of Tennessee in Knoxville (UTK) and Case Western Reserve University (CWRU). This effort focuses on the characterization of individual components of the mSEM and simulation of the complete system. SEMs can provide information on the size, shape, morphology and chemical composition of lunar regolith. Understanding these basic properties will allow us to better estimate the challenges associated with In-Situ Resource Utilization and to improve our basic science knowledge of the lunar surface (either precluding the need for sample return or allowing differentiation of unique samples to be returned to Earth.) The main components of the mSEM prototype includes: a cold field emission electron gun (CFEG), focusing lens, deflection/scanning system and backscatter electron detector. Of these, the electron gun development is of particular importance as it dictates much of the design of the remaining components. A CFEG was chosen for use with the lunar mSEM as its emission does not depend on heating of the tungsten emitter (lower power), it offers a long operation lifetime, is orders of magnitude brighter than tungsten hairpin guns, has a small source size and exhibits low beam energy spread.

  2. Mission control team structure and operational lessons learned from the 2009 and 2010 NASA desert RATS simulated lunar exploration field tests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, Ernest R.; Badillo, Victor; Coan, David; Johnson, Kieth; Ney, Zane; Rosenbaum, Megan; Smart, Tifanie; Stone, Jeffry; Stueber, Ronald; Welsh, Daren; Guirgis, Peggy; Looper, Chris; McDaniel, Randall

    2013-10-01

    The NASA Desert Research and Technology Studies (Desert RATS) is an annual field test of advanced concepts, prototype hardware, and potential modes of operation to be used on human planetary surface space exploration missions. For the 2009 and 2010 NASA Desert RATS field tests, various engineering concepts and operational exercises were incorporated into mission timelines with the focus of the majority of daily operations being on simulated lunar geological field operations and executed in a manner similar to current Space Shuttle and International Space Station missions. The field test for 2009 involved a two week lunar exploration simulation utilizing a two-man rover. The 2010 Desert RATS field test took this two week simulation further by incorporating a second two-man rover working in tandem with the 2009 rover, as well as including docked operations with a Pressurized Excursion Module (PEM). Personnel for the field test included the crew, a mission management team, engineering teams, a science team, and the mission operations team. The mission operations team served as the core of the Desert RATS mission control team and included certified NASA Mission Operations Directorate (MOD) flight controllers, former flight controllers, and astronaut personnel. The backgrounds of the flight controllers were in the areas of Extravehicular Activity (EVA), onboard mechanical systems and maintenance, robotics, timeline planning (OpsPlan), and spacecraft communicator (Capcom). With the simulated EVA operations, mechanized operations (the rover), and expectations of replanning, these flight control disciplines were especially well suited for the execution of the 2009 and 2010 Desert RATS field tests. The inclusion of an operations team has provided the added benefit of giving NASA mission operations flight control personnel the opportunity to begin examining operational mission control techniques, team compositions, and mission scenarios. This also gave the mission operations

  3. Studies in matter antimatter separation and in the origin of lunar magnetism. Annual progress report, 1 Sep 1974--31 Aug 1975

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barker, W.A.; Greeley, R.; Parkin, C.; Aggarwal, H.; Schultz, P.

    1975-01-01

    A progress report covering lunar and planetary research is introduced. Data cover lunar ionospheric models, lunar and planetary geology, and lunar magnetism. Wind tunnel simulations of Mars aeolian problems and a comparative study of basaltic analogs of Lunar and Martial volcanic features was discussed

  4. When did the lunar core dynamo cease?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tikoo, S. M.; Weiss, B. P.; Shuster, D. L.; Fuller, M.

    2013-12-01

    Remanent magnetization in the lunar crust and in returned Apollo samples has long suggested that the Moon formed a metallic core and an ancient dynamo magnetic field. Recent paleomagnetic investigations of lunar samples demonstrate that the Moon had a core dynamo which produced ~30-110 μT surface fields between at least 4.2 and 3.56 billion years ago (Ga). Tikoo et al. (1) recently found that the field declined to below several μT by 3.19 Ga. However, given that even values of a few μT are at the upper end of the intensities predicted by dynamo theory for this late in lunar history, it remains uncertain when the lunar dynamo actually ceased completely. Determining this requires a young lunar rock with extraordinarily high magnetic recording fidelity. With this goal, we are conducting a new analysis of young regolith breccia 15498. Although the breccia's age is currently uncertain, the presence of Apollo 15-type mare basalt clasts provides an upper limit constraint of ~3.3 Ga, while trapped Ar data suggest a lithification age of ~1.3 Ga. In stark contrast to the multidomain character of virtually all lunar crystalline rocks, the magnetic carriers in 15498 are on average pseudo-single domain to superparamagnetic, indicating that the sample should provide high-fidelity paleointensity records. A previous alternating field (AF) and thermal demagnetization study of 15498 by Gose et al. (2) observed that the sample carries stable remanent magnetization which persists to unblocking temperatures of at least 650°C. Using a modified Thellier technique, they reported a paleointensity of 2 μT. Although this value may have been influenced by spurious remanence acquired during pretreatment with AF demagnetization, our results confirm the presence of an extremely stable (blocked to coercivities >290 mT) magnetization in the glassy matrix. We also found that this magnetization is largely unidirectional across mutually oriented subsamples. The cooling timescale of this rock (~1

  5. Volcanic history of the Imbrium basin: A close-up view from the lunar rover Yutu.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jinhai; Yang, Wei; Hu, Sen; Lin, Yangting; Fang, Guangyou; Li, Chunlai; Peng, Wenxi; Zhu, Sanyuan; He, Zhiping; Zhou, Bin; Lin, Hongyu; Yang, Jianfeng; Liu, Enhai; Xu, Yuchen; Wang, Jianyu; Yao, Zhenxing; Zou, Yongliao; Yan, Jun; Ouyang, Ziyuan

    2015-04-28

    We report the surface exploration by the lunar rover Yutu that landed on the young lava flow in the northeastern part of the Mare Imbrium, which is the largest basin on the nearside of the Moon and is filled with several basalt units estimated to date from 3.5 to 2.0 Ga. The onboard lunar penetrating radar conducted a 114-m-long profile, which measured a thickness of ∼5 m of the lunar regolith layer and detected three underlying basalt units at depths of 195, 215, and 345 m. The radar measurements suggest underestimation of the global lunar regolith thickness by other methods and reveal a vast volume of the last volcano eruption. The in situ spectral reflectance and elemental analysis of the lunar soil at the landing site suggest that the young basalt could be derived from an ilmenite-rich mantle reservoir and then assimilated by 10-20% of the last residual melt of the lunar magma ocean.

  6. Searching for Lunar Horizon Glow With the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barker, M. K.; Mazarico, E. M.; McClanahan, T. P.; Sun, X.; Smith, D. E.; Neumann, G. A.; Zuber, M. T.; Head, J. W., III

    2017-12-01

    The dust environment of the Moon is sensitive to the interplanetary meteoroid population and dust transport processes near the lunar surface, and this affects many aspects of lunar surface science and planetary exploration. The interplanetary meteoroid population poses a significant risk to spacecraft, yet it remains one of the more uncertain constituents of the space environment. Observed and hypothesized lunar dust transport mechanisms have included impact-generated dust plumes, electrostatic levitation, and dynamic lofting. Many details of the impactor flux and impact ejection process are poorly understood, a fact highlighted by recent discrepant estimates of the regolith mixing rate. Apollo-era observations of lunar horizon glow (LHG) were interpreted as sunlight forward-scattered by exospheric dust grains levitating in the top meter above the surface or lofted to tens of kilometers in altitude. However, recent studies have placed limits on the dust density orders of magnitude less than what was originally inferred, raising new questions on the time variability of the dust environment. Motivated by the need to better understand dust transport processes and the meteoroid population, the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) aboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) is conducting a campaign to search for LHG with the LOLA Laser Ranging (LR) system. Advantages of this LOLA LHG search include: (1) the LOLA-LR telescope can observe arbitrarily close to the Sun at any time during the year without damaging itself or the other instruments, (2) a long temporal baseline with observations both during and outside of meteor streams, which will improve the chances of detecting LHG, and (3) a focus on altitudes methodology, and preliminary results.

  7. On The Development of Additive Construction Technologies for Application to Development of Lunar/Martian Surface Structures Using In-Situ Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werkheiser, Niki; Fiske, Michael; Edmunson, Jennifer; Khoshnevis, Behrokh

    2015-01-01

    deposition using the Contour Crafting process. This process, conceived initially for rapid development of cementitious structures on Earth, also lends itself exceptionally well to the automated fabrication of planetary surface structures using minimally processed regolith as aggregate, and imported binder material or binders developed from in situ materials. This process has been used successfully in the fabrication of construction elements using lunar regolith simulant and Mars regolith simulant, both with various binder materials. These binder materials have resulted from extensive evaluation and include both "imported" binder materials that might be launched from Earth as well as some binder materials that can theoretically also be derived from existing regolith materials. They were chosen to 1) reduce penetrating radiation as much as possible, primarily with hydrogen-bearing polymers, 2) attempt to provide an air-tight structure, 3) sufficiently mix and adsorb to regolith grains for strength, 4) maximize tolerance to day-night thermal cycling, 5) possibly increase electrical conductivity to dissipate any accumulated static charge, and 6) ease their application on planetary surfaces (specifically, the accommodation of reduced atmosphere and lack of heat sinks). Some of these materials have been tested with respect to radiation mitigation, micrometeorite resistance, and resistance to larger, slower-traveling pieces of regolith impinging on the surface, simulating nearby launch and landing activities. Conceptual designs for a Continuous Feedstock Delivery/Mixing System (CFDMS) will also be presented and future planned activities will be discussed as well.

  8. Structural Analysis of Lunar Subsurface with Chang'E 3 Lunar Penetrating Radar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Yi; Lai, Jialong; Tang, Zesheng

    2015-04-01

    Geological structure of the subsurface of the Moon provides valuable information for our understanding of lunar evolution. Recently, Chang'E 3 has utilized lunar penetrating radar (LPR), which is equipped on the lunar rover named as Yutu, to detect the lunar geological structure in Northern Imbrium (44.1260N, 19.5014W) for the first time. As an in-situ detector, Chang'E 3 LPR has higher horizontal and vertical resolution and less clutter impact compared to spaceborne radars such as Chandrayaan-1 and Kaguya. In this work, we analyze the LPR data at 500 MHz transmission frequency to obtain the shallow subsurface structure of the landing area of Chang'E 3 in Mare Imbrium. First, filter method and amplitude recover algorithms are introduced for data processing to alleviate the adverse effects of environment and system noises and compensate the amplitude losses during signal propagation. Next, based on the processed LPR data, we present the methods to determine the interfaces between layers. A three-layered structure of the shallow surface of the Moon has been observed. The corresponding real part of relative dielectric constant is inverted with deconvolution method. The average dielectric constants of the surface, second and third layer is 2.8, 3.2 and 3.6, respectively. The phenomenon that the average dielectric constant increases with the depth is consistent with prior art. With the obtained dielectric constants, the thickness of each layer can be calculated. One possible geological picture of the observed three-layered structure is presented as follows. The top layer is lunar regolith with its thickness ranging from 0.59 m to 0.9 m. The second layer is the ejecta blanket of the nearby impact crater, and the corresponding thickness is between 3.6m to 3.9m, which is in good agreement with the model of ejecta blanket thickness (height) as a function of distance from the crater center proposed by Melosh in 1989. The third layer is regarded as early lunar regolith with 4

  9. Exospheric transport restrictions on water ice in lunar polar traps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodges, R. R., Jr.

    1991-01-01

    There is little doubt that at least 10 exp 17 g of water has accreted on the moon as a result of the reduction of ferric iron at the regolith surface by solar wind protons, the vaporization of chondrites, and perhaps comet impacts. Lacking an efficient escape mechanism, most of this water (or its progeny) is probably on the moon now. If the water were to have migrated to permanently shaded cold traps near the lunar poles, ice deposts with densities greater than 1000 g/sq cm would cover the traps, providing accessible resources. However, exospheric transport considerations suggest that the actual amount of water ice in the cold traps is probably too small to be of practical interest. The alternative is global assimilation of most of the water into the regolith, a process that must account for about 30 micromoles of water per gram of soil.

  10. Lunar Flashlight and Other Lunar Cubesats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Barbara

    2017-01-01

    Water is a human-exploitable resource. Lunar Flashlight is a Cubesat mission to detect and map lunar surface ice in permanently-shadowed regions of the lunar south pole. EM-1 will carry 13 Cubesat-class missions to further smallsat science and exploration capabilities; much room to infuse LEO cubesat methodology, models, and technology. Exploring the value of concurrent measurements to measure dynamical processes of water sources and sinks.

  11. A Combined XRD/XRF Instrument for Lunar Resource Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaniman, D. T.; Bish, D. L.; Chipera, S. J.; Blacic, J. D.

    1992-01-01

    Robotic surface missions to the Moon should be capable of measuring mineral as well as chemical abundances in regolith samples. Although much is already known about the lunar regolith, our data are far from comprehensive. Most of the regolith samples returned to Earth for analysis had lost the upper surface, or it was intermixed with deeper regolith. This upper surface is the part of the regolith most recently exposed to the solar wind; as such it will be important to resource assessment. In addition, it may be far easier to mine and process the uppermost few centimeters of regolith over a broad area than to engage in deep excavation of a smaller area. The most direct means of analyzing the regolith surface will be by studies in situ. In addition, the analysis of the impact-origin regolith surfaces, the Fe-rich glasses of mare pyroclastic deposits, are of resource interest, but are inadequately known; none of the extensive surface-exposed pyroclastic deposits of the Moon have been systematically sampled, although we know something about such deposits from the Apollo 17 site. Because of the potential importance of pyroclastic deposits, methods to quantify glass as well as mineral abundances will be important to resource evaluation. Combined x ray diffraction (XRD) and x ray fluorescence (XRF) analysis will address many resource characterization problems on the Moon. XRF methods are valuable for obtaining full major-element abundances with high precision. Such data, collected in parallel with quantitative mineralogy, permit unambiguous determination of both mineral and chemical abundances where concentrations are high enough to be of resource grade. Collection of both XRD and XRF data from a single sample provides simultaneous chemical and mineralogic information. These data can be used to correlate quantitative chemistry and mineralogy as a set of simultaneous linear equations, the solution of which can lead to full characterization of the sample. The use of

  12. Burn Delay Analysis of the Lunar Orbit Insertion for Korea Pathfinder Lunar Orbiter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bae, Jonghee; Song, Young-Joo; Kim, Young-Rok; Kim, Bangyeop

    2017-12-01

    The first Korea lunar orbiter, Korea Pathfinder Lunar Orbiter (KPLO), has been in development since 2016. After launch, the KPLO will execute several maneuvers to enter into the lunar mission orbit, and will then perform lunar science missions for one year. Among these maneuvers, the lunar orbit insertion (LOI) is the most critical maneuver because the KPLO will experience an extreme velocity change in the presence of the Moon’s gravitational pull. However, the lunar orbiter may have a delayed LOI burn during operation due to hardware limitations and telemetry delays. This delayed burn could occur in different captured lunar orbits; in the worst case, the KPLO could fly away from the Moon. Therefore, in this study, the burn delay for the first LOI maneuver is analyzed to successfully enter the desired lunar orbit. Numerical simulations are performed to evaluate the difference between the desired and delayed lunar orbits due to a burn delay in the LOI maneuver. Based on this analysis, critical factors in the LOI maneuver, the periselene altitude and orbit period, are significantly changed and an additional delta-V in the second LOI maneuver is required as the delay burn interval increases to 10 min from the planned maneuver epoch.

  13. Solar Flare Track Exposure Ages in Regolith Particles: A Calibration for Transmission Electron Microscope Measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berger, Eve L.; Keller, Lindsay P.

    2015-01-01

    Mineral grains in lunar and asteroidal regolith samples provide a unique record of their interaction with the space environment. Space weathering effects result from multiple processes including: exposure to the solar wind, which results in ion damage and implantation effects that are preserved in the rims of grains (typically the outermost 100 nm); cosmic ray and solar flare activity, which result in track formation; and impact processes that result in the accumulation of vapor-deposited elements, impact melts and adhering grains on particle surfaces. Determining the rate at which these effects accumulate in the grains during their space exposure is critical to studies of the surface evolution of airless bodies. Solar flare energetic particles (mainly Fe-group nuclei) have a penetration depth of a few millimeters and leave a trail of ionization damage in insulating materials that is readily observable by transmission electron microscope (TEM) imaging. The density of solar flare particle tracks is used to infer the length of time an object was at or near the regolith surface (i.e., its exposure age). Track measurements by TEM methods are routine, yet track production rate calibrations have only been determined using chemical etching techniques [e.g., 1, and references therein]. We used focused ion beam-scanning electron microscope (FIB-SEM) sample preparation techniques combined with TEM imaging to determine the track density/exposure age relations for lunar rock 64455. The 64455 sample was used earlier by [2] to determine a track production rate by chemical etching of tracks in anorthite. Here, we show that combined FIB/TEM techniques provide a more accurate determination of a track production rate and also allow us to extend the calibration to solar flare tracks in olivine.

  14. A Proof of Concept for In-Situ Lunar Dating

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, F. S.; Whitaker, T.; Levine, J.; Draper, D. S.; Harris, W.; Olansen, J.; Devolites, J.

    2015-12-01

    We have obtained improved 87Rb-87Sr isochrons for the Duluth Gabbro, an analog for lunar KREEP rocks, using a prototype spaceflight laser ablation resonance ionization mass spectrometer (LARIMS). The near-side of the Moon comprises previously un-sampled, KREEP rich, young-lunar basalts critical for calibrating the dating to constrain lunar history. Using a novel normalization approach, and by correcting for matrix-dependent isotope effects, we have been able to obtain a date of 1100 ± 200 Ma (Figure 1), compared to the previously established thermal ionization mass spectrometry measurement of 1096 ± 14 Ma. The precision of LARIMS is sufficient to constrain the current 1 Ga uncertainty of the lunar flux curve, allowing us to reassess the timing of peak lunar volcanism, and constrain lunar thermal evolution. Furthermore, an updated lunar flux curve has implications throughout the solar system. For example, Mars could have undergone a longer epoch of voluminous, shield-forming volcanism and associated mantle evolution, as well as a longer era of abundant volatiles and hence potential habitability. These alternative chronologies could even affect our understanding of the evolution of life on Earth: under the classic chronology, life is thought to have originated after the dwindling of bombardment, but under the alternative chronology, it might have appeared during heavy bombardment. In order to resolve the science questions regarding the history of the Moon, and in light of the Duluth Gabbro results, we recently proposed a Discovery mission called MARE: The Moon Age and Regolith Explorer. MARE would accomplish these goals by landing on a young, nearside lunar basalt flow southwest of Aristarchus that has a crater density corresponding to a highly uncertain absolute age, collecting >10 rock samples, and assessing their radioisotopic age, geochemistry, and mineralogy.

  15. Multi-physics design and analyses of long life reactors for lunar outposts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schriener, Timothy M.

    Future human exploration of the solar system is likely to include establishing permanent outposts on the surface of the Moon. These outposts will require reliable sources of electrical power in the range of 10's to 100's of kWe to support exploration and resource utilization activities. This need is best met using nuclear reactor power systems which can operate steadily throughout the long ˜27.3 day lunar rotational period, irrespective of location. Nuclear power systems can potentially open up the entire lunar surface for future exploration and development. Desirable features of nuclear power systems for the lunar surface include passive operation, the avoidance of single point failures in reactor cooling and the integrated power system, moderate operating temperatures to enable the use of conventional materials with proven irradiation experience, utilization of the lunar regolith for radiation shielding and as a supplemental neutron reflector, and safe post-operation decay heat removal and storage for potential retrieval. In addition, it is desirable for the reactor to have a long operational life. Only a limited number of space nuclear reactor concepts have previously been developed for the lunar environment, and these designs possess only a few of these desirable design and operation features. The objective of this research is therefore to perform design and analyses of long operational life lunar reactors and power systems which incorporate the desirable features listed above. A long reactor operational life could be achieved either by increasing the amount of highly enriched uranium (HEU) fuel in the core or by improving the neutron economy in the reactor through reducing neutron leakage and parasitic absorption. The amount of fuel in surface power reactors is constrained by the launch safety requirements. These include ensuring that the bare reactor core remains safely subcritical when submerged in water or wet sand and flooded with seawater in the unlikely

  16. LADEE LUNAR DUST EXPERIMENT

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This archive bundle includes data taken by the Lunar Dust Experiment (LDEX) instrument aboard the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) spacecraft....

  17. Endogenous Lunar Volatiles

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCubbin, F. M.; Liu, Y.; Barnes, J. J.; Anand, M.; Boyce, J. W.; Burney, D.; Day, J. M. D.; Elardo, S. M.; Hui, H.; Klima, R. L.; Magna, T.; Ni, P.; Steenstra, E.; Tartèse, R.; Vander Kaaden, K. E.

    2018-04-01

    This abstract discusses numerous outstanding questions on the topic of endogenous lunar volatiles that will need to be addressed in the coming years. Although substantial insights into endogenous lunar volatiles have been gained, more work remains.

  18. Critical Robotic Lunar Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plescia, J. B.

    2018-04-01

    Perhaps the most critical missions to understanding lunar history are in situ dating and network missions. These would constrain the volcanic and thermal history and interior structure. These data would better constrain lunar evolution models.

  19. Aluminothermic Reduction-Molten Salt Electrolysis Using Inert Anode for Oxygen and Al-Base Alloy Extraction from Lunar Soil Simulant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Kaiyu; Shi, Zhongning; Xu, Junli; Hu, Xianwei; Gao, Bingliang; Wang, Zhaowen

    2017-10-01

    Aluminothermic reduction-electrolysis using an inert anode process is proposed to extract oxygen and metals from Minnesota Lunar Simulant-1 (MLS-1). Effective aluminothermic reduction between dissolved MLS-1 and dissolved metal aluminum was achieved in cryolite salt media. The product phases obtained by aluminothermic reduction at 980°C for 4 h were Al, Si, and Al5FeSi, while the chemical components were 79.71 mass% aluminum, 12.03 mass% silicon, 5.91 mass% iron, and 2.35 mass% titanium. The cryolite salt containing Al2O3 was subsequently electrolyzed with Fe0.58-Ni0.42 inert anode at 960°C for 4 h. Oxygen was evolved at the anode with an anodic current efficiency of 78.28%. The results demonstrate that this two-step process is remarkably feasible for the extraterrestrial extraction of oxygen and metals. This process will help expand the existing in situ resource utilization methods.

  20. Hydrogen-Enhanced Lunar Oxygen Extraction and Storage Using Only Solar Power

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burton, rodney; King, Darren

    2013-01-01

    The innovation consists of a thermodynamic system for extracting in situ oxygen vapor from lunar regolith using a solar photovoltaic power source in a reactor, a method for thermally insulating the reactor, a method for protecting the reactor internal components from oxidation by the extracted oxygen, a method for removing unwanted chemical species produced in the reactor from the oxygen vapor, a method for passively storing the oxygen, and a method for releasing high-purity oxygen from storage for lunar use. Lunar oxygen exists in various types of minerals, mostly silicates. The energy required to extract the oxygen from the minerals is 30 to 60 MJ/kg O. Using simple heating, the extraction rate depends on temperature. The minimum temperature is approximately 2,500 K, which is at the upper end of available oven temperatures. The oxygen is released from storage in a purified state, as needed, especially if for human consumption. This method extracts oxygen from regolith by treating the problem as a closed batch cycle system. The innovation works equally well in Earth or Lunar gravity fields, at low partial pressure of oxygen, and makes use of in situ regolith for system insulation. The innovation extracts oxygen from lunar regolith using a method similar to vacuum pyrolysis, but with hydrogen cover gas added stoichiometrically to react with the oxygen as it is produced by radiatively heating regolith to 2,500 K. The hydrogen flows over and through the heating element (HE), protecting it from released oxygen. The H2 O2 heat of reaction is regeneratively recovered to assist the heating process. Lunar regolith is loaded into a large-diameter, low-height pancake reactor powered by photovoltaic cells. The reactor lid contains a 2,500 K HE that radiates downward onto the regolith to heat it and extract oxygen, and is shielded above by a multi-layer tungsten radiation shield. Hydrogen cover gas percolates through the perforated tungsten shielding and HE, preventing

  1. Interpretation of lunar heat flow data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Conel, J.E.; Morton, J.B.

    1975-01-01

    Lunar heat flow observations at the Apollo 15 and 17 sites can be interpreted to imply bulk U concentrations for the Moon of 5 to 8 times those of normal chondrites and 2 to 4 times terrestrial values inferred from the Earth's heat flow and the assumption of thermal steady state between surface heat flow and heat production. A simple model of nearsurface structure that takes into account the large difference in (highly insulating) regolith thickness between mare and highland provinces is considered. This model predicts atypically high local values of heat flow near the margins of mare regions--possibly a factor of 10 or so higher than the global average. A test of the proposed model using multifrequency microwave techniques appears possible wherein heat flow traverse measurements are made across mare-highland contacts. The theoretical considerations discussed here urge caution in attributing global significance to point heat-flow measurements on the Moon

  2. Element distribution and noble gas isotopic abundances in lunar meteorite Allan Hills A81005

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kraehenbuehl, U.; Eugster, O.; Niedermann, S.

