WorldWideScience

Sample records for lunar regolith surface

  1. 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.

  2. [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.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. [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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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...

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.)

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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...

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.)

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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...

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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.)

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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...

  5. 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...

  6. 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.

  7. 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...

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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...

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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)

  14. 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.

  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. 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.

  17. 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

  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. 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.

  20. Dielectric properties of lunar surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yushkova, O. V.; Kibardina, I. N.

    2017-03-01

    Measurements of the dielectric characteristics of lunar soil samples are analyzed in the context of dielectric theory. It has been shown that the real component of the dielectric permittivity and the loss tangent of rocks greatly depend on the frequency of the interacting electromagnetic field and the soil temperature. It follows from the analysis that one should take into account diurnal variations in the lunar surface temperature when interpreting the radar-sounding results, especially for the gigahertz radio range.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Apollo Missions to the Lunar Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graff, Paige V.

    2018-01-01

    Six Apollo missions to the Moon, from 1969-1972, enabled astronauts to collect and bring lunar rocks and materials from the lunar surface to Earth. Apollo lunar samples are curated by NASA Astromaterials at the NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston, TX. Samples continue to be studied and provide clues about our early Solar System. Learn more and view collected samples at: https://curator.jsc.nasa.gov/lunar.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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...

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  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. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Petrologic Characteristics of the Lunar Surface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xianmin; Pedrycz, Witold

    2015-11-27

    Petrologic analysis of the lunar surface is critical for determining lunar formation and evolution. Here, we report the first global petrologic map that includes the five most important lunar lithological units: the Ferroan Anorthositic (FAN) Unit, the Magnesian Suite (MS) Unit, the Alkali Suite (AS) Unit, the KREEP Basalt (KB) Unit and the Mare Basalt (MB) Unit. Based on the petrologic map and focusing on four long-debated and important issues related to lunar formation and evolution, we draw the following conclusions from the new insights into the global distribution of the five petrologic units: (1) there may be no petrogenetic relationship between MS rocks and KB; (2) there may be no petrogenetic link between MS and AS rocks; (3) the exposure of the KREEP component on the lunar surface is likely not a result of MB volcanism but is instead mainly associated with the combined action of plutonic intrusion, KREEP volcanism and celestial collision; (4) the impact size of the South Pole-Aitken basin is constrained, i.e., the basin has been excavated through the whole crust to exhume a vast majority of lower-crustal material and a very limited mantle components to the lunar surface.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. Lower-Cost, Relocatable Lunar Polar Lander and Lunar Surface Sample Return Probes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amato, G. Michael; Garvin, James B.; Burt, I. Joseph; Karpati, Gabe

    2011-01-01

    Key science and exploration objectives of lunar robotic precursor missions can be achieved with the Lunar Explorer (LEx) low-cost, robotic surface mission concept described herein. Selected elements of the LEx concept can also be used to create a lunar surface sample return mission that we have called Boomerang

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. Characterizing the effects of regolith surface roughness on photoemission from surfaces in space

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dove, A.; Horanyi, M.; Wang, X.

    2017-12-01

    Surfaces of airless bodies and spacecraft in space are exposed to a variety of charging environments. A balance of currents due to plasma bombardment, photoemission, electron and ion emission and collection, and secondary electron emission determines the surface's charge. Photoelectron emission is the dominant charging process on sunlit surfaces in the inner solar system due to the intense solar UV radiation. This can result in a net positive surface potential, with a cloud of photoelectrons immediately above the surface, called the photoelectron sheath. Conversely, the unlit side of the body will charge negatively due the collection of the fast-moving solar wind electrons. The interaction of charged dust grains with these positively and negatively charged surfaces, and within the photoelectron and plasma sheaths may explain the occurrence of dust lofting, levitation and transport above the lunar surface. The surface potential of exposed objects is also dependent on the material properties of their surfaces. Composition and particle size primarily affect the quantum efficiency of photoelectron generation; however, surface roughness can also control the charging process. In order to characterize these effects, we have conducted laboratory experiments to examine the role of surface roughness in generating photoelectrons in dedicated laboratory experiments using solid and dusty surfaces of the same composition (CeO2), and initial comparisons with JSC-1 lunar simulant. Using Langmuir probe measurements, we explore the measured potentials above insulating surfaces exposed to UV and an electric field, and we show that the photoemission current from a dusty surface is largely reduced due to its higher surface roughness, which causes a significant fraction of the emitted photoelectrons to be re-absorbed within the surface. We will discuss these results in context of similar situations on planetary surfaces.

  18. 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.

  19. 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...

  20. Scalable Lunar Surface Networks and Adaptive Orbit Access, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Innovative network architecture, protocols, and algorithms are proposed for both lunar surface networks and orbit access networks. Firstly, an overlaying...

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. A radiation analysis of lunar surface habitats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    De Angelis, G.; Wilson, J.W.; Tripathi, R.K.; Clowdsley, M.S.; Nealy, J.E.

    2003-01-01

    An analysis is performed on the radiation environment found on the surface of the Moon, and applied to different possible lunar base mission scenarios. An optimization technique has been used to minimize the astronaut radiation exposure and at the same time control the effect of shielding, in terms of mass addition and material choice, as a mission cost driver. The optimization process performs minimization of mass along all phases of a mission scenario, considered in terms of time frame, equipment, location, crew characteristics and performance required, radiation exposure annual and career limit constraints (those proposed in NCRP 132), and implementation of the ALARA principle. In the lunar environment manned habitats are to host future crews involved in the construction and/