    1986-01-01

    Antarctic meteorite ALLAN HILLS A81005, an anorthositic breccia, is recognized to be of lunar origin. The noble gases in this meteorite were analyzed and found to be solar-wind implanted gases, whose absolute and relative concentrations are quite similar to those in lunar regolith samples. A sample of this meteorite was obtained for the analysis of the noble gas isotopes, including Kr(81), and for the determination of the elemental abundances. In order to better determine the volume derived from the surface correlated gases, grain size fractions were prepared. The results of the instrumental measurements of the gamma radiation are listed. From the amounts of cosmic ray produced noble gases and respective production rates, the lunar surface residence times were calculated. It was concluded that the lunar surface time is about half a billion years

  3. Alteration of Lunar Rock Surfaces through Interaction with the Space Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frushour, A. M.; Noble, S. K; Christoffersen, R.; Keller, L P.

    2014-01-01

    Space weathering occurs on all ex-posed surfaces of lunar rocks, as well as on the surfaces of smaller grains in the lunar regolith. Space weather-ing alters these exposed surfaces primarily through the action of solar wind ions and micrometeorite impact processes. On lunar rocks specifically, the alteration products produced by space weathering form surface coatings known as patina. Patinas can have spectral reflectance properties different than the underlying rock. An understanding of patina composition and thickness is therefore important for interpreting re-motely sensed data from airless solar system bodies. The purpose of this study is to try to understand the physical and chemical properties of patina by expanding the number of patinas known and characterized in the lunar rock sample collection.

  4. A SIMS study of lunar 'komatiitic glasses' - Trace element characteristics and possible origin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shearer, C. K.; Papike, J. J.; Galbreath, K. C.; Wentworth, S. J.; Shimizu, N.

    1990-01-01

    In Apollo 16 regolith breccias, Wentworth and McKay (1988) identified a suite of minute (less than 120 microns) 'komatiitic glass beads'. The wide major element compositional range, and ultra-Mg-prime character of the glasses suggest a variety of possible origins from complex impact processes to complex volcanic processes involving rather unusual and primitive magmatism. The extent of trace element depletion or enrichment in these glasses appears to be correlated to the siderophile character of the element (ionization potential or experimentally determined silicate melt/Fe metal partition coefficients. The ultra-Mg-prime glasses are depleted in Co relative to a bulk Moon Mg/Co exhibited by many lunar samples (volcanic glasses, basalts, regolith breccia, estimated upper mantle). The low Co and high incompatible element concentrations diminish the possibility that these glasses are a product of lunar komatiitic volcanism or impact, excavation, and melting of a very high Mg-prime plutonic unit.

  5. A single launch lunar habitat derived from an NSTS external tank

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Charles B.; Butterfield, Ansel J.; Hypes, Warren D.; Nealy, John E.; Simonsen, Lisa C.

    1990-01-01

    A concept for using a spent External Tank from the National Space Transportation System (Shuttle) to derive a Lunar habitat is described. The concept is that the External Tank is carried into Low-Earth Orbit (LEO) where the oxygen tank-intertank subassembly is separated from the hydrogen tank, berthed to Space Station Freedom and the subassembly outfitted as a 12-person Lunar habitat using extravehicular activity (EVA) and intravehicular activity (IVA). A single launch of the NSTS Orbiter can place the External Tank in LEO, provide orbiter astronauts for disassembly of the External Tank, and transport the required subsystem hardware for outfitting the Lunar habitat. An estimate of the astronauts' EVA and IVA is provided. The liquid oxygen tank-intertank modifications utilize existing structures and openings for human access without compromising the structural integrity of the tank. The modification includes installation of living quarters, instrumentation, and an air lock. Feasibility studies of the following additional systems include micrometeoroid and radiation protection, thermal-control, environmental-control and life-support, and propulsion. The converted Lunar habitat is designed for unmanned transport and autonomous soft landing on the Lunar surface without need for site preparation. Lunar regolith is used to fill the micrometeoroid shield volume for radiation protection using a conveyor. The Lunar habitat concept is considered to be feasible by the year 2000 with the concurrent development of a space transfer vehicle and a Lunar lander for crew changeover and resupply.

  6. Contributions of solar-wind induced potential sputtering to the lunar surface erosion rate and it's exosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alnussirat, S. T.; Barghouty, A. F.; Edmunson, J. E.; Sabra, M. S.; Rickman, D. L.

    2018-04-01

    Sputtering of lunar regolith by solar-wind protons and heavy ions with kinetic energies of about 1 keV/amu is an important erosive process that affects the lunar surface and exosphere. It plays an important role in changing the chemical composition and thickness of the surface layer, and in introducing material into the exosphere. Kinetic sputtering is well modeled and understood, but understanding of mechanisms of potential sputtering has lagged behind. In this study we differentiate the contributions of potential sputtering from the standard (kinetic) sputtering in changing the chemical composition and erosion rate of the lunar surface. Also we study the contribution of potential sputtering in developing the lunar exosphere. Our results show that potential sputtering enhances the total characteristic sputtering erosion rate by about 44%, and reduces sputtering time scales by the same amount. Potential sputtering also introduces more material into the lunar exosphere.

  7. The search for Ar in the lunar atmosphere using the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter's LAMP instrument.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, J. C.; Stern, S. A.; Feldman, P. D.; Gladstone, R.; Retherford, K. D.; Greathouse, T. K.; Grava, C.

    2014-12-01

    The Apollo 17 mass spectrometer, LACE, first measured mass 40 particles in the lunar atmosphere, and over a nine-month period, detected variations correlated with the lunar day (Hoffman et al., 1973, LPSC, 4, 2865). LACE detected a high particle density at dusk (0.6-1.0x104 cm-3), decreasing through the lunar night to a few hundred cm-3, then increasing rapidly before dawn to levels 2-4 times greater than at dusk. No daytime measurements were made due to instrument saturation. Given the LACE measurements' periodic nature, and the Ar abundance in lunar regolith samples (Kaiser, 1972, EPSL, 13, 387), it was concluded that mass 40 was likely due to Ar. Benna et al. (2014, LPSC, 45, 1535) recently reported that the Neutral Mass Spectrometer (NMS) aboard LADEE also detected Ar (mass 40) with similar diurnal profiles. We report on UV spectra of the lunar atmosphere as obtained by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO). Aboard LRO is the UV-spectrograph, LAMP (Lyman Alpha Mapping Project), spanning the spectral range 575 to 1965 Å. LAMP is typically oriented toward the surface and has been mapping the Moon since September 2009. LAMP also observes the tenuous lunar atmosphere when the surface is in darkness, but the atmospheric column below LRO is illuminated. We have previously used nadir oriented twilight observations to examine the sparse lunar atmosphere (Feldman et al., 2012, Icarus, 221, 854; Cook et al., 2013, Icarus, 225, 681; Stern et al., 2013, Icarus, 226, 1210; Cook & Stern 2014, Icarus, 236, 48). In Cook et al., 2013, we reported an upper limit for Ar of 2.3x104 cm-3. Since then, we have collected additional data and refined our search method by focusing on the regions (near equator) and local times (dawn and dusk) where Ar has been reported previously. We have carefully considered effective area calibration and g-factor accuracies and find these to be unlikely explanations for the order of magnitude differences. We will report new results, which provide much

  8. A novel lunar bed rest analogue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavanagh, Peter R; Rice, Andrea J; Licata, Angelo A; Kuklis, Matthew M; Novotny, Sara C; Genc, Kerim O; Englehaupt, Ricki K; Hanson, Andrea M

    2013-11-01

    Humans will eventually return to the Moon and thus there is a need for a ground-based analogue to enable the study of physiological adaptations to lunar gravity. An important unanswered question is whether or not living on the lunar surface will provide adequate loading of the musculoskeletal system to prevent or attenuate the bone loss that is seen in microgravity. Previous simulations have involved tilting subjects to an approximately 9.5 degrees angle to achieve a lunar gravity component parallel to the long-axis of the body. However, subjects in these earlier simulations were not weight-bearing, and thus these protocols did not provide an analogue for load on the musculoskeletal system. We present a novel analogue which includes the capability to simulate standing and sitting in a lunar loading environment. A bed oriented at a 9.5 degrees angle was mounted on six linear bearings and was free to travel with one degree of freedom along rails. This allowed approximately 1/6 body weight loading of the feet during standing. "Lunar" sitting was also successfully simulated. A feasibility study demonstrated that the analogue was tolerated by subjects for 6 d of continuous bed rest and that the reaction forces at the feet during periods of standing were a reasonable simulation of lunar standing. During the 6 d, mean change in the volume of the quadriceps muscles was -1.6% +/- 1.7%. The proposed analogue would appear to be an acceptable simulation of lunar gravity and deserves further exploration in studies of longer duration.

  9. Irradiation and accretion of solids in space based on observations of lunar rocks and grains

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lal, D.

    1977-01-01

    Clues to a wide range of questions relating to the origin and evolution of the solar system and dynamic physical and electromagnetic processes occurring concurrently and in the past in our galaxy have been provided by a study of the lunar samples. This information is deduced from a variety of complementary physical and chemical evidence. In this presentation greatest emphasis is laid on information based on effects arising from interactions of low energy cosmic rays with lunar surface materials. The present discussions concern the nature of experimental data to date and implications thereof to the charged particle environment of the Moon, ancient magnetic fields and the nature of time scales involved in the irradiation and accretion of solids in space, based on lunar regolith dynamics. It becomes clear that there does not yet exist any consensus on the absolute values of charged particle or the meteorite fluxes, and also about the details of the evolution of the lunar regolith. The complex history of evolution of lunar material is slowly being understood and it is hoped that a great deal of quantitative information will soon be available which will in turn allow discussion of evolution of solid bodies in the solar system. (author)

  10. Regolith Advanced Surface Systems Operations Robot (RASSOR) Phase 2 and Smart Autonomous Sand-Swimming Excavator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandy, Michael

    2015-01-01

    The Regolith Advanced Surface Systems Operations Robot (RASSOR) Phase 2 is an excavation robot for mining regolith on a planet like Mars. The robot is programmed using the Robotic Operating System (ROS) and it also uses a physical simulation program called Gazebo. This internship focused on various functions of the program in order to make it a more professional and efficient robot. During the internship another project called the Smart Autonomous Sand-Swimming Excavator was worked on. This is a robot that is designed to dig through sand and extract sample material. The intern worked on programming the Sand-Swimming robot, and designing the electrical system to power and control the robot.

  11. The Nature of C Asteroid Regolith from Meteorite Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zolensky, M.; Mikouchi, T.; Hagiya, K.; Ohsumi, K.; Komatsu, M.; Jenniskens, P.; Le, L.; Yin, Q.-Z; Kebukawa, Y.; Fries, M.

    2013-01-01

    Regolith from C (and related) asteroid bodies are a focus of the current missions Dawn at Ceres, Hayabusa 2 and OSIRIS REx. An asteroid as large as Ceres is expected to be covered by a mature regolith, and as Hayabusa demonstrated, flat and therefore engineeringly-safe ponded deposits will probably be the sampling sites for both Hayabusa 2 and OSIRIS REx. Here we examine what we have learned about the mineralogy of fine-grained asteroid regolith from recent meteorite studies and the examination of the samples harvested from asteroid Itokawa by Hayabusa.

  12. Our Lunar Destiny: Creating a Lunar Economy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rohwer, Christopher J.

    2000-01-01

    "Our Lunar Destiny: Creating a Lunar Economy" supports a vision of people moving freely and economically between the earth and the Moon in an expansive space and lunar economy. It makes the economic case for the creation of a lunar space economy and projects the business plan that will make the venture an economic success. In addition, this paper argues that this vision can be created and sustained only by private enterprise and the legal right of private property in space and on the Moon. Finally, this paper advocates the use of lunar land grants as the key to unleashing the needed capital and the economic power of private enterprise in the creation of a 21st century lunar space economy. It is clear that the history of our United States economic system proves the value of private property rights in the creation of any new economy. It also teaches us that the successful development of new frontiers-those that provide economic opportunity for freedom-loving people-are frontiers that encourage, respect and protect the possession of private property and the fruits of labor and industry. Any new 21st century space and lunar economy should therefore be founded on this same principle.

  13. Strength and compressibility of returned lunar soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrier, W. D., III; Bromwell, L. G.; Martin, R. T.

    1972-01-01

    Two oedometer and three direct shear tests have been performed in vacuum on a 200 g sample of lunar soil from Apollo 12 (12001, 119). The compressibility data have been used to calculate bulk density and shear wave velocity versus depth on the lunar surface. The shear wave velocity was found to increase approximately with the one-fourth power of the depth, and the results suggest that the Apollo 14 Active Seismic Experiment may not have detected the Fra Mauro formation at a depth of 8.5 m, but only naturally consolidated lunar soil. The shear data indicate that the strength of the lunar soil sample is about 65% that of a ground basalt simulant at the same void ratio.

  14. Life Sciences Implications of Lunar Surface Operations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chappell, Steven P.; Norcross, Jason R.; Abercromby, Andrew F.; Gernhardt, Michael L.

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this report is to document preliminary, predicted, life sciences implications of expected operational concepts for lunar surface extravehicular activity (EVA). Algorithms developed through simulation and testing in lunar analog environments were used to predict crew metabolic rates and ground reaction forces experienced during lunar EVA. Subsequently, the total metabolic energy consumption, the daily bone load stimulus, total oxygen needed, and other variables were calculated and provided to Human Research Program and Exploration Systems Mission Directorate stakeholders. To provide context to the modeling, the report includes an overview of some scenarios that have been considered. Concise descriptions of the analog testing and development of the algorithms are also provided. This document may be updated to remain current with evolving lunar or other planetary surface operations, assumptions and concepts, and to provide additional data and analyses collected during the ongoing analog research program.

  15. Extraction of Water from Lunar Permafrost

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ethridge, Edwin C.; Kaukler, William

    2009-01-01

    Remote sensing indicates the presence of hydrogen rich regions associated with the lunar poles. The logical hypothesis is that there is cryogenically trapped water ice located in craters at the lunar poles. Some of the craters have been in permanent darkness for a billion years. The presence of water at the poles as well as other scientific advantages of a polar base, have influenced NASA plans for the lunar outpost. The lunar outpost has water and oxygen requirements on the order of 1 ton per year scaling up to as much as 5 tons per year. Microwave heating of the frozen permafrost has unique advantages for water extraction. Proof of principle experiments have successfully demonstrated that microwaves will couple to the cryogenic soil in a vacuum and the sublimed water vapor can be successfully captured on a cold trap. Dielectric property measurements of lunar soil simulant have been measured. Microwave absorption and attenuation in lunar soil simulant has been correlated with measured dielectric properties. Future work will be discussed.

  16. Can plants grow on Mars and the moon: a growth experiment on Mars and moon soil simulants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G W Wieger Wamelink

    Full Text Available When humans will settle on the moon or Mars they will have to eat there. Food may be flown in. An alternative could be to cultivate plants at the site itself, preferably in native soils. We report on the first large-scale controlled experiment to investigate the possibility of growing plants in Mars and moon soil simulants. The results show that plants are able to germinate and grow on both Martian and moon soil simulant for a period of 50 days without any addition of nutrients. Growth and flowering on Mars regolith simulant was much better than on moon regolith simulant and even slightly better than on our control nutrient poor river soil. Reflexed stonecrop (a wild plant; the crops tomato, wheat, and cress; and the green manure species field mustard performed particularly well. The latter three flowered, and cress and field mustard also produced seeds. Our results show that in principle it is possible to grow crops and other plant species in Martian and Lunar soil simulants. However, many questions remain about the simulants' water carrying capacity and other physical characteristics and also whether the simulants are representative of the real soils.

  17. Can plants grow on Mars and the moon: a growth experiment on Mars and moon soil simulants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wamelink, G W Wieger; Frissel, Joep Y; Krijnen, Wilfred H J; Verwoert, M Rinie; Goedhart, Paul W

    2014-01-01

    When humans will settle on the moon or Mars they will have to eat there. Food may be flown in. An alternative could be to cultivate plants at the site itself, preferably in native soils. We report on the first large-scale controlled experiment to investigate the possibility of growing plants in Mars and moon soil simulants. The results show that plants are able to germinate and grow on both Martian and moon soil simulant for a period of 50 days without any addition of nutrients. Growth and flowering on Mars regolith simulant was much better than on moon regolith simulant and even slightly better than on our control nutrient poor river soil. Reflexed stonecrop (a wild plant); the crops tomato, wheat, and cress; and the green manure species field mustard performed particularly well. The latter three flowered, and cress and field mustard also produced seeds. Our results show that in principle it is possible to grow crops and other plant species in Martian and Lunar soil simulants. However, many questions remain about the simulants' water carrying capacity and other physical characteristics and also whether the simulants are representative of the real soils.

  18. Influence of the Choice of Lunar Gravity Model on Orbit Determination for Lunar Orbiters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Young-Rok Kim

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available We examine the influence of the lunar gravity model on the orbit determination (OD of a lunar orbiter operating in a 100 km high, lunar polar orbit. Doppler and sequential range measurements by three Deep Space Network antennas and one Korea Deep Space Antenna were used. For measurement simulation and OD analysis, STK11 and ODTK6 were utilized. GLGM2, LP100K, LP150Q, GRAIL420A, and GRAIL660B were used for investigation of lunar gravity model selection effect. OD results were assessed by position and velocity uncertainties with error covariance and an external orbit comparison using simulated true orbit. The effect of the lunar gravity models on the long-term OD, degree and order level, measurement-acquisition condition, and lunar altitude was investigated. For efficiency verification, computational times for the five lunar gravity models were compared. Results showed that significant improvements to OD accuracy are observed by applying a GRAIL-based model; however, applying a full order and degree gravity modeling is not always the best strategy, owing to the computational burden. Consequently, we consider that OD using GRAIL660B with 70 × 70 degree and order is the most efficient strategy for mission preanalysis. This study provides useful guideline for KPLO OD analysis during nominal mission operation.

  19. Development of a Compact, Deep-Penetrating Heat Flow Instrument for Lunar Landers: In-Situ Thermal Conductivity System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagihara, S.; Zacny, K.; Hedlund, M.; Taylor, P. T.

    2012-01-01

    Geothermal heat flow is obtained as a product of the geothermal gradient and the thermal conductivity of the vertical soil/rock/regolith interval penetrated by the instrument. Heat flow measurements are a high priority for the geophysical network missions to the Moon recommended by the latest Decadal Survey and previously the International Lunar Network. One of the difficulties associated with lunar heat flow measurement on a robotic mission is that it requires excavation of a relatively deep (approx 3 m) hole in order to avoid the long-term temporal changes in lunar surface thermal environment affecting the subsurface temperature measurements. Such changes may be due to the 18.6-year-cylcle lunar precession, or may be initiated by presence of the lander itself. Therefore, a key science requirement for heat flow instruments for future lunar missions is to penetrate 3 m into the regolith and to measure both thermal gradient and thermal conductivity. Engineering requirements are that the instrument itself has minimal impact on the subsurface thermal regime and that it must be a low-mass and low-power system like any other science instrumentation on planetary landers. It would be very difficult to meet the engineering requirements, if the instrument utilizes a long (> 3 m) probe driven into the ground by a rotary or percussive drill. Here we report progress in our efforts to develop a new, compact lunar heat flow instrumentation that meets all of these science and engineering requirements.

  20. Digging Deep: Is Lunar Mantle Excavated Around the Imbrium Basin?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klima, R. L.; Bretzfelder, J.; Buczkowski, D.; Ernst, C. M.; Greenhagen, B. T.; Petro, N. E.; Shusterman, M. L.

    2017-12-01

    The Moon has experienced over a dozen impacts resulting in basins large enough to have excavated mantle material. With many of those basins concentrated on the lunar near side, and extensive regolith mixing since the lunar magma ocean crystallized, one might expect that some mantle material would have been found among the lunar samples on Earth. However, so far, no mantle clasts have been definitively identified in lunar samples [1]. From orbit, a number of olivine-bearing localities, potentially sourced from the mantle, have been identified around impact basins [2]. Based on analysis of near-infrared (NIR) and imaging data, [3] suggest that roughly 60% of these sites represent olivine from the mantle. If this is the case and the blocks are coherent and not extensively mixed into the regolith, these deposits should be ultramafic, containing olivine and/or pyroxenes and little to no plagioclase. In the mid-infrared, they would thus exhibit Christiansen features at wavelengths in excess of 8.5 μm, which has not been observed in global studies using the Diviner Lunar Radiometer [4]. We present an integrated study of the massifs surrounding the Imbrium basin, which, at over 1000 km wide, is large enough to have penetrated through the lunar crust and into the mantle. These massifs are clearly associated with the Imbrium basin-forming impact, but existing geological maps do not distinguish between whether they are likely ejecta or rather uplifted from beneath the surface during crustal rebound [5]. We examine these massifs using vis, NIR and Mid IR data to determine the relationships between and the bulk mineralogy of local lithologies. NIR data suggest that the massifs contain exposures of four dominant minerals: olivine, Mg-rich orthopyroxene, a second low-Ca pyroxene, and anorthite. Mid IR results suggest that though many of these massifs are plagioclase-rich, portions of some may be significantly more mafic. We will present our growing mineralogical map of the

  1. Dust particles investigation for future Russian lunar missions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dolnikov, Gennady; Horanyi, Mihaly; Esposito, Francesca; Zakharov, Alexander; Popel, Sergey; Afonin, Valeri; Borisov, Nikolay; Seran, Elena; Godefroy, Michel; Shashkova, Inna; Kuznetsov, Ilya; Lyash, Andrey; Vorobyova, Elena; Petrov, Oleg; Lisin, Evgeny

    One of the complicating factors of the future robotic and human lunar landing missions is the influence of the dust. Meteorites bombardment has accompanied by shock-explosive phenomena, disintegration and mix of the lunar soil in depth and on area simultaneously. As a consequence, the lunar soil has undergone melting, physical and chemical transformations. Recently we have the some reemergence for interest of Moon investigation. The prospects in current century declare USA, China, India, and European Union. In Russia also prepare two missions: Luna-Glob and Luna-Resource. Not last part of investigation of Moon surface is reviewing the dust condition near the ground of landers. Studying the properties of lunar dust is important both for scientific purposes to investigation the lunar exosphere component and for the technical safety of lunar robotic and manned missions. The absence of an atmosphere on the Moon's surface is leading to greater compaction and sintering. Properties of regolith and dust particles (density, temperature, composition, etc.) as well as near-surface lunar exosphere depend on solar activity, lunar local time and position of the Moon relative to the Earth's magneto tail. Upper layers of regolith are an insulator, which is charging as a result of solar UV radiation and the constant bombardment of charged particles, creates a charge distribution on the surface of the moon: positive on the illuminated side and negative on the night side. Charge distribution depends on the local lunar time, latitude and the electrical properties of the regolith (the presence of water in the regolith can influence the local distribution of charge). On light side of Moon near surface layer there exists possibility formation dusty plasma system. Altitude of levitation is depending from size of dust particle and Moon latitude. The distribution dust particle by size and altitude has estimated with taking into account photoelectrons, electrons and ions of solar wind, solar

  2. 3D Additive Construction with Regolith for Surface Systems

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Planetary surface exploration on Asteroids, the Moon, Mars and Martian Moons will require the stabilization of loose, fine, dusty regolith to avoid the effects of...

  3. Borehole depth and regolith aquifer hydraulic characteristics of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    EJIRO

    composition tend to exhibit similar hydraulic characteristics. But the poor performance of ... mum borehole depth in the regolith aquifer for the area and also reveals that ..... most important end products of chemical weathering of rocks of granitic ...

  4. Vibrational Locomotion Enabling Subsurface Exploration of Unconsolidated Regolith

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Proposed effort is to use vibration to propel a small, self-contained device through unconsolidated (loose, granular) material, such as regolith. Small scale robotic...

  5. Strata-1: An International Space Station Experiment into Fundamental Regolith Processes in Microgravity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fries, M.; Abell, P.; Brisset, J.; Britt, D.; Colwell, J.; Durda, D.; Dove, A.; Graham, L.; Hartzell, C.; John, K.; hide

    2016-01-01

    The Strata-1 experiment will study the evolution of asteroidal regolith through long-duration exposure of simulant materials to the microgravity environment on the International Space Station (ISS). Many asteroids feature low bulk densities, which implies high values of porosity and a mechanical structure composed of loosely bound particles, (i.e. the "rubble pile" model), a prime example of a granular medium. Even the higher-density, mechanically coherent asteroids feature a significant surface layer of loose regolith. These bodies are subjected to a variety of forces and will evolve in response to very small perturbations such as micrometeoroid impacts, planetary flybys, and the YORP effect. Our understanding of this dynamical evolution and the inter-particle forces involved would benefit from long-term observations of granular materials exposed to small vibrations in microgravity. A detailed understanding of asteroid mechanical evolution is needed in order to predict the surface characteristics of as-of-yet unvisited bodies, to understand the larger context of samples collected by missions such as OSIRIS-REx and Hayabusa 1 and 2, and to mitigate risks for both manned and unmanned missions to asteroidal bodies. Understanding regolith dynamics will inform designs of how to land and set anchors, safely sample/move material on asteroidal surfaces, process large volumes of material for in situ resource utilization (ISRU) purposes, and, in general, predict behavior of large and small particles on disturbed asteroid surfaces.

  6. Lunar Soil Erosion Physics for Landing Rockets on the Moon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clegg, Ryan N.; Metzger, Philip T.; Huff, Stephen; Roberson, Luke B.

    2008-01-01

    To develop a lunar outpost, we must understand the blowing of soil during launch and landing of the new Altair Lander. For example, the Apollo 12 Lunar Module landed approximately 165 meters from the deactivated Surveyor Ill spacecraft, scouring its surfaces and creating numerous tiny pits. Based on simulations and video analysis from the Apollo missions, blowing lunar soil particles have velocities up to 2000 m/s at low ejection angles relative to the horizon, reach an apogee higher than the orbiting Command and Service Module, and travel nearly the circumference of the Moon [1-3]. The low ejection angle and high velocity are concerns for the lunar outpost.

  7. NASA Lunar Sample Education Disk Program - Space Rocks for Classrooms, Museums, Science Centers and Libraries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, J. S.

    2009-12-01

    NASA is eager for students and the public to experience lunar Apollo rocks and regolith soils first hand. Lunar samples embedded in plastic are available for educators to use in their classrooms, museums, science centers, and public libraries for education activities and display. The sample education disks are valuable tools for engaging students in the exploration of the Solar System. Scientific research conducted on the Apollo rocks has revealed the early history of our Earth-Moon system. The rocks help educators make the connections to this ancient history of our planet as well as connections to the basic lunar surface processes - impact and volcanism. With these samples educators in museums, science centers, libraries, and classrooms can help students and the public understand the key questions pursued by missions to Moon. The Office of the Curator at Johnson Space Center is in the process of reorganizing and renewing the Lunar and Meteorite Sample Education Disk Program to increase reach, security and accountability. The new program expands the reach of these exciting extraterrestrial rocks through increased access to training and educator borrowing. One of the expanded opportunities is that trained certified educators from science centers, museums, and libraries may now borrow the extraterrestrial rock samples. Previously the loan program was only open to classroom educators so the expansion will increase the public access to the samples and allow educators to make the critical connections of the rocks to the exciting exploration missions taking place in our solar system. Each Lunar Disk contains three lunar rocks and three regolith soils embedded in Lucite. The anorthosite sample is a part of the magma ocean formed on the surface of Moon in the early melting period, the basalt is part of the extensive lunar mare lava flows, and the breccias sample is an important example of the violent impact history of the Moon. The disks also include two regolith soils and

  8. Orbital studies of lunar magnetism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mcleod, M. G.; Coleman, P. J., Jr.

    1982-01-01

    Limitations of present lunar magnetic maps are considered. Optimal processing of satellite derived magnetic anomaly data is also considered. Studies of coastal and core geomagnetism are discussed. Lunar remanent and induced lunar magnetization are included.

  9. The Effect of Dose Rate on Composite Durability When Exposed to a Simulated Long-Term Lunar Radiation Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rojdev, Kristina; O'Rourke, Mary Jane; Hill, Charles; Nutt, Steven; Atwell, William

    2011-01-01

    Human exploration of space beyond low Earth orbit (LEO) requires a safe living and working environment for crew. Composite materials are one type of material being investigated by NASA as a multi-functional structural approach to habitats for long-term use in space or on planetary surfaces with limited magnetic fields and atmosphere. These materials provide high strength with the potential for decreased weight and increased radiation protection of crew and electronics when compared with conventional aluminum structures. However, these materials have not been evaluated in a harsh radiation environment, as would be experienced outside of LEO or on a planetary surface. Thus, NASA has been investigating the durability of select composite materials in a long-term radiation environment. Previously, NASA exposed composite samples to a simulated, accelerated 30-year radiation treatment and tensile stresses similar to those of a habitat pressure vessel. The results showed evidence of potential surface oxidation and enhanced cross-linking of the matrix. As a follow-on study, we performed the same accelerated exposure alongside an exposure with a decreased dose rate. The slower dose ]rate is comparable to a realistic scenario, although still accelerated. Strain measurements were collected during exposure and showed that with a fastdose rate, the strain decreased with time, but with a slow ]dose rate, the strain increased with time. After the radiation exposures, samples were characterized via tensile tests, flexure tests, Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR), and Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC). The results of these tests will be discussed.

  10. In-Situ Strain Analysis of Potential Habitat Composites Exposed to a Simulated Long-Term Lunar Radiation Exposure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rojdev, Kristina; O'Rourke, Mary Jane; Hill, Charles; Nutt, Steven; Atwell, William

    2010-01-01

    NASA is studying the effects of long-term space radiation on potential multifunctional composite materials for habitats to better determine their characteristics in the harsh space environment. Two composite materials were selected for the study and were placed in a test stand that simulated the stresses of a pressure vessel wall on the material. The samples in the test stand were exposed to radiation at either a fast dose rate or a slow dose rate, and their strain and temperature was recorded during the exposure. It was found that during a fast dose rate exposure the materials saw a decreased strain with time, or a shrinking of the materials. Given previous radiation studies of polymers, this is believed to be a result of crosslinking occurring in the matrix material. However, with a slow dose rate, the materials saw an increase in strain with time, or a stretching of the materials. This result is consistent with scission or degradation of the matrix occurring, possibly due to oxidative degradation.

  11. Lunar Landing Training vehicle piloted by Neil Armstrong during training

    Science.gov (United States)

    1969-01-01

    A Lunar Landing Training Vehicle, piloted by Astronaut Neil Armstrong, goes through a checkout flight at Ellington Air Force Base on June 16, 1969. The total duration of the lunar simulation flight was five minutes and 59 seconds. Maximum altitude attained was about 300 feet.

  12. Erosive Wear Characterization of Materials for Lunar Construction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mpagazehe, Jeremiah N.; Street, Kenneth W., Jr.; Delgado, Irebert R.; Higgs, C. Fred, III

    2012-01-01

    NASA s Apollo missions revealed that exhaust from the retrorockets of landing spacecraft may act to significantly accelerate lunar dust on the surface of the Moon. A recent study by Immer et al. (C. Immer, P.T. Metzger, P.E. Hintze, A. Nick, and R. Horan, Apollo 12 Lunar Module exhaust plume impingement on Lunar Surveyor III, Icarus, Vol. 211, pp. 1089-1102, 2011) investigated coupons returned to Earth from the Surveyor III lunar probe which were subjected to lunar dust impingement by the Apollo 12 Lunar Module landing. Their study revealed that even with indirect impingement, the spacecraft sustained erosive damage from the fast-moving lunar dust particles. In this work, results are presented from a series of erosive wear experiments performed on 6061 Aluminum using the JSC-1AF lunar dust simulant. Optical profilometry was used to investigate the surface after the erosion process. It was found that even short durations of lunar dust simulant impacting at low velocities produced substantial changes in the surface.

  13. A Basic LEGO Reactor Design for the Provision of Lunar Surface Power

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    John Darrell Bess

    2008-01-01

    A final design has been established for a basic Lunar Evolutionary Growth-Optimized (LEGO) Reactor using current and near-term technologies. The LEGO Reactor is a modular, fast-fission, heatpipe-cooled, clustered-reactor system for lunar-surface power generation. The reactor is divided into subcritical units that can be safely launched with lunar shipments from Earth, and then emplaced directly into holes drilled into the lunar regolith to form a critical reactor assembly. The regolith would not just provide radiation shielding, but serve as neutron-reflector material as well. The reactor subunits are to be manufactured using proven and tested materials for use in radiation environments, such as uranium-dioxide fuel, stainless-steel cladding and structural support, and liquid-sodium heatpipes. The LEGO Reactor system promotes reliability, safety, and ease of manufacture and testing at the cost of an increase in launch mass per overall rated power level and a reduction in neutron economy when compared to a single-reactor system. A single unshielded LEGO Reactor subunit has an estimated mass of approximately 448 kg and provides approximately 5 kWe. The overall envelope for a single subunit with fully extended radiator panels has a height of 8.77 m and a diameter of 0.50 m. Six subunits could provide sufficient power generation throughout the initial stages of establishing a lunar outpost. Portions of the reactor may be neutronically decoupled to allow for reduced power production during unmanned periods of base operations. During later stages of lunar-base development, additional subunits may be emplaced and coupled into the existing LEGO Reactor network, subject to lunar base power demand. Improvements in reactor control methods, fuel form and matrix, shielding, as well as power conversion and heat rejection techniques can help generate an even more competitive LEGO Reactor design. Further modifications in the design could provide power generative opportunities for

  14. Lunar resource base

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pulley, John; Wise, Todd K.; Roy, Claude; Richter, Phil

    A lunar base that exploits local resources to enhance the productivity of a total SEI scenario is discussed. The goals were to emphasize lunar science and to land men on Mars in 2016 using significant amounts of lunar resources. It was assumed that propulsion was chemical and the surface power was non-nuclear. Three phases of the base build-up are outlined, the robotic emplacement of the first elements is detailed and a discussion of future options is included.

  15. Lunar and interplanetary trajectories

    CERN Document Server

    Biesbroek, Robin

    2016-01-01

    This book provides readers with a clear description of the types of lunar and interplanetary trajectories, and how they influence satellite-system design. The description follows an engineering rather than a mathematical approach and includes many examples of lunar trajectories, based on real missions. It helps readers gain an understanding of the driving subsystems of interplanetary and lunar satellites. The tables and graphs showing features of trajectories make the book easy to understand. .

  16. The negligible chondritic contribution in the lunar soils water.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephant, Alice; Robert, François

    2014-10-21

    Recent data from Apollo samples demonstrate the presence of water in the lunar interior and at the surface, challenging previous assumption that the Moon was free of water. However, the source(s) of this water remains enigmatic. The external flux of particles and solid materials that reach the surface of the airless Moon constitute a hydrogen (H) surface reservoir that can be converted to water (or OH) during proton implantation in rocks or remobilization during magmatic events. Our original goal was thus to quantify the relative contributions to this H surface reservoir. To this end, we report NanoSIMS measurements of D/H and (7)Li/(6)Li ratios on agglutinates, volcanic glasses, and plagioclase grains from the Apollo sample collection. Clear correlations emerge between cosmogenic D and (6)Li revealing that almost all D is produced by spallation reactions both on the surface and in the interior of the grains. In grain interiors, no evidence of chondritic water has been found. This observation allows us to constrain the H isotopic ratio of hypothetical juvenile lunar water to δD ≤ -550‰. On the grain surface, the hydroxyl concentrations are significant and the D/H ratios indicate that they originate from solar wind implantation. The scattering distribution of the data around the theoretical D vs. (6)Li spallation correlation is compatible with a chondritic contribution lunar surface, and (ii) the postulated chondritic lunar water is not retained in the regolith.

  17. Spectroscopic observations of the Moon at the lunar surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Yunzhao; Hapke, Bruce

    2018-02-01

    The Moon's reflectance spectrum records many of its important properties. However, prior to Chang'E-3 (CE-3), no spectra had previously been measured on the lunar surface. Here we show the in situ reflectance spectra of the Moon acquired on the lunar surface by the Visible-Near Infrared Spectrometer (VNIS) onboard the CE-3 rover. The VNIS detected thermal radiation from the lunar regolith, though with much shorter wavelength range than typical thermal radiometer. The measured temperatures are higher than expected from theoretical model, indicating low thermal inertia of the lunar soil and the effects of grain facet on soil temperature in submillimeter scale. The in situ spectra also reveal that 1) brightness changes visible from orbit are related to the reduction in maturity due to the removal of the fine and weathered particles by the lander's rocket exhaust, not the smoothing of the surface and 2) the spectra of the uppermost soil detected by remote sensing exhibit substantial differences with that immediately beneath, which has important implications for the remote compositional analysis. The reflectance spectra measured by VNIS not only reveal the thermal, compositional, and space-weathering properties of the Moon but also provide a means for the calibration of optical instruments that view the surface remotely.

  18. Accumulation and circulation of gaseous radon between lunar fines

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lambert, G.; Bristeau, P.; CEA Centre d'Etudes Nucleaires de Saclay, 91 - Gif-sur-Yvette; Le Roulley, J.C.

    1975-01-01

    During the lunar night, the temperature of the regolith upper layer is lower than the radon freezing point. Thus radon atoms coming from the interior can be trapped at the surface of the cold lunar fines. The 222 Rn daughter products, 210 Pb and 210 Po, are embedded in a very thin layer at the surface of the grains. It is therefore possible, by spectrometry, to distinguish between the continuum due to uranium, thorium (and decay products) homogeneously distributed and the narrow peak at 5.3MeV, due to an excess of 210 Pb. The mean day-and-night concentration was about 3.5x10 3 atoms of intergranular 222 Rn per g of superficial fines, corresponding to a continuous flow of 3 atoms per minute and per cm 2 of soil. To account for such a flow of radon atoms moving in a random walk from a 6 meter source depth, the pore size of the regolith should be 60μ. On the other hand, the involved changes in the isotopic composition of the radiogenic lead remain less than 1% [fr

  19. Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Lunar Workshops for Educators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, A. P.; Hsu, B. C.; Hessen, K.; Bleacher, L.

    2012-12-01

    The Lunar Workshops for Educators (LWEs) are a series of weeklong professional development workshops, accompanied by quarterly follow-up sessions, designed to educate and inspire grade 6-12 science teachers, sponsored by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO). Participants learn about lunar science and exploration, gain tools to help address common student misconceptions about the Moon, find out about the latest research results from LRO scientists, work with data from LRO and other lunar missions, and learn how to bring these data to their students using hands-on activities aligned with grade 6-12 National Science Education Standards and Benchmarks and through authentic research experiences. LWEs are held around the country, primarily in locations underserved with respect to NASA workshops. Where possible, workshops also include tours of science facilities or field trips intended to help participants better understand mission operations or geologic processes relevant to the Moon. Scientist and engineer involvement is a central tenant of the LWEs. LRO scientists and engineers, as well as scientists working on other lunar missions, present their research or activities to the workshop participants and answer questions about lunar science and exploration. This interaction with the scientists and engineers is consistently ranked by the LWE participants as one of the most interesting and inspiring components of the workshops. Evaluation results from the 2010 and 2011 workshops, as well as preliminary analysis of survey responses from 2012 participants, demonstrated an improved understanding of lunar science concepts among LWE participants in post-workshop assessments (as compared to identical pre-assessments) and a greater understanding of how to access and effectively share LRO data with students. Teachers reported increased confidence in helping students conduct research using lunar data, and learned about programs that would allow their students to make authentic

  20. LROC Advances in Lunar Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, M. S.

    2012-12-01

    Since entering orbit in 2009 the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC) has acquired over 700,000 Wide Angle Camera (WAC) and Narrow Angle Camera (NAC) images of the Moon. This new image collection is fueling research into the origin and evolution of the Moon. NAC images revealed a volcanic complex 35 x 25 km (60N, 100E), between Compton and Belkovich craters (CB). The CB terrain sports volcanic domes and irregular depressed areas (caldera-like collapses). The volcanic complex corresponds to an area of high-silica content (Diviner) and high Th (Lunar Prospector). A low density of impact craters on the CB complex indicates a relatively young age. The LROC team mapped over 150 volcanic domes and 90 volcanic cones in the Marius Hills (MH), many of which were not previously identified. Morphology and compositional estimates (Diviner) indicate that MH domes are silica poor, and are products of low-effusion mare lavas. Impact melt deposits are observed with Copernican impact craters (>10 km) on exterior ejecta, the rim, inner wall, and crater floors. Preserved impact melt flow deposits are observed around small craters (25 km diam.), and estimated melt volumes exceed predictions. At these diameters the amount of melt predicted is small, and melt that is produced is expected to be ejected from the crater. However, we observe well-defined impact melt deposits on the floor of highland craters down to 200 m diameter. A globally distributed population of previously undetected contractional structures were discovered. Their crisp appearance and associated impact crater populations show that they are young landforms (features place bounds on the amount of global radial contraction and the level of compressional stress in the crust. WAC temporal coverage of the poles allowed quantification of highly illuminated regions, including one site that remains lit for 94% of a year (longest eclipse period of 43 hours). Targeted NAC images provide higher resolution characterization of

  1. Location selection and layout for LB10, a lunar base at the Lunar North Pole with a liquid mirror observatory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Detsis, Emmanouil; Doule, Ondrej; Ebrahimi, Aliakbar

    2013-04-01

    We present the site selection process and urban planning of a Lunar Base for a crew of 10 (LB10), with an infrared astronomical telescope, based on the concept of the Lunar LIquid Mirror Telescope. LB10 is a base designated for permanent human presence on the Moon. The base architecture is based on utilization of inflatable, rigid and regolith structures for different purposes. The location for the settlement is identified through a detailed analysis of surface conditions and terrain parameters around the Lunar North and South Poles. A number of selection criteria were defined regarding construction, astronomical observations, landing and illumination conditions. The location suggested for the settlement is in the vicinity of the North Pole, utilizing the geographical morphology of the area. The base habitat is on a highly illuminated and relatively flat plateau. The observatory in the vicinity of the base, approximately 3.5 kilometers from the Lunar North Pole, inside a crater to shield it from Sunlight. An illustration of the final form of the habitat is also depicted, inspired by the baroque architectural form.

  2. Astronaut Neil Armstrong participates in simulation of moon's surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    1969-01-01

    Astronaut Neil A. Armstrong, wearing an Extravehicular Mobility Unit, deploys a lunar surface television camera during lunar surface simulation training in bldg 9, Manned Spacecraft Center. Armstrong is the prime crew commander of the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission.

  3. Lunar evolution: is there a global radioactive crust on the moon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Murthy, V.R.

    1977-01-01

    Chemical and isotopic analyses of various grainsize fractions of lunar soils show the presence of an 'exotic component' in practically all lunar soils. The patterns of enrichments in the grain-size fractions and the Sr-isotopic data show that the regolith evolution displays the combined effects of comminution of local rock types and addition of the exotic component. The chemical characteristics of this exotic component as deduced from the chemical and isotopic data in soils from Apollo 11, 12, 15 and 16 uniformly point to compositions similar to the material from Fra Mauro region collected in the Apollo 14 mission. There is a strong correlation between the amount of exotic component in a soil and its distance from the Fra Mauro region. It is suggested that the exotic component represents trace element enriched material from the Imbrium-Procellarum region, which was surficially deposited during Imbrium excavation and re-exposed from under the mare-lavas in subsequent cratering events. Surficial transport processes have distributed these materials widely over the lunar surface. There appears no need to invoke a global radioactive crust on the Moon nor of 'hot spots' distributed over the entire surface of the Moon to explain the ubiquitous presence of this component in lunar regolith, nor is there a compelling reason at present to postulate a global melting process for the generation of highly differentiated materials such as 'kreep' and the exotic component. (author)

  4. Lunar Soil Erosion Physics for Landing Rockets on the Moon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clegg, Ryan; Metzger, Philip; Roberson, Luke; Stephen, Huff

    2010-03-01

    To develop a lunar outpost, we must understand the blowing of soil during launch and landing of the new Altair Lander. For example, the Apollo 12 Lunar Module landed approximately 165 meters from the deactivated Surveyor III spacecraft, scouring its surfaces and creating numerous tiny pits. Based on simulations and video analysis from the Apollo missions, blowing lunar soil particles have velocities up to 2000 m/s at low ejection angles relative to the horizon, reach an apogee higher than the orbiting Command and Service Module, and travel nearly the circumference of the Moon. The low ejection angle and high velocity are concerns for the lunar outpost. As a first step in investigating this concern, we have performed a series of low-velocity impact experiments in a modified sandblasting hood using lunar soil simulant impacted upon various materials that are commonly used in spaceflight hardware. It was seen that considerable damage is inevitable and protective barriers need to be designed.

  5. Lunar-A

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    penetrators will be transmitted to the earth station via the Lunar-A mother spacecraft orbiting at an altitude of about .... to save the power consumption of the Lunar-A penetrator .... and an origin-time versus tidal-phases correlation. (Toksoz et al ...

  6. Generalized Software Architecture Applied to the Continuous Lunar Water Separation Process and the Lunar Greenhouse Amplifier

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perusich, Stephen; Moos, Thomas; Muscatello, Anthony

    2011-01-01

    This innovation provides the user with autonomous on-screen monitoring, embedded computations, and tabulated output for two new processes. The software was originally written for the Continuous Lunar Water Separation Process (CLWSP), but was found to be general enough to be applicable to the Lunar Greenhouse Amplifier (LGA) as well, with minor alterations. The resultant program should have general applicability to many laboratory processes (see figure). The objective for these programs was to create a software application that would provide both autonomous monitoring and data storage, along with manual manipulation. The software also allows operators the ability to input experimental changes and comments in real time without modifying the code itself. Common process elements, such as thermocouples, pressure transducers, and relative humidity sensors, are easily incorporated into the program in various configurations, along with specialized devices such as photodiode sensors. The goal of the CLWSP research project is to design, build, and test a new method to continuously separate, capture, and quantify water from a gas stream. The application is any In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) process that desires to extract or produce water from lunar or planetary regolith. The present work is aimed at circumventing current problems and ultimately producing a system capable of continuous operation at moderate temperatures that can be scaled over a large capacity range depending on the ISRU process. The goal of the LGA research project is to design, build, and test a new type of greenhouse that could be used on the moon or Mars. The LGA uses super greenhouse gases (SGGs) to absorb long-wavelength radiation, thus creating a highly efficient greenhouse at a future lunar or Mars outpost. Silica-based glass, although highly efficient at trapping heat, is heavy, fragile, and not suitable for space greenhouse applications. Plastics are much lighter and resilient, but are not

  7. Performance evaluation of lunar penetrating radar onboard the rover of CE-3 probe based on results from ground experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Hong-Bo; Zheng, Lei; Su, Yan; Fang, Guang-You; Zhou, Bin; Feng, Jian-Qing; Xing, Shu-Guo; Dai, Shun; Li, Jun-Duo; Ji, Yi-Cai; Gao, Yun-Ze; Xiao, Yuan; Li, Chun-Lai

    2014-12-01

    Lunar Penetrating Radar (LPR) onboard the rover that is part of the Chang'e-3 (CE-3) mission was firstly utilized to obtain in situ measurements about geological structure on the lunar surface and the thickness of the lunar regolith, which are key elements for studying the evolutional history of lunar crust. Because penetration depth and resolution of LPR are related to the scientific objectives of this mission, a series of ground-based experiments using LPR was carried out, and results of the experimental data were obtained in a glacial area located in the northwest region of China. The results show that the penetration depth of the first channel antenna used for LPR is over 79 m with a resolution of 2.8 m, and that for the second channel antenna is over 50.8 m with a resolution of 17.1 cm.

  8. Performance evaluation of lunar penetrating radar onboard the rover of CE-3 probe based on results from ground experiments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang Hong-Bo; Zheng Lei; Su Yan; Feng Jian-Qing; Xing Shu-Guo; Dai Shun; Li Jun-Duo; Xiao Yuan; Li Chun-Lai; Fang Guang-You; Zhou Bin; Ji Yi-Cai; Gao Yun-Ze

    2014-01-01

    Lunar Penetrating Radar (LPR) onboard the rover that is part of the Chang'e-3 (CE-3) mission was firstly utilized to obtain in situ measurements about geological structure on the lunar surface and the thickness of the lunar regolith, which are key elements for studying the evolutional history of lunar crust. Because penetration depth and resolution of LPR are related to the scientific objectives of this mission, a series of ground-based experiments using LPR was carried out, and results of the experimental data were obtained in a glacial area located in the northwest region of China. The results show that the penetration depth of the first channel antenna used for LPR is over 79 m with a resolution of 2.8 m, and that for the second channel antenna is over 50.8 m with a resolution of 17.1 cm

  9. Lunar Phase Function at 1064 Nm from Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter Passive and Active Radiometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barker, M. K.; Sun, X.; Mazarico, E.; Neumann, G. A.; Zuber, M. T.; Smith, D. E.

    2016-01-01

    We present initial calibration and results of passive radiometry collected by the Lunar Orbiter Laser Al- timeter onboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter over the course of 12 months. After correcting for time- and temperature-dependent dark noise and detector responsivity variations, the LOLA passive radiometry measurements are brought onto the absolute radiance scale of the SELENE Spectral Profiler. The resulting photometric precision is estimated to be approximately 5%. We leverage the unique ability of LOLA to measure normal albedo to explore the 1064 nm phase function's dependence on various geologic parameters. On a global scale, we find that iron abundance and optical maturity (quantified by FeO and OMAT) are the dominant controlling parameters. Titanium abundance (TiO2 ), surface roughness on decimeter to decameter scales, and soil thermophysical properties have a smaller effect, but the latter two are correlated with OMAT, indicating that exposure age is the driving force behind their effects in a globally-averaged sense. The phase function also exhibits a dependence on surface slope at approximately 300 m baselines, possibly the result of mass wasting exposing immature material and/or less space weathering due to reduced sky visibility. Modeling the photometric function in the Hapke framework, we find that, relative to the highlands, the maria exhibit decreased backscattering, a smaller opposition effect (OE) width, and a smaller OE amplitude. Immature highlands regolith has a higher backscattering fraction and a larger OE width compared to mature highlands regolith. Within the maria, the backscattering fraction and OE width show little dependence on TiO2 and OMAT. Variations in the phase function shape at large phase angles are observed in and around the Copernican-aged Jackson crater, including its dark halo, a putative impact melt deposit. Finally, the phase function of the Reiner Gamma Formation behaves more optically immature than is typical for its

  10. Can Fractional Crystallization of a Lunar Magma Ocean Produce the Lunar Crust?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rapp, Jennifer F.; Draper, David S.

    2013-01-01

    New techniques enable the study of Apollo samples and lunar meteorites in unprecedented detail, and recent orbital spectral data reveal more about the lunar farside than ever before, raising new questions about the supposed simplicity of lunar geology. Nevertheless, crystallization of a global-scale magma ocean remains the best model to account for known lunar lithologies. Crystallization of a lunar magma ocean (LMO) is modeled to proceed by two end-member processes - fractional crystallization from (mostly) the bottom up, or initial equilibrium crystallization as the magma is vigorously convecting and crystals remain entrained, followed by crystal settling and a final period of fractional crystallization [1]. Physical models of magma viscosity and convection at this scale suggest that both processes are possible. We have been carrying out high-fidelity experimental simulations of LMO crystallization using two bulk compositions that can be regarded as end-members in the likely relevant range: Taylor Whole Moon (TWM) [2] and Lunar Primitive Upper Mantle (LPUM) [3]. TWM is enriched in refractory elements by 1.5 times relative to Earth, whereas LPUM is similar to the terrestrial primitive upper mantle, with adjustments made for the depletion of volatile alkalis observed on the Moon. Here we extend our earlier equilibrium-crystallization experiments [4] with runs simulating full fractional crystallization

  11. Evaluation of Sulfur 'Concrete' for Use as a Construction Material on the Lunar Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grugel, R. N.

    2008-01-01

    Combining molten sulfur with any number of aggregate materials forms, when solid, a mixture having attributes similar, if not better, to conventional water-based concrete. As a result the use of sulfur "concrete" on Earth is well established, particularly in corrosive environments. Consequently, discovery of troilite (FeS) on the lunar surface prompted numerous scenarios about its reduction to elemental sulfur for use, in combination with lunar regolith, as a potential construction material; not requiring water, a precious resource, for its manufacture is an obvious advantage. However, little is known about the viability of sulfur concrete in an environment typified by extreme temperatures and essentially no atmosphere. The experimental work presented here evaluates the response of pure sulfur and sulfur concrete subjected to laboratory conditions that approach those expected on the lunar surface, the results suggesting a narrow window of application.

  12. Lunar Gene Bank for Endangered Species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swain, Ramakrushna

    2016-07-01

    Introduction: Before the dawn of the 22nd century, we face the huge risk of losing our genetic heritage accumulated during aeons of evolution. The losses include hundreds of vertebrates, human gene pools, hundreds of thousands of plants and over a million insect species. As we have observed, adequate conservation of habitat is unfeasible and active breeding programs cover only a handful of the many thousand species threatened. We propose cryopreservation of germplasms by constructing a cDNA library based gene bank for endangered species in the permanently shadowed polar lunar craters that would provide immunity from both natural disadvantages and humanitarian intrusions. Rationale: Under such alarming circumstances, we turned to cryopreservation as an option but over thousands of years economic depression, sabotage, conflicts, warfare or even a brief disruption to the precise cryopreservation can hamper the storage of genetic samples.When we are considering conservation it is always preferable to go for a more secure and permanent solution. It was found out that the climatic and strategic location of the lunar polar craters are adequately hospitable, remote and free of maintenance and human observation as they provide naturally cryogenic temperature, reduced gravity and vacuum environment, non-reactive surface, safety from celestial intrusion and permanent shadow which doesn't allow the temperature to fluctuate thus providing most suitable storage facilities for the germplasms. PSRs provide steady temperature of 40- 60K and immunity to earthquakes due to low seismic activity. At these sites, burial in one meter or more of the regolith will provide protection against the solar wind, solar and galactic cosmic rays and micrometeorite impact. It provides the minimum necessary barrier from human intervention and at the same time enables easy retrieval for future usage. Genetic samples of endangered species can enable restoration even after its extinction. Preserved

  13. Earth-based radar and LRO Diviner constraints on the recent rate of lunar ejecta processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghent, Rebecca R.; Hayne, Paul O.; Bandfield, Joshua L.; Campbell, Bruce A.; Carter, Lynn M.; Allen, Carlton

    2013-04-01

    Many large craters on the lunar nearside show radar circular polarization ratio (CPR) signatures consistent with the presence of blocky ejecta blankets, to distances of 0.5 to 1.5 crater radii. However, most of these surfaces show very low surface rock concentration values and only limited enhancements in regolith temperatures calculated from Diviner nighttime infrared observations. Because the radar signal is integrated over the radar penetration depth (up to several meters), but the Diviner signal is sensitive only to rocks within the upper meter of the surface, this indicates that ejecta blocks on the surface and in the shallow subsurface are quickly removed by continued bombardment. Deeper subsurface rocks, which are clearly evident in radar CPR maps but are covered by a sufficiently thick layer of thermally insulating regolith material to render them invisible to Diviner, persist for much longer. By matching the results of one-dimensional thermal models to Diviner nighttime temperatures, we can constrain the thermophysical properties of the upper 1 meter of regolith. We find that Diviner nighttime cooling curves are best fit by a density profile that varies exponentially with depth, consistent with a mixture of rocks and regolith fines, with increasing rock content with depth. Using this density profile together with the surface rock abundance, we can estimate the excess rock mass represented by rocks on the surface and within the upper meter of regolith for individual craters. We find that for craters of known age younger than ~1.7Ga, a robust correlation exists between ejecta mass and crater age, which yields the first observational estimate of the rate of lunar ejecta processing. Our results show that crater ejecta are initially removed very quickly (perhaps up to ~1cm / m.y.), with the rate slowing over a short period of time to less than 1 mm / m.y., as the number of blocks on the surface decreases and the volume of protective regolith material increases

  14. Lunar neutron source function

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kornblum, J.J.

    1974-01-01

    The search for a quantitative neutron source function for the lunar surface region is justified because it contributes to our understanding of the history of the lunar surface and of nuclear process occurring on the moon since its formation. A knowledge of the neutron source function and neutron flux distribution is important for the interpretation of many experimental measurements. This dissertation uses the available pertinent experimental measurements together with theoretical calculations to obtain an estimate of the lunar neutron source function below 15 MeV. Based upon reasonable assumptions a lunar neutron source function having adjustable parameters is assumed for neutrons below 15 MeV. The lunar neutron source function is composed of several components resulting from the action of cosmic rays with lunar material. A comparison with previous neutron calculations is made and significant differences are discussed. Application of the results to the problem of lunar soil histories is examined using the statistical model for soil development proposed by Fireman. The conclusion is drawn that the moon is losing mass

  15. Lunar transportation system

    Science.gov (United States)

    1993-07-01

    The University Space Research Association (USRA) requested the University of Minnesota Spacecraft Design Team to design a lunar transportation infrastructure. This task was a year long design effort culminating in a complete conceptual design and presentation at Johnson Space Center. The mission objective of the design group was to design a system of vehicles to bring a habitation module, cargo, and crew to the lunar surface from LEO and return either or both crew and cargo safely to LEO while emphasizing component commonality, reusability, and cost effectiveness. During the course of the design, the lunar transportation system (LTS) has taken on many forms. The final design of the system is composed of two vehicles, a lunar transfer vehicle (LTV) and a lunar excursion vehicle (LEV). The LTV serves as an efficient orbital transfer vehicle between the earth and the moon while the LEV carries crew and cargo to the lunar surface. Presented in the report are the mission analysis, systems layout, orbital mechanics, propulsion systems, structural and thermal analysis, and crew systems, avionics, and power systems for this lunar transportation concept.

  16. Lunar Flashlight: Exploration and Science at the Moon with a 6U Cubesat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, B. A.; Hayne, P. O.; Greenhagen, B. T.; Paige, D. A.

    2015-12-01

    Understanding the composition, quantity, distribution, and form of water and other volatiles associated with lunar permanently shadowed regions (PSRs) is identified as a NASA Strategic Knowledge Gap (SKG) for Human Exploration. These polar volatile deposits are also scientifically interesting, having the potential to reveal important information about the delivery of water to the Earth-Moon system. In order to address NASA's SKGs, the Lunar Flashlight mission was selected as a secondary payload on the first test flight (EM1) of the Space Launch System (SLS), currently scheduled for 2018. Recent reflectance data from LRO instruments suggest volatiles may be present on the surface, though the detection is not yet definitive. The goal of Lunar Flashlight is to determine the presence or absence of exposed water ice and map its concentration at the 1-2 kilometer scale within the PSRs. After being ejected in cislunar space by SLS, Lunar Flashlight maneuvers into a low-energy transfer to lunar orbit and then an elliptical polar orbit, spiraling down to a perilune of 10-30 km above the south pole for data collection. Lunar Flashlight will illuminate permanently shadowed regions, measuring surface albedo with point spectrometer at 1.1, 1.5 1.9, and 2.0 mm. Water ice will be distinguished from dry regolith in two ways: 1) spatial variations in absolute reflectance (water ice is much brighter in the continuum channels), and 2) reflectance ratios between absorption and continuum channels. Derived reflectance and water ice band depths will be mapped onto the lunar surface in order to distinguish the composition of the PSRs from that of the sunlit terrain, and to compare with lunar datasets such as LRO and Moon Mineralogy Mapper. Lunar Flashlight enables a low-cost path to science and in-situ resource utilization (ISRU) by identifying ice deposits (if there are any), which would be a game-changing result for expanded human exploration.

  17. Geographic information system datasets of regolith-thickness data, regolith-thickness contours, raster-based regolith thickness, and aquifer-test and specific-capacity data for the Lost Creek Designated Ground Water Basin, Weld, Adams, and Arapahoe Counties, Colorado

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnold, L. Rick

    2010-01-01

    These datasets were compiled in support of U.S. Geological Survey Scientific-Investigations Report 2010-5082-Hydrogeology and Steady-State Numerical Simulation of Groundwater Flow in the Lost Creek Designated Ground Water Basin, Weld, Adams, and Arapahoe Counties, Colorado. The datasets were developed by the U.S. Geological Survey in cooperation with the Lost Creek Ground Water Management District and the Colorado Geological Survey. The four datasets are described as follows and methods used to develop the datasets are further described in Scientific-Investigations Report 2010-5082: (1) ds507_regolith_data: This point dataset contains geologic information concerning regolith (unconsolidated sediment) thickness and top-of-bedrock altitude at selected well and test-hole locations in and near the Lost Creek Designated Ground Water Basin, Weld, Adams, and Arapahoe Counties, Colorado. Data were compiled from published reports, consultant reports, and from lithologic logs of wells and test holes on file with the U.S. Geological Survey Colorado Water Science Center and the Colorado Division of Water Resources. (2) ds507_regthick_contours: This dataset consists of contours showing generalized lines of equal regolith thickness overlying bedrock in the Lost Creek Designated Ground Water Basin, Weld, Adams, and Arapahoe Counties, Colorado. Regolith thickness was contoured manually on the basis of information provided in the dataset ds507_regolith_data. (3) ds507_regthick_grid: This dataset consists of raster-based generalized thickness of regolith overlying bedrock in the Lost Creek Designated Ground Water Basin, Weld, Adams, and Arapahoe Counties, Colorado. Regolith thickness in this dataset was derived from contours presented in the dataset ds507_regthick_contours. (4) ds507_welltest_data: This point dataset contains estimates of aquifer transmissivity and hydraulic conductivity at selected well locations in the Lost Creek Designated Ground Water Basin, Weld, Adams, and

  18. Calibrating the Regolith X-ray Imaging Spectrometer (REXIS)

    OpenAIRE

    McIntosh, Missy; Hong, Jaesub; Allen, Branden; Grindlay, Jonathan

    2014-01-01

    This paper describes the onboard calibration process of REXIS (the Regolith X-ray Imaging Spectrometer), an instrument on OSIRIS-REx. OSIRIS-REx, scheduled to be launched in 2016, is a planetary mission intending to return a regolith sample from a near Earth asteroid called Bennu. REXIS, a student-led collaboration between Harvard and MIT, is a soft X-ray (0.5-7.5 keV) coded-aperture telescope with four X-ray CCDs and a gold coated stainless steel mask. REXIS will measure the surface elementa...

  19. Exploration of the Moon to Enable Lunar and Planetary Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neal, C. R.

    2014-12-01

    The Moon represents an enabling Solar System exploration asset because of its proximity, resources, and size. Its location has facilitated robotic missions from 5 different space agencies this century. The proximity of the Moon has stimulated commercial space activity, which is critical for sustainable space exploration. Since 2000, a new view of the Moon is coming into focus, which is very different from that of the 20th century. The documented presence of volatiles on the lunar surface, coupled with mature ilmenite-rich regolith locations, represent known resources that could be used for life support on the lunar surface for extended human stays, as well as fuel for robotic and human exploration deeper into the Solar System. The Moon also represents a natural laboratory to explore the terrestrial planets and Solar System processes. For example, it is an end-member in terrestrial planetary body differentiation. Ever since the return of the first lunar samples by Apollo 11, the magma ocean concept was developed and has been applied to both Earth and Mars. Because of the small size of the Moon, planetary differentiation was halted at an early (primary?) stage. However, we still know very little about the lunar interior, despite the Apollo Lunar Surface Experiments, and to understand the structure of the Moon will require establishing a global lunar geophysical network, something Apollo did not achieve. Also, constraining the impact chronology of the Moon allows the surfaces of other terrestrial planets to be dated and the cratering history of the inner Solar System to be constrained. The Moon also represents a natural laboratory to study space weathering of airless bodies. It is apparent, then, that human and robotic missions to the Moon will enable both science and exploration. For example, the next step in resource exploration is prospecting on the surface those deposits identified from orbit to understand the yield that can be expected. Such prospecting will also

  20. Data Processing and Primary results of Lunar Penetrating Radar on Board the Chinese Yutu Rover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Yan; Xing, Shuguo; Feng, Jianqing; Dai, Shun; Ding, Chunyu; Xiao, Yuan; Zhang, Hongbo; Zhao, Shu; Xue, Xiping; Zhang, Xiaoxia; Liu, Bin; Yao, Meijuan; Li, Chunlai

    2015-04-01

    Radar is an attractive and powerful technique to observe the Moon. Radar mapping of the Moon's topography was first done by the Arecibo telescope at a wave- length of 70 cm in 1964 (Thompson & Dyce 1966). Chang'e-3 (CE-3) was successfully launched on 2013 December 2, and the landing place is in Mare Imbrium, about 40km south of the 6km diameter Laplace F crater, at 44.1214ON, 19.5116OW. The Lunar ground-Penetrating Radar (LPR) is one of scientific payloads of the Yutu rover, aiming to achieve the first direct measurements and explore the lunar subsurface structure. Compared with ALSE and LRS, LPR works at higher frequencies of 60 MHz and 500 MHz. Thus it can probe regions with shallower depth including the regolith and lunar crust at higher range resolution. The LPR uses one transmitting and one receiving dipole antenna for 60 MHz which are installed at the back of the rover. For 500 MHz, one transmitting and two bow-tie receiving antennas are attached to the bottom of the rover. It transmits a pulsed signal and receives the radar echo signal along the path that the Yutu rover traverses. The free space range resolutions are ~ 50 cm and ~ 25 m for 60 MHz and 500 MHz respectively. The radar data stop being sampled and are sent back to Earth when Yutu is stationary. Observations are simultaneously carried out at frequencies of 60 MHz and 500 MHz. Since the Yutu rover had severe problems during its second lunar day, it is pity that the Yutu rover only transversed a limited distance of 114.8m. In total, 566 MB of data were obtained. The scientific data are archived and distributed by National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences. Data processing has been done in order to eliminate the effect of the instrument. To obtain clear radar images, more data processing need to be applied such as coordinate transformation, data editing, background removal, the operations of smoothing and gain resetting. The radar signal could detect hundreds of meters deep at

  1. Astronaut Neil Armstrong participates in simulation training

    Science.gov (United States)

    1969-01-01

    Astronaut Neil A. Armstrong, Apollo 11 commander, participates in simulation training in preparation for the scheduled lunar landing mission. He is in the Apollo Lunar Module Mission SImulator in the Kennedy Space Center's Flight Crew Training Building.

  2. Phobos Environment Model and Regolith Simulant for MMX Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyamoto, H.; Niihara, T.; Wada, K.; Ogawa, K.; Baresi, N.; Abell, Paul A.; Asphaug, E.; Britt, D.; Dodbiba, G.; Fujita, T.; hide

    2018-01-01

    Phobos and Deimos, the two moons of Mars, are considered to be scientifically important and potential human mission's target. Martian Moons eXplorer (MMX) is the JAXA's mission to explore Phobos (and/or Deimos), which is scheduled to be launched in 2024. The main spacecraft of MMX will perform in-situ observations of both Phobos and Deimos, land on one of them (most likely, Phobos), and bring samples back to Earth. Small landing modules may be included in the mission as for the Hayabusa-2 mission. The designs of both the landing and sampling devices depend largely on the surface conditions of the target body and on how this surface reacts to an external action in the low gravity conditions of the target. Thus, the Landing Operation Working Team (LOWT) of MMX, which is composed of both scientists and engineers, is studying Phobos' surface based on previous observations and theoretical/experimental considerations. Though engineering motivation initiated this activity, the results will be extremely useful for scientific purposes.

  3. Lunar Map Catalog

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Lunar Map Catalog includes various maps of the moon's surface, including Apollo landing sites; earthside, farside, and polar charts; photography index maps; zone...

  4. Consolidated Lunar Atlas

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Consolidated Lunar Atlas is a collection of the best photographic images of the moon, including low-oblique photography, full-moon photography, and tabular and...

  5. Comparison of upright LBPP and supine LBNP in terms of cardiovascular and biomechanical parameters to simulate 1/6-G (lunar gravity) and 3/8-G (Martian gravity) activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlabs, Thomas; Rosales-Velderrain, Armando; Ruckstuhl, Heidi; Richardson, Sara E.; Hargens, Alan

    Background: Missions of astronauts to Moon and Mars may be planned in the future. From over 40 years of manned spaceflight it is known that the human body experiences cardiovascular and musculoskeletal losses and a decrease in aerobic fitness while exposed to reduced gravity. Because future missions will be much longer than before, further research is needed to improve Earth-based simulations of reduced gravity. Among others, two methods are capable of simu-lating fractional gravity on Earth: upright Lower Body Positive Pressure (LBPP) and supine Lower Body Negative Pressure (LBNP). No previous study has directly compared these two methods to determine which method is better suited to simulate both the biomechanical and cardiovascular responses of performing activity in lunar (1/6-G) and Martian (3/8-G) gravities. Taken previous studies into account and considering the fact that supine posture is closer to the established 10 head-up-tilt lunar simulation, we hypothesized that exercise performed in supine LBNP better simulates the cardiovascular conditions that occur in lunar and Martian gravities. Methods: 12 healthy normal subjects underwent a protocol consisting of resting and walking (0.25 Froude) with LBNP and LBPP. Each protocol was performed in simulated 1/6-G and 3/8-G. Heart-rate (HR), blood pressure, oxygen consumption (VO2), vertical component of the ground reaction force, comfort of the subject and perceived exertion of the subject (Borg Scale) were assessed. The obtained parameters were compared to predicted values for lunar and Martian gravity conditions in order to determine the method that shows the best level of agreement. Results: There was no difference in gait parameters between LBPP and LBNP simulation of lunar and Martian gravity (cadence: P=0.427, normalized stride length: P=0.373, duty fac-tor: P=0.302, and normalized vertical peak force (P=0.064). Mean blood pressure (P=0.398), comfort (P=0.832) and BORG rating (P=0.186) did not differ

  6. Lunar Advanced Volatile Analysis Subsystem: Pressure Transducer Trade Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Edward Shinuk

    2017-01-01

    In Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) is a key factor in paving the way for the future of human space exploration. The ability to harvest resources on foreign astronomical objects to produce consumables and propellant offers potential reduction in mission cost and risk. Through previous missions, the existence of water ice at the poles of the moon has been identified, however the feasibility of water extraction for resources remains unanswered. The Resource Prospector (RP) mission is currently in development to provide ground truth, and will enable us to characterize the distribution of water at one of the lunar poles. Regolith & Environment Science and Oxygen & Lunar Volatile Extraction (RESOLVE) is the primary payload on RP that will be used in conjunction with a rover. RESOLVE contains multiple instruments for systematically identifying the presence of water. The main process involves the use of two systems within RESOLVE: the Oxygen Volatile Extraction Node (OVEN) and Lunar Advanced Volatile Analysis (LAVA). Within the LAVA subsystem, there are multiple calculations that depend on accurate pressure readings. One of the most important instances where pressure transducers (PT) are used is for calculating the number of moles in a gas transfer from the OVEN subsystem. As a critical component of the main process, a mixture of custom and commercial off the shelf (COTS) PTs are currently being tested in the expected operating environment to eventually down select an option for integrated testing in the LAVA engineering test unit (ETU).

  7. Engineering design constraints of the lunar surface environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrison, D. A.

    1992-01-01

    Living and working on the lunar surface will be difficult. Design of habitats, machines, tools, and operational scenarios in order to allow maximum flexibility in human activity will require paying attention to certain constraints imposed by conditions at the surface and the characteristics of lunar material. Primary design drivers for habitat, crew health and safety, and crew equipment are: ionizing radiation, the meteoroid flux, and the thermal environment. Secondary constraints for engineering derive from: the physical and chemical properties of lunar surface materials, rock distributions and regolith thicknesses, topography, electromagnetic properties, and seismicity. Protection from ionizing radiation is essential for crew health and safety. The total dose acquired by a crew member will be the sum of the dose acquired during EVA time (when shielding will be least) plus the dose acquired during time spent in the habitat (when shielding will be maximum). Minimizing the dose acquired in the habitat extends the time allowable for EVA's before a dose limit is reached. Habitat shielding is enabling, and higher precision in predicting secondary fluxes produced in shielding material would be desirable. Means for minimizing dose during a solar flare event while on extended EVA will be essential. Early warning of the onset of flare activity (at least a half-hour is feasible) will dictate the time available to take mitigating steps. Warning capability affects design of rovers (or rover tools) and site layout. Uncertainty in solar flare timing is a design constraint that points to the need for quickly accessible or constructible safe havens.

  8. Multivariate statistical analysis - an application to lunar materials

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Deb, M.

    1978-01-01

    The compositional characteristics of clinopyroxenes and spinels - two minerals considered to be very useful in deciphering lunar history, have been studied using the multivariate statistical method of principal component analysis. The mineral-chemical data used are from certain lunar rocks and fines collected by Apollo 11, 12, 14 and 15 and Luna 16 and 20 missions, representing mainly the mare basalts and also non-mare basalts, breccia and rock fragments from the highland regions, in which a large number of these minerals have been analyzed. The correlations noted in the mineral compositions, indicating substitutional relationships, have been interpreted on the basis of available crystal-chemical and petrological informations. Compositional trends for individual specimens have been delineated and compared by producing ''principal latent vector diagrams''. The percent variance of the principal components denoted by the eigenvalues, have been evaluated in terms of the crystallization history of the samples. Some of the major petrogenetic implications of this study concern the role of early formed cumulate phases in the near-surface fractionation of mare basalts, mixing of mineral compositions in the highland regolith and the subsolidus reduction trends in lunar spinels. (auth.)

  9. RESOLVE: Bridge between early lunar ISRU and science objectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, G.; Sanders, G.; Larson, W.; Johnson, K.

    2007-08-01

    THE NEED FOR RESOURCES: When mankind returns to the moon, there will be an aspect of the architecture that will totally change how we explore the solar system. We will take the first steps towards breaking our reliance on Earth supplied consumables by extracting resources from planetary bodies. Our first efforts in this area, known as In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU), will be to extract the abundant oxygen found in the lunar regolith. But the "holy grail" of lunar ISRU will be finding an exploitable source of lunar hydrogen. If we can find a source of extractable hydrogen, it would provide a foundation for true independence from Earth. With in-situ hydrogen (or water) and oxygen we can produce many of the major consumables needed to operate a lunar outpost. We would have water to drink, oxygen to breath, as well as rocket propellants and fuel cell reagents to enable extended access and operations on the moon. These items make up a huge percentage of the mass launched from the Earth. Producing them in-situ would significantly reduce the cost of operating a lunar outpost while increasing payload availability for science. PROSPECTING: The Lunar Prospector found evidence of elevated hydrogen at the lunar poles, and measurements made at these locations from the Clementine mission bistatic radar have been interpreted as correlating to water/ice concentrations. At the South Pole, there is reasonably strong correlation between the elevated areas of hydrogen and permanently shadowed craters. However, there is considerable debate on the form and concentration of this hydrogen since the orbiting satellites had limited resolution and their data can be interpreted in different ways. The varying interpretations are based on differing opinions and theories of lunar environment, evolution, and cometary bombardment within the lunar Science community. The only way to truly answer this question from both a Science and resource availability perspective is to go to the lunar poles

  10. Transmission Electron Microscopy of Itokawa Regolith Grains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keller, Lindsay P.; Berger, E. L.

    2013-01-01

    Introduction: In a remarkable engineering achievement, the JAXA space agency successfully recovered the Hayabusa space-craft in June 2010, following a non-optimal encounter and sur-face sampling mission to asteroid 25143 Itokawa. These are the first direct samples ever obtained and returned from the surface of an asteroid. The Hayabusa samples thus present a special op-portunity to directly investigate the evolution of asteroidal sur-faces, from the development of the regolith to the study of the effects of space weathering. Here we report on our preliminary TEM measurements on two Itokawa samples. Methods: We were allocated particles RA-QD02-0125 and RA-QD02-0211. Both particles were embedded in low viscosity epoxy and thin sections were prepared using ultramicrotomy. High resolution images and electron diffraction data were ob-tained using a JEOL 2500SE 200 kV field-emission scanning-transmission electron microscope. Quantitative maps and anal-yses were obtained using a Thermo thin-window energy-dispersive x-ray (EDX) spectrometer. Results: Both particles are olivine-rich (Fo70) with µm-sized inclusions of FeS and have microstructurally complex rims. Par-ticle RA-QD02-0125 is rounded and has numerous sub-µm grains attached to its surface including FeS, albite, olivine, and rare melt droplets. Solar flare tracks have not been observed, but the particle is surrounded by a continuous 50 nm thick, stuctur-ally disordered rim that is compositionally similar to the core of the grain. One of the surface adhering grains is pyrrhotite show-ing a S-depleted rim (8-10 nm thick) with nanophase Fe metal grains (<5 nm) decorating the outermost surface. The pyrrhotite displays a complex superstructure in its core that is absent in the S-depleted rim. Particle RA-QD02-0211 contains solar flare particle tracks (2x109 cm-2) and shows a structurally disordered rim 100 nm thick. The track density corresponds to a surface exposure of 103-104 years based on the track production rate

  11. Lunar Sample Compendium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Charles

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of the Lunar Sample Compendium will be to inform scientists, astronauts and the public about the various lunar samples that have been returned from the Moon. This Compendium will be organized rock by rock in the manor of a catalog, but will not be as comprehensive, nor as complete, as the various lunar sample catalogs that are available. Likewise, this Compendium will not duplicate the various excellent books and reviews on the subject of lunar samples (Cadogen 1981, Heiken et al. 1991, Papike et al. 1998, Warren 2003, Eugster 2003). However, it is thought that an online Compendium, such as this, will prove useful to scientists proposing to study individual lunar samples and should help provide backup information for lunar sample displays. This Compendium will allow easy access to the scientific literature by briefly summarizing the significant findings of each rock along with the documentation of where the detailed scientific data are to be found. In general, discussion and interpretation of the results is left to the formal reviews found in the scientific literature. An advantage of this Compendium will be that it can be updated, expanded and corrected as need be.

  12. Closer look at lunar volcanism

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vaniman, D.T.; Heiken, G.; Taylor, G.J.

    1984-01-01

    Although the American Apollo and Soviet Luna missions concentrated on mare basalt samples, major questions remain about lunar volcanism. Lunar field work will be indispensable for resolving the scientific questions about ages, compositions, and eruption processes of lunar volcanism. From a utilitarian standpoint, a better knowledge of lunar volcanism will also yield profitable returns in lunar base construction (e.g., exploitation of rille or lava-tube structures) and in access to materials such as volatile elements, pure glass, or ilmenite for lunar industry

  13. Dusty plasmas over the Moon: theory research in support of the upcoming lunar missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popel, Sergey; Zelenyi, Lev; Zakharov, Alexander; Izvekova, Yulia; Dolnikov, Gennady; Dubinskii, Andrey; Kopnin, Sergey; Golub, Anatoly

    The future Russian lunar missions Luna 25 and Luna 27 are planned to be equipped with instruments for direct detection of nano- and microscale dust particles and determination of plasma properties over the surface of the Moon. Lunar dust over the Moon is usually considered as a part of a dusty plasma system. Here, we present the main our theory results concerning the lunar dusty plasmas. We start with the description of the observational data on dust particles on and over the surface of the Moon. We show that the size distribution of dust on the lunar surface is in a good agreement with the Kolmogorov distribution, which is the size distribution of particles in the case of multiple crushing. We discuss the role of adhesion which has been identified as a significant force in the dust particle launching process. We evaluate the adhesive force for lunar dust particles with taking into account the roughness and adsorbed molecular layers. We show that dust particle launching can be explained if the dust particles rise at a height of about dozens of nanometers owing to some processes. This is enough for the particles to acquire charges sufficient for the dominance of the electrostatic force over the gravitational and adhesive forces. The reasons for the separation of the dust particles from the surface of the Moon are, in particular, their heating by solar radiation and cooling. We consider migration of free protons in regolith from the viewpoint of the photoemission properties of the lunar soil. Finally, we develop a model of dusty plasma system over the Moon and show that it includes charged dust, photoelectrons, and electrons and ions of the solar wind. We determine the distributions of the photoelectrons and find the characteristics of the dust which rise over the lunar regolith. We show that there are no significant constraints on the Moon landing sites for future lunar missions that will study dusty plasmas in the surface layer of the Moon. We discuss also waves in

  14. Three-Dimensional (3D) Additive Construction: Printing with Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsoras, Alexandra

    2013-01-01

    Three dimensional (3D) printing is a new and booming topic in many realms of research and engineering technology. When it comes to space science and aerospace engineering, it can be useful in numerous ways. As humans travel deeper into space and farther from Earth, sending large quantities of needed supplies from Earth for a mission becomes astronomically expensive and less plausible. In order to reach further to new places, In Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU), a project that pushes for technologies to use materials already present in the destination's environment, is necessary. By using materials already available in space such as regolith from the Moon, Mars, or an asteroid's surface, fewer materials need to be brought into space on a launched vehicle. This allows a vehicle to be filled with more necessary supplies for a deep space mission that may not be found in space, like food and fuel. This project's main objective was to develop a 3D printer that uses regolith to "print" large structures, such as a dome, to be used as a heat shield upon a vehicle's reentry into the atmosphere or even a habitat. 3D printing is a growing technology that uses many different methods to mix, heat, and mold a material into a specific shape. In order to heat the regolith enough to stick together into a solid shape, it must be sintered at each layer of material that is laid. Sintering is a process that heats and compresses a powdered material until it fuses into a solid, which requires a lot of energy input. As an alternative, a polymer can be mixed with the regolith before or as it is sent to the 3D printer head to be placed in the specific shape. The addition of the polymer, which melts and binds at much lower temperatures than sintering temperatures, greatly decreases the required heating temperature and energy input. The main task of the project was to identify a functional material for the printer. The first step was to find a miscible. polymer/solvent solution. This solution

  15. Exploring Fingerprints of the Extreme Thermoacidophile Metallosphaera sedula Grown on Synthetic Martian Regolith Materials as the Sole Energy Sources

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Denise Kölbl

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The biology of metal transforming microorganisms is of a fundamental and applied importance for our understanding of past and present biogeochemical processes on Earth and in the Universe. The extreme thermoacidophile Metallosphaera sedula is a metal mobilizing archaeon, which thrives in hot acid environments (optimal growth at 74°C and pH 2.0 and utilizes energy from the oxidation of reduced metal inorganic sources. These characteristics of M. sedula make it an ideal organism to further our knowledge of the biogeochemical processes of possible life on extraterrestrial planetary bodies. Exploring the viability and metal extraction capacity of M. sedula living on and interacting with synthetic extraterrestrial minerals, we show that M. sedula utilizes metals trapped in the Martian regolith simulants (JSC Mars 1A; P-MRS; S-MRS; MRS07/52 as the sole energy sources. The obtained set of microbiological and mineralogical data suggests that M. sedula actively colonizes synthetic Martian regolith materials and releases free soluble metals. The surface of bioprocessed Martian regolith simulants is analyzed for specific mineralogical fingerprints left upon M. sedula growth. The obtained results provide insights of biomining of extraterrestrial material as well as of the detection of biosignatures implementing in life search missions.

  16. Exploring Fingerprints of the Extreme Thermoacidophile Metallosphaera sedula Grown on Synthetic Martian Regolith Materials as the Sole Energy Sources.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kölbl, Denise; Pignitter, Marc; Somoza, Veronika; Schimak, Mario P; Strbak, Oliver; Blazevic, Amir; Milojevic, Tetyana

    2017-01-01

    The biology of metal transforming microorganisms is of a fundamental and applied importance for our understanding of past and present biogeochemical processes on Earth and in the Universe. The extreme thermoacidophile Metallosphaera sedula is a metal mobilizing archaeon, which thrives in hot acid environments (optimal growth at 74°C and pH 2.0) and utilizes energy from the oxidation of reduced metal inorganic sources. These characteristics of M. sedula make it an ideal organism to further our knowledge of the biogeochemical processes of possible life on extraterrestrial planetary bodies. Exploring the viability and metal extraction capacity of M. sedula living on and interacting with synthetic extraterrestrial minerals, we show that M. sedula utilizes metals trapped in the Martian regolith simulants (JSC Mars 1A; P-MRS; S-MRS; MRS07/52) as the sole energy sources. The obtained set of microbiological and mineralogical data suggests that M. sedula actively colonizes synthetic Martian regolith materials and releases free soluble metals. The surface of bioprocessed Martian regolith simulants is analyzed for specific mineralogical fingerprints left upon M. sedula growth. The obtained results provide insights of biomining of extraterrestrial material as well as of the detection of biosignatures implementing in life search missions.

  17. Component and System Sensitivity Considerations for Design of a Lunar ISRU Oxygen Production Plant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linne, Diane L.; Gokoglu, Suleyman; Hegde, Uday G.; Balasubramaniam, Ramaswamy; Santiago-Maldonado, Edgardo

    2009-01-01

    Component and system sensitivities of some design parameters of ISRU system components are analyzed. The differences between terrestrial and lunar excavation are discussed, and a qualitative comparison of large and small excavators is started. The effect of excavator size on the size of the ISRU plant's regolith hoppers is presented. Optimum operating conditions of both hydrogen and carbothermal reduction reactors are explored using recently developed analytical models. Design parameters such as batch size, conversion fraction, and maximum particle size are considered for a hydrogen reduction reactor while batch size, conversion fraction, number of melt zones, and methane flow rate are considered for a carbothermal reduction reactor. For both reactor types the effect of reactor operation on system energy and regolith delivery requirements is presented.

  18. Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, 20th, Houston, TX, Mar. 13-17, 1989, Proceedings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sharpton, V.L.; Ryder, G.

    1990-01-01

    Topics discussed include the petrology and geochemistry of the moon, the geology of the moon, lunar regolith processes and resources, the petrology and geochemistry of achondrites, comets and interplanetary dust, shock and terrestrial cratering, the geology of Mars, and the geology of Venus. Papers are presented on silicate liquid immiscibility in isothermal crystallization experiments; highly evolved and ultramafic lithologies from Apollo 14 soils; the relationship between orbital, earth-based, and sample data for lunar landing sites; and the volcanotectonic evolution of Mare Frigoris. Attention is also given to glass variants and multiple HASP trends in Apollo 14 regolith breccias, the characterization of lunar ilmenite resources, the U-Th-Pb systematics of the Estherville mesosiderite, and the extraterrestrial halogen and sulfur contents of the stratosphere. Other papers are on argon-40/argon-39 dating of impact craters; the outliers of dust along the southern margin of the Tharsis region, Mars; and the geology of southern Guinevere Planitia, Venus, based on analyses of Goldstone radar data

  19. Hazard Detection Software for Lunar Landing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huertas, Andres; Johnson, Andrew E.; Werner, Robert A.; Montgomery, James F.

    2011-01-01

    The Autonomous Landing and Hazard Avoidance Technology (ALHAT) Project is developing a system for safe and precise manned lunar landing that involves novel sensors, but also specific algorithms. ALHAT has selected imaging LIDAR (light detection and ranging) as the sensing modality for onboard hazard detection because imaging LIDARs can rapidly generate direct measurements of the lunar surface elevation from high altitude. Then, starting with the LIDAR-based Hazard Detection and Avoidance (HDA) algorithm developed for Mars Landing, JPL has developed a mature set of HDA software for the manned lunar landing problem. Landing hazards exist everywhere on the Moon, and many of the more desirable landing sites are near the most hazardous terrain, so HDA is needed to autonomously and safely land payloads over much of the lunar surface. The HDA requirements used in the ALHAT project are to detect hazards that are 0.3 m tall or higher and slopes that are 5 or greater. Steep slopes, rocks, cliffs, and gullies are all hazards for landing and, by computing the local slope and roughness in an elevation map, all of these hazards can be detected. The algorithm in this innovation is used to measure slope and roughness hazards. In addition to detecting these hazards, the HDA capability also is able to find a safe landing site free of these hazards for a lunar lander with diameter .15 m over most of the lunar surface. This software includes an implementation of the HDA algorithm, software for generating simulated lunar terrain maps for testing, hazard detection performance analysis tools, and associated documentation. The HDA software has been deployed to Langley Research Center and integrated into the POST II Monte Carlo simulation environment. The high-fidelity Monte Carlo simulations determine the required ground spacing between LIDAR samples (ground sample distances) and the noise on the LIDAR range measurement. This simulation has also been used to determine the effect of

  20. Astronauts Young and Duke participate in training with Lunar Roving Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    1972-01-01

    Astronauts John W. Young (right) and Charles M. Duke Jr., participate in simulation training with the Lunar Roving Vehicle (LRV) during Apollo 16 pre-launch activity at the Kennedy Space Center. All systems on the LRV-2 were activated and checked for trouble-free operation during the simulations. Young is the Apollo 16 commander; and Duke is the lunar module pilot.

  1. Lunar geophysics, geodesy, and dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, J. G.; Dickey, J. O.

    2002-01-01

    Experience with the dynamics and data analyses for earth and moon reveals both similarities and differences. Analysis of Lunar Laser Ranging (LLR) data provides information on the lunar orbit, rotation, solid-body tides, and retroreflector locations.

  2. The Preliminary Processing and Geological Interpretation of Lunar Penetrating Radar Channel-1 Data from Chang'E-3

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Y.; Zhu, P.; Zhao, N.; Guo, S.; Xiao, L.; Xiao, Z.

    2014-12-01

    This is the first time to obtain the subsurface profiles using the lunar penetrating radar (LPR) on the Moon surface. Two types of antennas, channel-1 and channel-2, with different resolutions were equipped on the LPR, which detected the lunar subsurface structure with low frequency and the thickness of regolith with high frequency, respectively. We focus on the study of the lunar subsurface structure using channel-1 data. Considering the propagation characteristics of radar wave, the processing of amplitude compensation and filtering are applied to improve the imaging quality, and the processed profile clearly represents deeper than 300 meters of layered information. Based on the geological background around landing site, we present the preliminary geological interpretation for the lunar subsurface structure. More than 5 obvious reflecting events should be concerned along the track of the Yutu rover, which infer different lava sequences, including the Eratosthenian basalts, paleo-regolith formed between Eratosthenian and Imbrium, and multistage infilled lavas formed inter-layers among the Imbrium basalts.

  3. Space Plasma Ion Processing of Ilmenite in the Lunar Soil: Insights from In-Situ TEM Ion Irradiation Experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christoffersen, R.; Keller, L. P.

    2007-01-01

    Space weathering on the moon and asteroids results largely from the alteration of the outer surfaces of regolith grains by the combined effects of solar ion irradiation and other processes that include deposition of impact or sputter-derived vapors. Although no longer considered the sole driver of space weathering, solar ion irradiation remains a key part of the space weathering puzzle, and quantitative data on its effects on regolith minerals are still in short supply. For the lunar regolith, previous transmission electron microscope (TEM) studies performed by ourselves and others have uncovered altered rims on ilmenite (FeTiO3) grains that point to this phase as a unique "witness plate" for unraveling nanoscale space weathering processes. Most notably, the radiation processed portions of these ilmenite rims consistently have a crystalline structure, in contrast to radiation damaged rims on regolith silicates that are characteristically amorphous. While this has tended to support informal designation of ilmenite as a "radiation resistant" regolith mineral, there are to date no experimental data that directly and quantitatively compare ilmenite s response to ion radiation relative to lunar silicates. Such data are needed because the radiation processed rims on ilmenite grains, although crystalline, are microstructurally and chemically complex, and exhibit changes linked to the formation of nanophase Fe metal, a key space weathering process. We report here the first ion radiation processing study of ilmenite performed by in-situ means using the Intermediate Voltage Electron Microscope- Tandem Irradiation facility (IVEM-Tandem) at Argonne National Laboratory. The capability of this facility for performing real time TEM observations of samples concurrent with ion irradiation makes it uniquely suited for studying the dose-dependence of amorphization and other changes in irradiated samples.

  4. Long-wavelength Radar Studies of the Lunar Maria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Bruce A.; Hawke, B. Ray; Thompson, Thomas W.

    1995-01-01

    Radar measurements at 70 cm and 7.5 m wavelengths provide insight into the structure and chemical properties of the upper 5-100 m of the lunar regolith and crust. Past work has identified a number of anomalous regions and changes in echo strength, some attributed to differences in titanium content. There has been little opportunity, however, to compare calibrated long-wavelength backscatter among different units or to theoretical model results. We combine recent high-resolution (3-5 km) 70-cm radar data for the nearside with earlier calibrated full-disk observations to provide a reasonable estimate of the true lunar backscatter coefficient. These data are tested against models for quasi-specular scattering from the surface, echoes from a buried substrate, and Mie scattering from surface and buried rocks. We find that 70 cm echoes likely arise from Mie scattering by distributed rocks within the soil, consistent with earlier hypotheses. Returns from a buried substrate would provide a plausible fit to the observations only if the regolith depth were 3 m or less and varied little across the maria. Depolarized echoes are due to some combination of single and multiple scattering events, but it appears that single scattering alone could account for the observed echo power, based on comparisons with terrestrial rocky surfaces. Backscatter strength from the regolith is most strongly affected by the loss tangent, whose variation with mineral content is still poorly defined. We compared the backscatter values for the mare deposits to the oxide contents inferred from spectral ratio methods, and found that in general the unit boundaries evident in radar images closely follow those seen in color difference images. The 70-cm data are not well correlated with TiO2 values found using the Charette relationship nor with Fe abundances derived from Clementine observations. The lack of a relationship between radar echo and Fe content is reasonable given the distribution of iron among

  5. Ion microprobe analyses of aluminous lunar glasses - A test of the 'rock type' hypothesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, C., Jr.

    1978-01-01

    Previous soil survey investigations found that there are natural groupings of glass compositions in lunar soils and that the average major element composition of some of these groupings is the same at widely separated lunar landing sites. This led soil survey enthusiasts to promote the hypothesis that the average composition of glass groupings represents the composition of primary lunar 'rock types'. In this investigation the trace element composition of numerous aluminous glass particles was determined by the ion microprobe method as a test of the above mentioned 'rock type' hypothesis. It was found that within any grouping of aluminous lunar glasses by major element content, there is considerable scatter in the refractory trace element content. In addition, aluminous glasses grouped by major elements were found to have different average trace element contents at different sites (Apollo 15, 16 and Luna 20). This evidence argues that natural groupings in glass compositions are determined by regolith processes and may not represent the composition of primary lunar 'rock types'.

  6. Characterization of Volatiles Loss from Soil Samples at Lunar Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinhenz, Julie; Smith, Jim; Roush, Ted; Colaprete, Anthony; Zacny, Kris; Paulsen, Gale; Wang, Alex; Paz, Aaron

    2017-01-01

    Resource Prospector Integrated Thermal Vacuum Test Program A series of ground based dirty thermal vacuum tests are being conducted to better understand the subsurface sampling operations for RP Volatiles loss during sampling operations Hardware performance Sample removal and transfer Concept of operationsInstrumentation5 test campaigns over 5 years have been conducted with RP hardware with advancing hardware designs and additional RP subsystems Volatiles sampling 4 years Using flight-forward regolith sampling hardware, empirically determine volatile retention at lunar-relevant conditions Use data to improve theoretical predictions Determine driving variables for retention Bound water loss potential to define measurement uncertainties. The main goal of this talk is to introduce you to our approach to characterizing volatiles loss for RP. Introduce the facility and its capabilities Overview of the RP hardware used in integrated testing (most recent iteration) Summarize the test variables used thus farReview a sample of the results.

  7. Lunar and Vesta Web Portals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Law, E.; JPL Luna Mapping; Modeling Project Team

    2015-06-01

    The Lunar Mapping and Modeling Project offers Lunar Mapping and Modeling Portal (http://lmmp.nasa.gov) and Vesta Trek Portal (http://vestatrek.jpl.nasa.gov) providing interactive visualization and analysis tools to enable users to access mapped Lunar and Vesta data products.

  8. A lunar polar expedition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dowling, Richard; Staehle, Robert L.; Svitek, Tomas

    1992-09-01

    Advanced exploration and development in harsh environments require mastery of basic human survival skill. Expeditions into the lethal climates of Earth's polar regions offer useful lessons for tommorrow's lunar pioneers. In Arctic and Antarctic exploration, 'wintering over' was a crucial milestone. The ability to establish a supply base and survive months of polar cold and darkness made extensive travel and exploration possible. Because of the possibility of near-constant solar illumination, the lunar polar regions, unlike Earth's may offer the most hospitable site for habitation. The World Space Foundation is examining a scenario for establishing a five-person expeditionary team on the lunar north pole for one year. This paper is a status report on a point design addressing site selection, transportation, power, and life support requirements.

  9. Endogenous Lunar Volatiles

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCubbin, F. M.; Liu, Y.; Barnes, J. J.; Boyce, J. W.; Day, J. M. D.; Elardo, S. M.; Hui, H.; Magna, T.; Ni, P.; Tartese, R.; hide

    2017-01-01

    The chapter will begin with an introduction that defines magmatic volatiles (e.g., H, F, Cl, S) versus geochemical volatiles (e.g., K, Rb, Zn). We will discuss our approach of understanding both types of volatiles in lunar samples and lay the ground work for how we will determine the overall volatile budget of the Moon. We will then discuss the importance of endogenous volatiles in shaping the "Newer Views of the Moon", specifically how endogenous volatiles feed forward into processes such as the origin of the Moon, magmatic differentiation, volcanism, and secondary processes during surface and crustal interactions. After the introduction, we will include a re-view/synthesis on the current state of 1) apatite compositions (volatile abundances and isotopic compositions); 2) nominally anhydrous mineral phases (moderately to highly volatile); 3) volatile (moderately to highly volatile) abundances in and isotopic compositions of lunar pyroclastic glass beads; 4) volatile (moderately to highly volatile) abundances in and isotopic compositions of lunar basalts; 5) volatile (moderately to highly volatile) abundances in and isotopic compositions of melt inclusions; and finally 6) experimental constraints on mineral-melt partitioning of moderately to highly volatile elements under lunar conditions. We anticipate that each section will summarize results since 2007 and focus on new results published since the 2015 Am Min review paper on lunar volatiles [9]. The next section will discuss how to use sample abundances of volatiles to understand the source region and potential caveats in estimating source abundances of volatiles. The following section will include our best estimates of volatile abundances and isotopic compositions (where permitted by available data) for each volatile element of interest in a number of important lunar reservoirs, including the crust, mantle, KREEP, and bulk Moon. The final section of the chapter will focus upon future work, outstanding questions

  10. Development of Compact, Modular Lunar Heat Flow Probes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagihara, S.; Zacny, K.; Hedlund, M.; Taylor, P. T.

    2014-01-01

    Geothermal heat flow measurements are a high priority for the future lunar geophysical network missions recommended by the latest Decadal Survey and previously the International Lunar Network. Because the lander for such a mission will be relatively small, the heat flow instrumentation must be a low-mass and low-power system. The instrument needs to measure both thermal gradient and thermal conductivity of the regolith penetrated. It also needs to be capable of excavating a deep enough hole (approx. 3 m) to avoid the effect of potential long-term changes of the surface thermal environment. The recently developed pneumatic excavation system can largely meet the low-power, low-mass, and the depth requirements. The system utilizes a stem which winds out of a pneumatically driven reel and pushes its conical tip into the regolith. Simultaneously, gas jets, emitted from the cone tip, loosen and blow away the soil. The thermal sensors consist of resistance temperature detectors (RTDs) embedded on the stem and an insitu thermal conductivity probe attached to the cone tip. The thermal conductivity probe consists of a short 'needle' (2.4-mm diam. and 15- to 20-mm length) that contains a platinum RTD wrapped in a coil of heater wire. During a deployment, when the penetrating cone reaches a desired depth, it stops blowing gas, and the stem pushes the needle into the yet-to-be excavated, undisturbed bottom soil. Then, it begins heating and monitors the temperature. Thermal conductivity of the soil can determined from the rate of temperature increase with time. When the measurement is complete, the system resumes excavation until it reaches the next targeted depth.

  11. Asymmetric Early Crust-Building Magmatism on the Lunar Nearside Due to KREEP-Induced Melting Point Depression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elardo, S. M.; Shearer, C. K.; McCuddin, F. M.

    2018-01-01

    The lunar magnesian-suite, or Mg-suite, is a series of ancient plutonic rocks from the lunar crust with ages and compositions indicating that they represent crust-building magmatism occurring immediately after the end of magma ocean crystallization. Samples of the Mg-suite were found at every Apollo landing site except 11 and ubiquitously have geochemical characteristics indicating the involvement of KREEP in their petrogenesis. This observation has led to the suggestion that the presence of the KREEP reservoir under the lunar nearside was responsible for this episode of crust building. The lack of any readily identifiable Mg-suite rocks in meteoritic regolith breccias sourced from outside the Procellarum KREEP Terrane (PKT) seemingly supports this interpretation.

  12. Extracting lunar dust parameters from image charge signals produced by the Lunar Dust Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanley, J.; Kempf, S.; Horanyi, M.; Szalay, J.

    2015-12-01

    The Lunar Dust Experiment (LDEX) onboard the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) is an impact ionization dust detector used to characterize the lunar dust exosphere generated by the impacts of large interplanetary particles and meteor streams (Horanyi et al., 2015). In addition to the mass and speed of these lofted particles, LDEX is sensitive to their charge. The resulting signatures of impact events therefore provide valuable information about not only the ambient plasma environment, but also the speed vectors of these dust grains. Here, impact events produced from LDEX's calibration at the Dust Accelerator Laboratory are analyzed using an image charge model derived from the electrostatic simulation program, Coulomb. We show that parameters such as dust grain speed, size, charge, and position of entry into LDEX can be recovered and applied to data collected during LADEE's seven-month mission.

  13. Unravelling regolith material types using Mg/Al and K/Al plot to support field regolith identification in the savannah regions of NW Ghana, West Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arhin, Emmanuel; Zango, Saeed M.

    2015-12-01

    The XRF analytical method was used to measure the weight % of the major oxides in regolith samples. The metal weight % of Mg, K and Al were calculated from their oxides and were normalised relative to immobile Al calculated from its oxide. The plot of Mg/Al and K/Al identified the regolith of the study area to consist of 137 transported clays, 4 ferruginous sediments or ferricrete, 2 lateritic duricrust and 4 saprolites. Surface regolith that had undergone secondary transformation and shows compositional overlaps were 4 transported clays with Fe-oxide impregnation may be referred to as nodular laterite and 5 ferruginous saprolites. The variable regolith materials features identified from the 154 samples enabled the characterisation and identification of the different sample materials because an overprint of bedrock geochemistry is reflected in the regolith. Plot of Mg/Al and K/Al highlighted the compositional variability of the regolith samples and refute the notion of the homogeneity of all the sampled materials in the area. The study thus recognized Mg/Al versus K/Al plots to be used in supporting field identification of regolith mapping units particularly in complex regolith terrains of savannah regions of Ghana and in similar areas where geochemical exploration surveys are being carried out under cover.

  14. Isotopic Evidence for Multi-stage Cosmic-ray Exposure Histories of Lunar Meteorites: Long Residence on the Moon and Short Transition to the Earth

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hidaka, Hiroshi; Sakuma, Keisuke; Nishiizumi, Kunihiko; Yoneda, Shigekazu

    2017-01-01

    It is known that most lunar meteorites have complicated cosmic-ray exposure experiences on the Moon and in space. In this study, cosmic-ray irradiation histories of six lunar meteorites, Dhofar 489, Northwest Africa 032 (NWA 032), NWA 479, NWA 482, NWA 2995, and NWA 5000, were characterized from neutron-captured isotopic shifts of Sm and Gd, and from the abundances of long-lived cosmogenic radionuclides like 10 Be, 26 Al, 36 Cl, and 41 Ca. Sm and Gd isotopic data of all of six meteorites show significant isotopic shifts of 149 Sm– 150 Sm and 157 Gd– 158 Gd caused by accumulation of neutron capture reactions due to cosmic-ray irradiation, corresponding to the neutron fluences of (1.3–9.6) × 10 16 n cm −2 . In particular, very large Sm and Gd isotopic shifts of NWA 482 are over those of a lunar regolith 70002, having the largest isotopic shifts among the Apollo regolith samples, corresponding to cosmic-ray exposure duration over 800 million years in the lunar surface (2 π irradiation). Meanwhile, the concentrations of cosmogenic radionuclides for individual six meteorites show the short irradiation time less than one million years as their bodies in space (4 π irradiation). Our data also support the results of previous studies, revealing that most of lunar meteorites have long exposure ages at shallow depths on the Moon and short transit times from the Moon to the Earth.

  15. Regolith transport in the Dry Valleys of Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Putkonen, J.; Rosales, M.; Turpen, N.; Morgan, D.; Balco, G.; Donaldson, M.

    2007-01-01

    The stability of ground surface and preservation of landforms that record past events and environments is of great importance as the geologic and climatic history is evaluated in the Dry Valleys of Antarctica. Currently little is known about the regolith transport that tends to eradicate and confound this record and regolith transport is itself an environmental indicator. Based on analyses of repeat photographs, soil traps, and pebble transport distances, it was found that there is a large spatial variation in topographic diffusivities at least in the annual basis and that counter intuitively the highest topographic diffusivities are found in the alpine valleys that are located farther inland from the coast where the lowest topographic diffusivities were recorded. An average topographic diffusivity for the Dry Valleys was determined to be 10M-5–10-4 m2

  16. Summary of the results from the Lunar Dust Experiment (LDEX) onboard the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment (LADEE) Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horanyi, Mihaly

    2016-07-01

    The Lunar Dust Experiment (LDEX) onboard the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) mission (9/2013 - 4/2014) discovered a permanently present dust cloud engulfing the Moon. The size, velocity, and density distributions of the dust particles are consistent with ejecta clouds generated from the continual bombardment of the lunar surface by sporadic interplanetary dust particles. Intermittent density enhancements were observed during several of the annual meteoroid streams, especially during the Geminids. LDEX found no evidence of the expected density enhancements over the terminators where electrostatic processes were predicted to efficiently loft small grains. LDEX is an impact ionization dust detector, it captures coincident signals and full waveforms to reliably identify dust impacts. LDEX recorded average impact rates of approximately 1 and 0.1 hits/minute of particles with impact charges of q > 0.5 and q > 5 fC, corresponding to particles with radii of a > 0.3 and a> 0.7~μm, respectively. Several of the yearly meteor showers generated sustained elevated levels of impact rates, especially if their radiant direction intersected the lunar surface near the equatorial plane, greatly enhancing the probability of crossing their ejecta plumes. The characteristic velocities of dust particles in the cloud are on the order of ~100 m/s which we neglect compared to the typical spacecraft speeds of 1.6 km/s. Hence, with the knowledge of the spacecraft orbit and attitude, impact rates can be directly turned into particle densities as functions of time and position. LDEX observations are the first to identify the ejecta clouds around the Moon sustained by the continual bombardment of interplanetary dust particles. Most of the dust particles generated in impacts have insufficient energy to escape and follow ballistic orbits, returning to the surface, 'gardening' the regolith. Similar ejecta clouds are expected to engulf all airless planetary objects, including

  17. Methane Lunar Surface Thermal Control Test

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plachta, David W.; Sutherlin, Steven G.; Johnson, Wesley L.; Feller, Jeffrey R.; Jurns, John M.

    2012-01-01

    NASA is considering propulsion system concepts for future missions including human return to the lunar surface. Studies have identified cryogenic methane (LCH4) and oxygen (LO2) as a desirable propellant combination for the lunar surface ascent propulsion system, and they point to a surface stay requirement of 180 days. To meet this requirement, a test article was prepared with state-of-the-art insulation and tested in simulated lunar mission environments at NASA GRC. The primary goals were to validate design and models of the key thermal control technologies to store unvented methane for long durations, with a low-density high-performing Multi-layer Insulation (MLI) system to protect the propellant tanks from the environmental heat of low Earth orbit (LEO), Earth to Moon transit, lunar surface, and with the LCH4 initially densified. The data and accompanying analysis shows this storage design would have fallen well short of the unvented 180 day storage requirement, due to the MLI density being much higher than intended, its substructure collapse, and blanket separation during depressurization. Despite the performance issue, insight into analytical models and MLI construction was gained. Such modeling is important for the effective design of flight vehicle concepts, such as in-space cryogenic depots or in-space cryogenic propulsion stages.

  18. Telerobotic Perception During Asteroid and Mars Regolith Operations Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaddis, Steven; Zeitlin, Nancy (Compiler); Mueller, Robert (Compiler)

    2015-01-01

    Current space telerobotic systems are constrained to only operating in bright light and dust-free conditions. This project will study the effects of difficult lighting and dust conditions on telerobotic perception systems to better assess and refine regolith operations on other neighboring celestial bodies. In partnership with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and Caterpillar, Inc., optical, LiDAR and RADAR sensing equipment will be used in performing the study. This project will create a known dust environment in the Swamp Works Granular Mechanics & Regolith Operations (GMRO) Laboratory regolith test bin to characterize the behavior of the sensing equipment in various calibrated lighting and dust conditions. It will also identify potential methods for mitigating the impacts of these undesirable conditions on the performance of the sensing equipment. Enhancing the capability of telerobotic perception systems will help improve life on earth for those working in dangerous, dusty mining conditions, as well as help advance the same technologies used for safer self-driving automobiles in various lighting and weather conditions. It will also prove to be a critical skill needed for advancing robotic and human exploration throughout our solar system, for activities such as mining on an asteroid or pioneering the first colony on Mars.

  19. Moonshine: Diurnally varying hydration through natural distillation on the Moon, detected by the Lunar Exploration Neutron Detector (LEND).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Livengood, T A; Chin, G; Sagdeev, R Z; Mitrofanov, I G; Boynton, W V; Evans, L G; Litvak, M L; McClanahan, T P; Sanin, A B; Starr, R D; Su, J J

    2015-07-15

    The Lunar Exploration Neutron Detector (LEND), on the polar-orbiting Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) spacecraft, has detected suppression in the Moon's naturally-occurring epithermal neutron leakage flux that is consistent with the presence of diurnally varying quantities of hydrogen in the regolith near the equator. Peak hydrogen concentration (neutron flux suppression) is on the dayside of the dawn terminator and diminishes through the dawn-to-noon sector. The minimum concentration of hydrogen is in the late afternoon and dusk sector. The chemical form of hydrogen is not determinable from these measurements, but other remote sensing methods and anticipated elemental availability suggest water molecules or hydroxyl ions. Signal-to-noise ratio at maximum contrast is 5.6 σ in each of two detector systems. Volatiles are deduced to collect in or on the cold nightside surface and distill out of the regolith after dawn as rotation exposes the surface to sunlight. Liberated volatiles migrate away from the warm subsolar region toward the nearby cold nightside surface beyond the terminator, resulting in maximum concentration at the dawn terminator. The peak concentration within the upper ~1 m of regolith is estimated to be 0.0125 ± 0.0022 weight-percent water-equivalent hydrogen (wt% WEH) at dawn, yielding an accumulation of 190 ± 30 ml recoverable water per square meter of regolith at each dawn. Volatile transport over the lunar surface in opposition to the Moon's rotation exposes molecules to solar ultraviolet radiation. The short lifetime against photolysis and permanent loss of hydrogen from the Moon requires a resupply rate that greatly exceeds anticipated delivery of hydrogen by solar wind implantation or by meteoroid impacts, suggesting that the surface inventory must be continually resupplied by release from a deep volatile inventory in the Moon. The natural distillation of water from the regolith by sunlight and its capture on the cold night surface may

  20. Lunar electrostatic effects and protection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sun, Yongwei; Yuan, Qingyun; Xiong, Jiuliang

    2013-01-01

    The space environment and features on the moon surface are factors in strong electrostatic electrification. Static electricity will be produced in upon friction between lunar soil and detectors or astronauts on the lunar surface. Lunar electrostatic environment effects from lunar exploration equipment are very harmful. Lunar dust with electrostatic charge may enter the equipment or even cover the instruments. It can affect the normal performance of moon detectors. Owing to the huge environmental differences between the moon and the earth, the electrostatic protection technology on the earth can not be applied. In this paper, we review the electrostatic characteristics of lunar dust, its effects on aerospace equipment and moon static elimination technologies. It was concluded that the effect of charged lunar dust on detectors and astronauts should be completely researched as soon as possible.

  1. The Sooner Lunar Schooner: Lunar engineering education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, D. P.; Hougen, D. F.; Shirley, D.

    2003-06-01

    The Sooner Lunar Schooner is a multi-disciplinary ongoing project at the University of Oklahoma to plan, design, prototype, cost and (when funds become available) build/contract and fly a robotic mission to the Moon. The goal of the flight will be to explore a small section of the Moon; conduct a materials analysis of the materials left there by an Apollo mission thirty years earlier; and to perform a selenographic survey of areas that were too distant or considered too dangerous to be done by the Apollo crew. The goal of the Sooner Lunar Schooner Project is to improve the science and engineering educations of the hundreds of undergraduate and graduate students working on the project. The participants, while primarily from engineering and physics, will also include representatives from business, art, journalism, law and education. This project ties together numerous existing research programs at the University, and provides a framework for the creation of many new research proposals. The authors were excited and motivated by the Apollo missions to the Moon. When we asked what we could do to similarly motivate students we realized that nothing is as exciting as going to the Moon. The students seem to agree.

  2. Genesis of the Lunar Landing Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gelzer, Christian

    2009-01-01

    The author examines early research regarding return flight from a Moon landing made prior to President Kennedy's 1961 challenge to put men on the Moon before the end of the decade. Organizations involved in early research include NACA, the Flight Research Center (now Dryden) Bell Aircraft Corporation. The discussion focuses on development of a flight simulator to model the Moon's reduced gravity and development of the Lunar Landing Research Vehicle.

  3. GN and C Subsystem Concept for Safe Precision Landing of the Proposed Lunar MARE Robotic Science Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carson, John M., III; Johnson, Andrew E.; Anderson, F. Scott; Condon, Gerald L.; Nguyen, Louis H.; Olansen, Jon B.; Devolites, Jennifer L.; Harris, William J.; Hines, Glenn D.; Lee, David E.; hide

    2016-01-01

    The Lunar MARE (Moon Age and Regolith Explorer) Discovery Mission concept targets delivery of a science payload to the lunar surface for sample collection and dating. The mission science is within a 100-meter radius region of smooth lunar maria terrain near Aristarchus crater. The location has several small, sharp craters and rocks that present landing hazards to the spacecraft. For successful delivery of the science payload to the surface, the vehicle Guidance, Navigation and Control (GN&C) subsystem requires safe and precise landing capability, so design infuses the NASA Autonomous precision Landing and Hazard Avoidance Technology (ALHAT) and a gimbaled, throttleable LOX/LCH4 main engine. The ALHAT system implemented for Lunar MARE is a specialization of prototype technologies in work within NASA for the past two decades, including a passive optical Terrain Relative Navigation (TRN) sensor, a Navigation Doppler Lidar (NDL) velocity and range sensor, and a Lidar-based Hazard Detection (HD) sensor. The landing descent profile is from a retrograde orbit over lighted terrain with landing near lunar dawn. The GN&C subsystem with ALHAT capabilities will deliver the science payload to the lunar surface within a 20-meter landing ellipse of the target location and at a site having greater than 99% safety probability, which minimizes risk to safe landing and delivery of the MARE science payload to the intended terrain region.

  4. Toxicity of lunar dust

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Linnarsson, D.; Carpenter, J.; Fubini, B.; Gerde, P.; Loftus, D.; Prisk, K.; Staufer, U.; Tranfield, E.; van Westrenen, W.

    2012-01-01

    The formation, composition and physical properties of lunar dust are incompletely characterised with regard to human health. While the physical and chemical determinants of dust toxicity for materials such as asbestos, quartz, volcanic ashes and urban particulate matter have been the focus of

  5. Lunar Phases Planisphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shawl, Stephen J.

    2010-01-01

    This paper describes a lunar phases planisphere with which a user can answer questions about the rising and setting times of the Moon as well as questions about where the Moon will be at a given phase and time. The article contains figures that can be photocopied to make the planisphere. (Contains 2 figures.)

  6. Lunar magma transport phenomena

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spera, Frank J.

    1992-01-01

    An outline of magma transport theory relevant to the evolution of a possible Lunar Magma Ocean and the origin and transport history of the later phase of mare basaltic volcanism is presented. A simple model is proposed to evaluate the extent of fractionation as magma traverses the cold lunar lithosphere. If Apollo green glasses are primitive and have not undergone significant fractionation en route to the surface, then mean ascent rates of 10 m/s and cracks of widths greater than 40 m are indicated. Lunar tephra and vesiculated basalts suggest that a volatile component plays a role in eruption dynamics. The predominant vapor species appear to be CO CO2, and COS. Near the lunar surface, the vapor fraction expands enormously and vapor internal energy is converted to mixture kinetic energy with the concomitant high-speed ejection of vapor and pyroclasts to form lunary fire fountain deposits such as the Apollo 17 orange and black glasses and Apollo 15 green glass.

  7. Closure and ratio correlation analysis of lunar chemical and grain size data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butler, J. C.

    1976-01-01

    Major element and major element plus trace element analyses were selected from the lunar data base for Apollo 11, 12 and 15 basalt and regolith samples. Summary statistics for each of the six data sets were compiled, and the effects of closure on the Pearson product moment correlation coefficient were investigated using the Chayes and Kruskal approximation procedure. In general, there are two types of closure effects evident in these data sets: negative correlations of intermediate size which are solely the result of closure, and correlations of small absolute value which depart significantly from their expected closure correlations which are of intermediate size. It is shown that a positive closure correlation will arise only when the product of the coefficients of variation is very small (less than 0.01 for most data sets) and, in general, trace elements in the lunar data sets exhibit relatively large coefficients of variation.

  8. Drilling Load Model of an Inchworm Boring Robot for Lunar Subsurface Exploration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weiwei Zhang

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available In the past decade, the wireline robot has received increasing attention due to the advantages of light weight, low cost, and flexibility compared to the traditional drilling instruments in space missions. For the lunar subsurface in situ exploration mission, we proposed a type of wireline robot named IBR (Inchworm Boring Robot drawing inspiration from the inchworm. Two auger tools are utilized to remove chips for IBR, which directly interacted with the lunar regolith in the drilling process. Therefore, for obtaining the tools drilling characteristics, the chips removal principle of IBR is analyzed and its drilling load model is further established based on the soil mechanical theory in this paper. And then the proposed theoretical drilling load model is experimentally validated. In addition, according to the theoretical drilling load model, this paper discusses the effect of the drilling parameters on the tools drilling moments and power consumption. These results imply a possible energy-efficient control strategy for IBR.

  9. Modeling Solar-Wind Heavy-Ions' Potential Sputtering of Lunar KREEP Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barghouty, A. F.; Meyer, F. W.; Harris, R. P.; Adams, J. H., Jr.

    2012-01-01

    Recent laboratory data suggest that potential sputtering may be an important weathering mechanism that can affect the composition of both the lunar surface and its tenuous exosphere; its role and implications, however, remain unclear. Using a relatively simple kinetic model, we will demonstrate that solar-wind heavy ions induced sputtering of KREEP surfaces is critical in establishing the timescale of the overall solar-wind sputtering process of the lunar surface. We will also also show that potential sputtering leads to a more pronounced and significant differentiation between depleted and enriched surface elements. We briefly discuss the impacts of enhanced sputtering on the composition of the regolith and the exosphere, as well as of solar-wind sputtering as a source of hydrogen and water on the moon.

  10. Discoveries from Revisiting Apollo Direct Active Measurements of Lunar Dust

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Brien, Brian

    2010-05-01

    New missions to the moon being developed by China, Japan, India, USA, Russia and Europe and possibilities of human missions about 2020 face the reality that 6 Apollo expeditions did not totally manage or mitigate effects of easily-mobilised and very "sticky" lunar dust on humans and hardware. Laboratory and theoretical modelling cannot reliably simulate the complex lunar environments that affect dynamical movements of lunar dust. The only direct active measurements of lunar dust during Apollo were made by matchbox-sized minimalist Dust Detector Experiments (DDEs) deployed to transmit some 30 million digital measurements from Apollo 11, 12, 14 and 15. These were misplaced or relatively ignored until 2009, when a self-funded suite of discoveries (O'Brien Geophys. Research Letters FIX 6 May 2099) revealed unexpected properties of lunar dust, such as the adhesive force being stronger as illumination increased. We give the first reports of contrasting effects, contamination or cleansing, from rocket exhausts of Apollo 11, 12, 14 and 15 Lunar Modules leaving the moon. We further strengthen the importance of collateral dust inadvertently splashed on Apollo hardware by human activities. Dust management designs and mission plans require optimum use of such in situ measurements, extended by laboratory simulations and theoretical modelling.

  11. Differential rates of feldspar weathering in granitic regoliths

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, A.F.; Bullen, T.D.; Schulz, M.S.; Blum, A.E.; Huntington, T.G.; Peters, N.E.

    2001-01-01

    Differential rates of plagioclase and K-feldspar weathering commonly observed in bedrock and soil environments are examined in terms of chemical kinetic and solubility controls and hydrologic permeability. For the Panola regolith, in the Georgia Piedmont Province of southeastern United States, petrographic observations, coupled with elemental balances and 87Sr/86Sr ratios, indicate that plagioclase is being converted to kaolinite at depths > 6 m in the granitic bedrock. K-feldspar remains pristine in the bedrock but subsequently weathers to kaolinite at the overlying saprolite. In contrast, both plagioclase and K-feldspar remain stable in granitic bedrocks elsewhere in Piedmont Province, such as Davis Run, Virginia, where feldspars weather concurrently in an overlying thick saprolite sequence. Kinetic rate constants, mineral surface areas, and secondary hydraulic conductivities are fitted to feldspar losses with depth in the Panola and Davis Run regoliths using a time-depth computer spreadsheet model. The primary hydraulic conductivities, describing the rates of meteoric water penetration into the pristine granites, are assumed to be equal to the propagation rates of weathering fronts, which, based on cosmogenic isotope dating, are 7 m/106 yr for the Panola regolith and 4 m/106 yr for the Davis Run regolith. Best fits in the calculations indicate that the kinetic rate constants for plagioclase in both regoliths are factors of two to three times faster than K-feldspar, which is in agreement with experimental findings. However, the range for plagioclase and K-feldspar rates (kr = 1.5 x 10-17 to 2.8 x 10-16 mol m-2 s-1) is three to four orders of magnitude lower than for that for experimental feldspar dissolution rates and are among the slowest yet recorded for natural feldspar weathering. Such slow rates are attributed to the relatively old geomorphic ages of the Panola and Davis Run regoliths, implying that mineral surface reactivity decreases significantly with

  12. Proceedings of the 40th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-01

    ; Seek Out and Explore: Upcoming and Future Missions; Mars: Early History and Impact Processes; Mars Analogs II: Chemical and Spectral; Achondrites and their Parent Bodies; and Planning for Future Exploration of the Moon The poster sessions were: Lunar Missions: Results from Kaguya, Chang'e-1, and Chandrayaan-1; LRO and LCROSS; Geophysical Analysis of the Lunar Surface and Interior; Remote Observation and Geologic Mapping of the Lunar Surface; Lunar Spectroscopy; Venus Geology, Geophysics, Mapping, and Sampling; Planetary Differentiation; Bunburra and Buzzard Coulee: Recent Meteorite Falls; Meteorites: Terrestrial History; CAIs and Chondrules: Records of Early Solar System Processes; Volatile and Organic Compounds in Chondrites; Crashing Chondrites: Impact, Shock, and Melting; Ureilite Studies; Petrology and Mineralogy of the SNC Meteorites; Martian Meteorites; Phoenix Landing Site: Perchlorate and Other Tasty Treats; Mars Polar Atmospheres and Climate Modeling; Mars Polar Investigations; Mars Near-Surface Ice; Mars: A Volatile-Rich Planet; Mars: Geochemistry and Alteration Processes; Martian Phyllosilicates: Identification, Formation, and Alteration; Astrobiology; Instrument Concepts, Systems, and Probes for Investigating Rocks and Regolith; Seeing is Believing: UV, VIS, IR, X- and Gamma-Ray Camera and Spectrometer Instruments; Up Close and Personal: In Situ Analysis with Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy and Mass Spectrometry; Jupiter and Inscrutable Io; Tantalizing Titan; Enigmatic Enceladus and Intriguing Iapetus; Icy Satellites: Cryptic Craters; Icy Satellites: Gelid Geology/Geophysics; Icy Satellites: Cool Chemistry and Spectacular Spectroscopy; Asteroids and Comets; Comet Wild 2: Mineralogy and More; Hypervelocity Impacts: Stardust Models, LDEF, and ISPE; Presolar Grains; Early Nebular Processes: Models and Isotopes; Solar Wind and Genesis: Measurements and Interpretation; Education and Public Outreach; Mercury; Pursuing Lunar Exploration; Sources and Eruptionf

  13. Modelling of the dose-rate variations with depth in the Martian regolith using GEANT4

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morthekai, P.; Jain, M.; Dartnell, L.; Murray, A.S.; Botter-Jensen, L.; Desorgher, L.

    2007-01-01

    The environmental radiation field at the Martian surface consists mainly of Galactic Cosmic Rays (GCR) and charged particles ejected during the Solar Particle Events (SPE). Interactions between these radiation fluxes and the regolith result in a complex radiation field that varies both as a function of depth and time and can only be quantified using radiation transport models. We first describe here the main issues and constraints in deriving Martian dose rates. Preliminary results, obtained using the GEANT4 Monte Carlo simulation tool kit, suggest the surface dose rate is ∼63 mGy a -1 during quiet periods in solar activity. The accuracy of the model predictions has been tested by comparison with published observations of cosmic ray dose-rate variation in the Earth's atmosphere

  14. Lunabotics Mining: Evolution of ARTEMIS PRIME

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertke, Sarah; Gries, Christine; Huff, Amanda; Logan, Brittany; Oliver, Kaitlin; Rigney, Erica; Tyree, Whitney; Young, Maegan

    2010-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the development of Amassing Regolith with Topper Engineers eMploying Innovative Solutions (ARTEMIS) in a competition to develop robotic lunar mining capabilities. The goal of the competition was to design, build and operate a remotely controlled device that is capable of excavating, transporting and discharging lunar regolith simulant in a lunar environment over a 13 minute period.

  15. The International Lunar Decade Declaration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beldavs, V.; Foing, B.; Bland, D.; Crisafulli, J.

    2015-10-01

    The International Lunar Decade Declaration was discussed at the conference held November 9-13, 2014 in Hawaii "The Next Giant Leap: Leveraging Lunar Assets for Sustainable Pathways to Space" - http://2014giantleap.aerospacehawaii.info/ and accepted by a core group that forms the International Lunar Decade Working Group (ILDWG) that is seeking to make the proposed global event and decade long process a reality. The Declaration will be updated from time to time by members of the ILDWreflecting new knowledge and fresh perspectives that bear on building a global consortium with a mission to progress from lunar exploration to the transformation of the Moon into a wealth gene rating platform for the expansion of humankind into the solar system. When key organizations have endorsed the idea and joined the effort the text of the Declaration will be considered final. An earlier International Lunar Decade proposal was issued at the 8th ICEUM Conference in 2006 in Beijing together with 13 specific initiatives for lunar exploration[1,2,3]. These initiatives have been largely implemented with coordination among the different space agencies involved provided by the International Lunar Exploration Working Group[2,3]. The Second International Lunar Decade from 2015 reflects current trends towards increasing involvement of commercial firms in space, particularly seeking opportunities beyond low Earth orbit. The central vision of the International Lunar Decade is to build the foundations for a sustainable space economy through international collaboration concurrently addressing Lunar exploration and building a shared knowledge base;Policy development that enables collabo rative research and development leading to lunar mining and industrial and commercial development;Infrastructure on the Moon and in cislunar space (communications, transport, energy systems, way-stations, other) that reduces costs, lowers risks and speeds up the time to profitable operations;Enabling technologies

  16. Resistance of Terrestrial Microbial Communities to Impack of Physical Conditinos of Subsurface Layers of Martian Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheptsov, V. S.; Vorobyova, E. A.

    2017-05-01

    Currently, astrobiology is focused on Mars as one of the most perspective objects in the Solar System to search for microbial life. It was assumed that the putative biosphere of Mars could be cryopreserved and had been stored for billions of years in anabiotic state like microbial communities of Arctic and Antarctic permafrost deposits have been preserved till now for millions of years. In this case microbial cells should be not able to repair the damages or these processes have to be significantly depressed, and the main factor causing cell's death should be ionizing radiation. In a series of experiments we simulated the effects of combination of physical factors known as characteristics of the Martian regolith (and close to the space environment) on the natural microbial communities inhabiting xerophytic harsh habitats with extreme temperature conditions: polar permafrost and desert soils. The aim of the study was to examine the cumulative effect of factors (gamma radiation, low temperature, low pressure) to assess the possibility of metabolic reactions, and to find limits of the viability of natural microbial communities after exposure to the given conditions. It was found that microbial biomarkers could be reliably detected in soil samples after radiation dose accumulation up to 1 MGy (not further investigated) in combination with exposure to low temperature and low pressure. Resistance to extremely high doses of radiation in simulated conditions proves that if there was an Earth-like biosphere on the early Mars microorganisms could survive in the surface or subsurface layers of the Martian regolith for more than tens of millions of years after climate change. The study gives also some new grounds for the approval of transfer of viable microorganisms in space.

  17. Lunar Airborne Dust Toxicity Hazard Assessments (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, B. L.; McKay, D. S.; Taylor, L. A.; Wallace, W. T.; James, J.; Riofrio, L.; Gonzalez, C. P.

    2009-12-01

    The Lunar Airborne Dust Toxicity Assessment Group (LADTAG) is developing data to set the permissible limits for human exposure to lunar dust. This standard will guide the design of airlocks and ports for EVA, as well as the requirements for filtering and monitoring the atmosphere in habitable vehicles, rovers and other modules. LADTAG’s recommendation for permissible exposure limits will be delivered to the Constellation Program in late 2010. The current worst-case exposure limit of 0.05 mg/m3, estimated by LADTAG in 2006, reflects the concern that lunar dust may be as toxic as quartz dust. Freshly-ground quartz is known to be more toxic than un-ground quartz dust. Our research has shown that the surfaces of lunar soil grains can be more readily activated by grinding than quartz. Activation was measured by the amount of free radicals generated—activated simulants generate Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) i.e., production of hydroxyl free radicals. Of the various influences in the lunar environment, micrometeorite bombardment probably creates the most long-lasting reactivity on the surfaces of grains, although solar wind impingement and short-wavelength UV radiation also contribute. The comminution process creates fractured surfaces with unsatisfied bonds. When these grains are inhaled and carried into the lungs, they will react with lung surfactant and cells, potentially causing tissue damage and disease. Tests on lunar simulants have shown that dissolution and leaching of metals can occur when the grains are exposed to water—the primary component of lung fluid. However, simulants may behave differently than actual lunar soils. Rodent toxicity testing will be done using the respirable fraction of actual lunar soils (particles with physical size of less than 2.5 micrometers). We are currently separating the fine material from the coarser material that comprises >95% of the mass of each soil sample. Dry sieving is not practical in this size range, so a new system

  18. International lunar observatory / power station: from Hawaii to the Moon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durst, S.

    -like lava flow geology adds to Mauna Kea / Moon similarities. Operating amidst the extinct volcano's fine grain lava and dust particles offers experience for major challenges posed by silicon-edged, powdery, deep and abundant lunar regolith. Power stations for lunar observatories, both robotic and low cost at first, are an immediate enabling necessity and will serve as a commercial-industrial driver for a wide range of lunar base technologies. Both microwave rectenna-transmitters and radio-optical telescopes, maybe 1-meter diameter, can be designed using the same, new ultra-lightweight materials. Five of the world's six major spacefaring powers - America, Russia, Japan, China and India, are located around Hawaii in the Pacific / Asia area. With Europe, which has many resources in the Pacific hemisphere including Arianespace offices in Tokyo and Singapore, they have 55-60% of the global population. New international business partnerships such as Sea Launch in the mid-Pacific, and national ventures like China's Hainan spaceport, Japan's Kiribati shuttle landing site, Australia and Indonesia's emerging launch sites, and Russia's Ekranoplane sea launcher / lander - all combine with still more and advancing technologies to provide the central Pacific a globally representative, state-of-the-art and profitable access to space in this new century. The astronomer / engineers tasked with operation of the lunar observatory / power station will be the first to voyage from Hawaii to the Moon, before this decade is out. Their scientific and technical training at the world's leading astronomical complex on the lunar-like landscape of Mauna Kea may be enhanced with the learning and transmission of local cultures. Following the astronomer / engineers, tourism and travel in the commercially and technologically dynamic Pacific hemisphere will open the new ocean of space to public access in the 21st century like they opened the old ocean of sea and air to Hawaii in the 20th - with Hawaii

  19. Laser-powered lunar base

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Costen, R.; Humes, D.H.; Walker, G.H.; Williams, M.D.; Deyoung, R.J.

    1989-01-01

    The objective was to compare a nuclear reactor-driven Sterling engine lunar base power source to a laser-to-electric converter with orbiting laser power station, each providing 1 MW of electricity to the lunar base. The comparison was made on the basis of total mass required in low-Earth-orbit for each system. This total mass includes transportation mass required to place systems in low-lunar orbit or on the lunar surface. The nuclear reactor with Sterling engines is considered the reference mission for lunar base power and is described first. The details of the laser-to-electric converter and mass are discussed. The next two solar-driven high-power laser concepts, the diode array laser or the iodine laser system, are discussed with associated masses in low-lunar-orbit. Finally, the payoff for laser-power beaming is summarized

  20. The Current Status of the Japanese Penetrator Mission: LUNAR-A

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, S.; Shiraishi, H.; Fujimura, A.; Hayakawa, H.

    The scientific objective of the LUNAR-A, Japanese Penetrator Mission, is to explore the lunar interior by seismic and heat-flow experiments. Two penetrators containing two seismometers (horizontal and vertical components) and heat-flow probes will be deployed from a spacecraft onto the lunar surface, one on the nearside and the other on the farside of the moon. The final impact velocity of the penetrator will be about 300m/sec; it will encounter a shock of about 8000 G at impact on the lunar surface. According to numerous experimental impact tests using model penetrators and a lunar regolith analog target, each penetrator is predicted to penetrate to a depth of 1 to 3 m. The data obtained by the penetrators will be transmitted to the earth station via the LUNAR-A mother spacecraft orbiting at an altitude of about 200 km. The penetrator is a missile-shaped instrument carrier, which is about 14cm in diameter, 75cm in length, and about 14kg in weight without attitude control system. It contains a two-component seismometer and heat flow probes together with other supporting instruments such as a tilt meter and an accelerometer. The seismic observations are expected to provide key data on the size of the lunar core, as well as data on deep lunar mantle structure. The heat flow measurements at two penetrator deployment sites will also provide important data on the thermal structure and bulk concentrations of heat-generating elements in the Moon. These data will provide much stronger geophysical constraints on the origin and evolution of the Moon than has been obtained so far. The LUNAR-A spacecraft was supposed to be launched in the summer of 2004, but it was postponed due to the necessity of a replacement of the valves used in the RCS propulsion system of the spacecraft, following a recall issued by the manufacturer who found a malfunction of similar valves. Then, the technological review boards by ISAS and JAXA recommended that both the more robustness of the

  1. Real-Time Science Operations to Support a Lunar Polar Volatiles Rover Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heldmann, Jennifer L.; Colaprete, Anthony; Elphic, Richard C.; Mattes, Greg; Ennico, Kimberly; Fritzler, Erin; Marinova, Margarita M.; McMurray, Robert; Morse, Stephanie; Roush, Ted L.; hide

    2014-01-01

    Future human exploration of the Moon will likely rely on in situ resource utilization (ISRU) to enable long duration lunar missions. Prior to utilizing ISRU on the Moon, the natural resources (in this case lunar volatiles) must be identified and characterized, and ISRU demonstrated on the lunar surface. To enable future uses of ISRU, NASA and the CSA are developing a lunar rover payload that can (1) locate near subsurface volatiles, (2) excavate and analyze samples of the volatile-bearing regolith, and (3) demonstrate the form, extractability and usefulness of the materials. Such investigations are important both for ISRU purposes and for understanding the scientific nature of these intriguing lunar volatile deposits. Temperature models and orbital data suggest near surface volatile concentrations may exist at briefly lit lunar polar locations outside persistently shadowed regions. A lunar rover could be remotely operated at some of these locations for the approx. 2-14 days of expected sunlight at relatively low cost. Due to the limited operational time available, both science and rover operations decisions must be made in real time, requiring immediate situational awareness, data analysis, and decision support tools. Given these constraints, such a mission requires a new concept of operations. In this paper we outline the results and lessons learned from an analog field campaign in July 2012 which tested operations for a lunar polar rover concept. A rover was operated in the analog environment of Hawaii by an off-site Flight Control Center, a rover navigation center in Canada, a Science Backroom at NASA Ames Research Center in California, and support teams at NASA Johnson Space Center in Texas and NASA Kennedy Space Center in Florida. We find that this type of mission requires highly efficient, real time, remotely operated rover operations to enable low cost, scientifically relevant exploration of the distribution and nature of lunar polar volatiles. The field

  2. Lunar Dust Mitigation Screens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knutson, Shawn; Holloway, Nancy

    With plans for the United States to return to the moon, and establish a sustainable human presence on the lunar surface many issues must be successfully overcome. Lunar dust is one of a number of issues with the potential to create a myriad of problems if not adequately addressed. Samples of dust brought back from Apollo missions show it to be soft, yet sharp and abrasive. The dust consists of a variety of morphologies including spherical, angular blocks, shards, and a number of irregular shapes. One of the main issues with lunar dust is its attraction to stick to anything it comes in contact with (i.e. astronauts, equipment, habitats, etc.). Ionized radiation from the sun strikes the moon's surface and creates an electrostatic charge on the dust. Further, the dust harbors van der Waals forces making it especially difficult to separate once it sticks to a surface. During the Apollo missions, it was discovered that trying to brush the lunar dust from spacesuits was not effective, and rubbing it caused degradation of the suit material. Further, when entering the lunar module after moonwalks, the astronauts noted that the dust was so prolific inside the cabin that they inhaled and ingested it, causing at least one of them, Harrison "Jack" Schmidt, to report irritation of the throat and lungs. It is speculated that the dust could also harm an astronaut's nervous and cardiovascular systems, especially during an extended stay. In addition to health issues, the dust can also cause problems by scouring reflective coatings off of thermal blankets, and roughening surfaces of windows and optics. Further, panels on solar cells and photovoltaics can also be compromised due to dust sticking on the surfaces. Lunar dust has the capacity to penetrate seals, interfere with connectors, as well as mechanisms on digging machines, all of which can lead to problems and failure. To address lunar dust issues, development of electrostatic screens to mitigate dust on sur-faces is currently

  3. International Lunar Decade Status

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beldavs, VZ; Crisafulli, J.; Dunlop, D.; Foing, B.

    2017-09-01

    The International Lunar Decade is a global decadal event designed to provide a framework for strategically directed international cooperation for permanent return to the Moon. To be launched July 20, 2019, the 50th anniversary of the giant leap for mankind marked by Neil Armstrong's first step on the Moon, the ILD launch will include events around the world to celebrate space exploration, science, and the expansion of humanity into the Solar System. The ILD framework links lunar exploration and space sciences with the development of enabling technologies, infrastructure, means of financing, laws and policies aimed at lowering the costs and risks of venturing into space. Dramatically reduced costs will broaden the range of opportunities available in space and widen access to space for more states, companies and people worldwide. The ILD is intended to bring about the efflorescence of commercial business based on space resources from the Moon, asteroids, comets and other bodies in the Solar System.

  4. Lunar Core and Tides

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, J. G.; Boggs, D. H.; Ratcliff, J. T.

    2004-01-01

    Variations in rotation and orientation of the Moon are sensitive to solid-body tidal dissipation, dissipation due to relative motion at the fluid-core/solid-mantle boundary, and tidal Love number k2 [1,2]. There is weaker sensitivity to flattening of the core-mantle boundary (CMB) [2,3,4] and fluid core moment of inertia [1]. Accurate Lunar Laser Ranging (LLR) measurements of the distance from observatories on the Earth to four retroreflector arrays on the Moon are sensitive to lunar rotation and orientation variations and tidal displacements. Past solutions using the LLR data have given results for dissipation due to solid-body tides and fluid core [1] plus Love number [1-5]. Detection of CMB flattening, which in the past has been marginal but improving [3,4,5], now seems significant. Direct detection of the core moment has not yet been achieved.

  5. The Lunar Sample Compendium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Charles

    2009-01-01

    The Lunar Sample Compendium is a succinct summary of the data obtained from 40 years of study of Apollo and Luna samples of the Moon. Basic petrographic, chemical and age information is compiled, sample-by-sample, in the form of an advanced catalog in order to provide a basic description of each sample. The LSC can be found online using Google. The initial allocation of lunar samples was done sparingly, because it was realized that scientific techniques would improve over the years and new questions would be formulated. The LSC is important because it enables scientists to select samples within the context of the work that has already been done and facilitates better review of proposed allocations. It also provides back up material for public displays, captures information found only in abstracts, grey literature and curatorial databases and serves as a ready access to the now-vast scientific literature.

  6. Mercury's Weather-Beaten Surface: Understanding Mercury in the Context of Lunar and Asteroid Space Weathering Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dominque, Deborah L.; Chapman, Clark R.; Killen, Rosemary M.; Zurbuchen, Thomas H.; Gilbert, Jason A.; Sarantos, Menelaos; Benna, Mehdi; Slavin, James A.; Orlando, Thomas M.; Schriver, David; hide

    2011-01-01

    Understanding the composition of Mercury's crust is key to comprehending the formation of the planet. The regolith, derived from the crustal bedrock, has been altered via a set of space weathering processes. These processes are the same set of mechanisms that work to form Mercury's exosphere, and are moderated by the local space environment and the presence of an intrinsic planetary magnetic field. The alterations need to be understood in order to determine the initial crustal compositions. The complex interrelationships between Mercury's exospheric processes, the space environment, and surface composition are examined and reviewed. The processes are examined in the context of our understanding of these same processes on the lunar and asteroid regoliths. Keywords: Mercury (planet) Space weathering Surface processes Exosphere Surface composition Space environment 3

  7. Lunar concrete for construction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cullingford, Hatice S.; Keller, M. Dean

    1988-01-01

    Feasibility of using concrete for lunar-base construction has been discussed recently without relevant data for the effects of vacuum on concrete. Experimental studies performed earlier at Los Alamos have shown that concrete is stable in vacuum with no deterioration of its quality as measured by the compressive strength. Various considerations of using concrete successfully on the moon are provided in this paper along with specific conclusions from the existing data base.

  8. PDS Archive Release of Apollo 11, Apollo 12, and Apollo 17 Lunar Rock Sample Images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia, P. A.; Stefanov, W. L.; Lofgren, G. E.; Todd, N. S.; Gaddis, L. R.

    2013-01-01

    Scientists at the Johnson Space Center (JSC) Lunar Sample Laboratory, Information Resources Directorate, and Image Science & Analysis Laboratory have been working to digitize (scan) the original film negatives of Apollo Lunar Rock Sample photographs [1, 2]. The rock samples, and associated regolith and lunar core samples, were obtained during the Apollo 11, 12, 14, 15, 16 and 17 missions. The images allow scientists to view the individual rock samples in their original or subdivided state prior to requesting physical samples for their research. In cases where access to the actual physical samples is not practical, the images provide an alternate mechanism for study of the subject samples. As the negatives are being scanned, they have been formatted and documented for permanent archive in the NASA Planetary Data System (PDS). The Astromaterials Research and Exploration Science Directorate (which includes the Lunar Sample Laboratory and Image Science & Analysis Laboratory) at JSC is working collaboratively with the Imaging Node of the PDS on the archiving of these valuable data. The PDS Imaging Node is now pleased to announce the release of the image archives for Apollo missions 11, 12, and 17.

  9. Effects of Rocket Exhaust on Lunar Soil Reflectance Properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clegg, R. N.; Jolliff, B. L.; Robinson, M. S.; Hapke, B. W.; Plescia, J. B.

    2012-12-01

    The Apollo, Surveyor, and Luna spacecraft descent engine plumes affected the regolith at and surrounding their landing sites. Owing to the lack of rapid weathering processes on the Moon, surface alterations are still visible as photometric anomalies in Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC) Narrow Angle Camera (NAC) images. These areas are interpreted as disturbance of the regolith by rocket exhaust during descent of the spacecraft, which we refer to as "blast zones" (BZs). The BZs consist of an area of lower reflectance (LR-BZ) compared to the surroundings that extends up to a few meters out from the landers, as well as a broader halo of higher reflectance (HR-BZ) that extends tens to hundreds of meters out from the landers. We use phase-ratio images for each landing site to determine the spatial extent of the disturbed regions and to quantify differences in reflectance and backscattering characteristics within the BZs compared to nearby undisturbed regolith. We also compare the reflectance changes and BZ dimensions at the Apollo sites with those at Luna and Surveyor sites. We seek to determine the effects of rocket exhaust in terms of erosion and particle redistribution, as well as the cause(s) of the reflectance variations, i.e., physical changes at the regolith surface. When approximated as an ellipse, the average Apollo BZ area is ~29,000 m2 (~175 ± 60 m by 200 ± 27 m) which is 10x larger than the average Luna BZ, and over 100x larger than the average Surveyor BZ. Moreover, BZ area scales roughly with lander mass (as a proxy for thrust). The LR-BZs are evident at the Apollo sites, especially where astronaut bioturbation has roughened the soil, leading to a 2-14% reduction in reflectance at ~30° phase. The LR-BZs at the Luna and Surveyor sites are less evident and may be mostly confined to the area below the landers. The average normalized reflectance in the HR-BZs for images with a 30° phase angle is 2-16% higher than in the undisturbed surrounding

  10. Religion and Lunar Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pop, V.

    1969: The Eagle lands on the Moon. A moment that would not only mark the highest scientific achievement of all times, but would also have significant religious impli- cations. While the island of Bali lodges a protest at the United Nations against the US for desecrating a sacred place, Hopi Indians celebrate the fulfilment of an ancient prophecy that would reveal the "truth of the Sacred Ways". The plaque fastened to the Eagle - "We Came in Peace for All Mankind" would have contained the words "under God" as directed by the US president, if not for an assistant administrator at NASA that did not want to offend any religion. In the same time, Buzz Aldrin takes the Holy Communion on the Moon, and a Bible is left there by another Apollo mission - not long after the crew of Apollo 8 reads a passage from Genesis while circling the Moon. 1998: Navajo Indians lodge a protest with NASA for placing human ashes aboard the Lunar Prospector, as the Moon is a sacred place in their religion. Past, present and fu- ture exploration of the Moon has significant religious and spiritual implications that, while not widely known, are nonetheless important. Is lunar exploration a divine duty, or a sacrilege? This article will feature and thoroughly analyse the examples quoted above, as well as other facts, as for instance the plans of establishing lunar cemeteries - welcomed by some religions, and opposed by others.

  11. Modeling lunar volcanic eruptions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Housley, R. M.

    1978-01-01

    Simple physical arguments are used to show that basaltic volcanos on different planetary bodies would fountain to the same height if the mole fraction of gas in the magma scaled with the acceleration of gravity. It is suggested that the actual eruption velocities and fountain heights are controlled by the velocities of sound in the two phase gas/liquid flows. These velocities are in turn determined by the gas contents in the magma. Predicted characteristics of Hawaiian volcanos are in excellent accord with observations. Assuming that the only gas in lunar volcano is the CO which would be produced if the observed Fe metal in lunar basalts resulted from graphite reduction, lunar volcanos would fountain vigorously, but not as spectacularly as their terrestrial counterparts. The volatile trace metals, halogens, and sulfur released would be transported over the entire moon by the transient atmosphere. Orange and black glass type pyroclastic materials would be transported in sufficient amounts to produce the observed dark mantle deposits.

  12. Ion microprobe mass analysis of plagioclase from 'non-mare' lunar samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, C., Jr.; Anderson, D. H.; Bradley, J. G.

    1974-01-01

    The ion microprobe was used to measure the composition and distribution of trace elements in lunar plagioclase, and these analyses are used as criteria in determining the possible origins of some nonmare lunar samples. The Apollo 16 samples with metaclastic texture and high-bulk trace-element contents contain plagioclase clasts with extremely low trace-element contents. These plagioclase inclusions represent unequilibrated relicts of anorthositic, noritic, or troctolitic rocks that have been intermixed as a rock flour into the KREEP-rich matrix of these samples. All of the plagioclase-rich inclusions which were analyzed in the KREEP-rich Apollo 14 breccias were found to be rich in trace elements. This does not seem to be consistent with the interpretation that the Apollo 14 samples represent a pre-Imbrium regolith, because such an ancient regolith should have contained many plagioclase clasts with low trace-element contents more typical of plagioclase from the pre-Imbrium crust. Ion-microprobe analyses for Ba and Sr in large plagioclase phenocrysts in 14310 and 68415 are consistent with the bulk compositions of these rocks and with the known distribution coefficients for these elements. The distribution coefficient for Li (basaltic liquid/plagioclase) was measured to be about 2.

  13. Lunar Net—a proposal in response to an ESA M3 call in 2010 for a medium sized mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Alan; Crawford, I. A.; Gowen, Robert Anthony; Ambrosi, R.; Anand, M.; Banerdt, B.; Bannister, N.; Bowles, N.; Braithwaite, C.; Brown, P.; Chela-Flores, J.; Cholinser, T.; Church, P.; Coates, A. J.; Colaprete, T.; Collins, G.; Collinson, G.; Cook, T.; Elphic, R.; Fraser, G.; Gao, Y.; Gibson, E.; Glotch, T.; Grande, M.; Griffiths, A.; Grygorczuk, J.; Gudipati, M.; Hagermann, A.; Heldmann, J.; Hood, L. L.; Jones, A. P.; Joy, K. H.; Khavroshkin, O. B.; Klingelhoefer, G.; Knapmeyer, M.; Kramer, G.; Lawrence, D.; Marczewski, W.; McKenna-Lawlor, S.; Miljkovic, K.; Narendranath, S.; Palomba, E.; Phipps, A.; Pike, W. T.; Pullan, D.; Rask, J.; Richard, D. T.; Seweryn, K.; Sheridan, S.; Sims, M.; Sweeting, M.; Swindle, T.; Talboys, D.; Taylor, L.; Teanby, N.; Tong, V.; Ulamec, S.; Wawrzaszek, R.; Wieczorek, M.; Wilson, L.; Wright, I.

    2012-04-01

    Emplacement of four or more kinetic penetrators geographically distributed over the lunar surface can enable a broad range of scientific exploration objectives of high priority and provide significant synergy with planned orbital missions. Whilst past landed missions achieved a great deal, they have not included a far-side lander, or investigation of the lunar interior apart from a very small area on the near side. Though the LCROSS mission detected water from a permanently shadowed polar crater, there remains in-situ confirmation, knowledge of concentration levels, and detailed identification of potential organic chemistry of astrobiology interest. The planned investigations will also address issues relating to the origin and evolution of the Earth-Moon system and other Solar System planetary bodies. Manned missions would be enhanced with use of water as a potential in-situ resource; knowledge of potential risks from damaging surface Moonquakes, and exploitation of lunar regolith for radiation shielding. LunarNet is an evolution of the 2007 LunarEX proposal to ESA (European Space Agency) which draws on recent significant advances in mission definition and feasibility. In particular, the successful Pendine full-scale impact trials have proved impact survivability for many of the key technology items, and a penetrator system study has greatly improved the definition of descent systems, detailed penetrator designs, and required resources. LunarNet is hereby proposed as an exciting stand-alone mission, though is also well suited in whole or in-part to contribute to the jigsaw of upcoming lunar missions, including that of a significant element to the ILN (International Lunar Network).

  14. Distal Ejecta from Lunar Impacts: Extensive Regions of Rocky Deposits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bandfield, Joshua L.; Cahill, Joshua T. S.; Carter, Lynn M.; Neish, Catherine D.; Patterson, G. Wesley; Williams, Jean-Pierre; Paige, David A.

    2016-01-01

    Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) Diviner Radiometer, Mini-RF, and LRO Camera data were used to identify and characterize rocky lunar deposits that appear well separated from any potential source crater. Two regions are described: 1) A approximate 18,000 sq km area with elevated rock abundance and extensive melt ponds and veneers near the antipode of Tycho crater (167.5 deg E, 42.5 deg N). This region has been identified previously, using radar and aging data. 2) A much larger and more diffuse region, covering approximately 730,000 sq km, centered near 310 deg E, 35 deg S, containing elevated rock abundance and numerous granular flow deposits on crater walls. The rock distributions in both regions favor certain slope azimuths over others, indicating a directional component to the formation of these deposits. The spatial distribution of rocks is consistent with the arrival of ejecta from the west and northwest at low angles (approximately 10-30 deg) above the horizon in both regions. The derived age and slope orientations of the deposits indicate that the deposits likely originated as ejecta from the Tycho impact event. Despite their similar origin, the deposits in the two regions show significant differences in the datasets. The Tycho crater antipode deposit covers a smaller area, but the deposits are pervasive and appear to be dominated by impact melts. By contrast, the nearside deposits cover a much larger area and numerous granular flows were triggered. However, the features in this region are less prominent with no evidence for the presence of impact melts. The two regions appear to be surface expressions of a distant impact event that can modify surfaces across wide regions, resulting in a variety of surface morphologies. The Tycho impact event may only be the most recent manifestation of these processes, which likely have played a role in the development of the regolith throughout lunar history

  15. Searching for water at the south pole of the Moon with a lunar impactor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerdt, B.; Alkalai, L.

    The idea that water on the Moon s surface would eventually migrate to the lunar poles and be cold-trapped there indefinitely was first proposed in the 1960 s and subsequent modeling has generally confirmed this possibility The existence of such polar water deposits is critical for planning future lunar exploration and it has important implications for lunar science as well However observations from the Earth and orbiting spacecraft have not been able to categorically confirm or deny the existence of ice in permanently shadowed depressions at the lunar poles The next generation of orbiters such as LRO Chandrayaan and SELENE while making important observations will be capable only of providing circumstantial evidence of water and its concentration and the challenges of landing and operating a spacecraft in the extreme conditions of permanent night are considerable We have studied a low-cost alternative approach similar to NASA s Deep Impact mission for enabling a direct detection of the existence of water in the upper few meters of the lunar subsurface Our mission uses a 1000-kg spacecraft to impact the lunar surface at 2 5-3 km sec from a geocentric trajectory This impact will excavate a crater 20 meters in diameter ejecting over 50 cubic meters of regolith Assuming a few volume percent water this ejecta would include several metric tons of ice Spectral evidence for water may be found across the electromagnetic spectrum from microwave and infrared to ultraviolet This could be derived from the immediate impact flash vapor produced through secondary

  16. Feldspathic Meteorites MIL 090034 and 090070: Late Additions to the Lunar Crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nyquist, L. E.; Shirai, N.; Yamaguchi, A.; Shih, C.-Y.; Park, J.; Ebihara, M.

    2016-01-01

    Our studies of the Miller Range lunar meteorites MIL 090034, 090036, and 090070 show them to be a diverse suite of rocks from the lunar highlands hereafter referred to as MIL 34, MIL 36, and MIL 70, resp. MIL34 and MIL70, the focus of this work, are crystalline melt breccias. Plagioclase compositions in both peak sharply around An96-97. Mg numbers of olivine vary from 58-65 with a few higher values. MIL36 is a regolith breccia. MIL 34 and MIL 70 have some of the highest Al2O3 abundances of lunar highland meteorites, indicating that they have among the largest modal abundances of plagioclase for lunar meteorites. They have lower Sc and Cr abundances than nearly all lunar highland meteorites except Dho 081, Dho 489 and Dho 733. MIL34 and MIL70 also have similar cosmic ray exposure (CRE) ages of approximately 1-2 Ma indicating they are launch paired. (MIL36 has a larger CRE age approximately greater than 70 Ma). Park et al. found a variation in Ar-Ar ages among subsamples of MIL 34 and MIL70, but preferred ages of 3500+/-110 Ma for the "Dark" phase of MIL 34 anorthite and 3520+/-30 Ma for the "Light" phase of MIL70. Bouvier et al. reported a Pb-Pb age of 3894+/-39 Ma for a feldspathic clast of MIL 34 and a similar age for a melt lithology. Here we reexamine the Rb-Sr and Sm-Nd isotopic data, which show complexities qualitatively consistent with those of the Ar-Ar and Pb-Pb data. The Sm-Nd data in particular suggest that the feldspathic compositions of MIL 34 and MIL 70 formed during initial lunar geochemical differentiation, and REE modeling suggests a relatively late-stage formation.

  17. Chlorine isotopic compositions of apatite in Apollo 14 rocks: Evidence for widespread vapor-phase metasomatism on the lunar nearside ∼4 billion years ago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Potts, Nicola J.; Barnes, Jessica J.; Tartèse, Romain; Franchi, Ian A.; Anand, Mahesh

    2018-06-01

    Compared to most other planetary materials in the Solar System, some lunar rocks display high δ37Cl signatures. Loss of Cl in a H ≪ Cl environment has been invoked to explain the heavy signatures observed in lunar samples, either during volcanic eruptions onto the lunar surface or during large scale degassing of the lunar magma ocean. To explore the conditions under which Cl isotope fractionation occurred in lunar basaltic melts, five Apollo 14 crystalline samples were selected (14053,19, 14072,13, 14073,9, 14310,171 along with basaltic clast 14321,1482) for in situ analysis of Cl isotopes using secondary ion mass spectrometry. Cl isotopes were measured within the mineral apatite, with δ37Cl values ranging from +14.6 ± 1.6‰ to +40.0 ± 2.9‰. These values expand the range previously reported for apatite in lunar rocks, and include some of the heaviest Cl isotope compositions measured in lunar samples to date. The data here do not display a trend between increasing rare earth elements contents and δ37Cl values, reported in previous studies. Other processes that can explain the wide inter- and intra-sample variability of δ37Cl values are explored. Magmatic degassing is suggested to have potentially played a role in fractionating Cl isotope in these samples. Degassing alone, however, could not create the wide variability in isotopic signatures. Our favored hypothesis, to explain small scale heterogeneity, is late-stage interaction with a volatile-rich gas phase, originating from devolatilization of lunar surface regolith rocks ∼4 billion years ago. This period coincides with vapor-induced metasomastism recorded in other lunar samples collected at the Apollo 16 and 17 landing sites, pointing to the possibility of widespread volatile-induced metasomatism on the lunar nearside at that time, potentially attributed to the Imbrium formation event.

  18. Rock fragment distributions and regolith evolution in the Ouachita Mountains, Arkansas, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jonathan D. Phillips; Ken Luckow; Daniel A. Marion; Kristin R. Adams

    2005-01-01

    Rock fragments in the regolith are a persistent property that reflects the combined influences of geologic controls, erosion, deposition, bioturbation, and weathering. The distribution of rock fragments in regoliths of the Ouachita Mountains, Arkansas, shows that sandstone fragments are common in all layers, even if sandstone is absent in parent material. Shale and...

  19. Measuring the Shock Stage of Asteroid Regolith Grains by Electron Back-Scattered Diffraction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zolensky, Michael; Martinez, James; Sitzman, Scott; Mikouchi, Takashi; Hagiya, Kenji; Ohsumi, Kazumasa; Terada, Yasuko; Yagi, Naoto; Komatsu, Mutsumi; Ozawa, Hikaru; hide

    2018-01-01

    We have been analyzing Itokawa samples in order to definitively establish the degree of shock experienced by the regolith of asteroid Itokawa, and to devise a bridge between shock determinations by standard light optical petrography, crystal structures as determined by electron and X-ray diffraction. These techniques would then be available for samples returned from other asteroid regoliths.

  20. Characterization of Fillite as a planetary soil simulant in support of rover mobility assessment in high-sinkage/high-slip environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Michael

    This thesis presents the results of a research program characterizing a soil simulant called Fillite, which is composed of alumino-silicate hollow microspheres harvested from the pulverized fuel ash of coal-fired power plants. Fillite is available in large quantities at a reasonable cost and it is chemically inert. Fillite has been selected by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Glenn Research Center to simulate high-sinkage/high-slip environment in a large test bed such as the ones encountered by the Spirit rover on Mars in 2009 when it became entrapped in a pocket of soft, loose regolith on Mars. The terms high-sinkage and high-slip used here describe the interaction of soils with typical rover wheels. High-sinkage refers to a wheel sinking with little to no applied force while high-slip refers to a spinning wheel with minimal traction. Standard material properties (density, specific gravity, compression index, Young's modulus, and Poisson's ratio) of Fillite were determined from a series of laboratory tests conducted in general accordance with ASTM standards. Tests were also performed to determine some less standard material properties of Fillite such as the small strain shear wave velocity, maximum shear modulus, and several pressure-sinkage parameters for use in pressure-sinkage models. The experiments include an extensive series of triaxial compression tests, bender element tests, and normal and shear bevameter tests. The unit weight of Fillite on Earth ranges between 3.9 and 4.8 kN/m 3, which is similar to that of Martian regolith (about 3.7 -- 5.6 kN/m3) on Mars and close to the range of the unit weight of lunar regolith (about 1.4 -- 2.9 kN/m3) on the Moon. The data presented here support that Fillite has many physical and mechanical properties that are similar to what is known about Martian regolith. These properties are also comparable to lunar regolith. Fillite is quite dilatant; its peak and critical angles of internal friction are

  1. The timeline of the lunar bombardment: Revisited

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morbidelli, A.; Nesvorny, D.; Laurenz, V.; Marchi, S.; Rubie, D. C.; Elkins-Tanton, L.; Wieczorek, M.; Jacobson, S.

    2018-05-01

    The timeline of the lunar bombardment in the first Gy of Solar System history remains unclear. Basin-forming impacts (e.g. Imbrium, Orientale), occurred 3.9-3.7 Gy ago, i.e. 600-800 My after the formation of the Moon itself. Many other basins formed before Imbrium, but their exact ages are not precisely known. There is an intense debate between two possible interpretations of the data: in the cataclysm scenario there was a surge in the impact rate approximately at the time of Imbrium formation, while in the accretion tail scenario the lunar bombardment declined since the era of planet formation and the latest basins formed in its tail-end. Here, we revisit the work of Morbidelli et al. (2012) that examined which scenario could be compatible with both the lunar crater record in the 3-4 Gy period and the abundance of highly siderophile elements (HSE) in the lunar mantle. We use updated numerical simulations of the fluxes of asteroids, comets and planetesimals leftover from the planet-formation process. Under the traditional assumption that the HSEs track the total amount of material accreted by the Moon since its formation, we conclude that only the cataclysm scenario can explain the data. The cataclysm should have started ∼ 3.95 Gy ago. However we also consider the possibility that HSEs are sequestered from the mantle of a planet during magma ocean crystallization, due to iron sulfide exsolution (O'Neil, 1991; Rubie et al., 2016). We show that this is likely true also for the Moon, if mantle overturn is taken into account. Based on the hypothesis that the lunar magma ocean crystallized about 100-150 My after Moon formation (Elkins-Tanton et al., 2011), and therefore that HSEs accumulated in the lunar mantle only after this timespan, we show that the bombardment in the 3-4 Gy period can be explained in the accretion tail scenario. This hypothesis would also explain why the Moon appears so depleted in HSEs relative to the Earth. We also extend our analysis of the

  2. Project Luna Succendo: The Lunar Evolutionary Growth-Optimized (LEGO) Reactor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bess, John Darrell

    A final design has been established for a basic Lunar Evolutionary Growth-Optimized (LEGO) Reactor using current and near-term technologies. The LEGO Reactor is a modular, fast-fission, heatpipe-cooled, clustered-reactor system for lunar-surface power generation. The reactor is divided into subcritical units that can be safely launched within lunar shipments from the Earth, and then emplaced directly into holes drilled into the lunar regolith to form a critical reactor assembly. The regolith would not just provide radiation shielding, but serve as neutron-reflector material as well. The reactor subunits are to be manufactured using proven and tested materials for use in radiation environments, such as uranium-dioxide fuel, stainless-steel cladding and structural support, and liquid-sodium heatpipes. The LEGO Reactor system promotes reliability, safety, and ease of manufacture and testing at the cost of an increase in launch mass per overall rated power level and a reduction in neutron economy when compared to a single-reactor system. A single unshielded LEGO Reactor subunit has an estimated mass of approximately 448 kg and provides 5 kWe using a free-piston Stirling space converter. The overall envelope for a single unit with fully extended radiator panels has a height of 8.77 m and a diameter of 0.50 m. The subunits can be placed with centerline distances of approximately 0.6 m in a hexagonal-lattice pattern to provide sufficient neutronic coupling while allowing room for heat rejection and interstitial control. A lattice of six subunits could provide sufficient power generation throughout the initial stages of establishing a lunar outpost. Portions of the reactor may be neutronically decoupled to allow for reduced power production during unmanned periods of base operations. During later stages of lunar-base development, additional subunits may be emplaced and coupled into the existing LEGO Reactor network Future improvements include advances in reactor control

  3. REE Partitioning in Lunar Minerals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rapp, J. F.; Lapen, T. J.; Draper, D. S.

    2015-01-01

    Rare earth elements (REE) are an extremely useful tool in modeling lunar magmatic processes. Here we present the first experimentally derived plagioclase/melt partition coefficients in lunar compositions covering the entire suite of REE. Positive europium anomalies are ubiquitous in the plagioclase-rich rocks of the lunar highlands, and complementary negative Eu anomalies are found in most lunar basalts. These features are taken as evidence of a large-scale differentiation event, with crystallization of a global-scale lunar magma ocean (LMO) resulting in a plagioclase flotation crust and a mafic lunar interior from which mare basalts were subsequently derived. However, the extent of the Eu anomaly in lunar rocks is variable. Fagan and Neal [1] reported highly anorthitic plagioclase grains in lunar impact melt rock 60635,19 that displayed negative Eu anomalies as well as the more usual positive anomalies. Indeed some grains in the sample are reported to display both positive and negative anomalies. Judging from cathodoluminescence images, these anomalies do not appear to be associated with crystal overgrowths or zones.

  4. Chronology of early lunar crust

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dasch, E.J.; Nyquist, L.E.; Ryder, G.

    1988-01-01

    The chronology of lunar rocks is summarized. The oldest pristine (i.e., lacking meteoritic contamination of admixed components) lunar rock, recently dated with Sm-Nd by Lugmair, is a ferroan anorthosite, with an age of 4.44 + 0.02 Ga. Ages of Mg-suite rocks (4.1 to 4.5 Ga) have large uncertainties, so that age differences between lunar plutonic rock suites cannot y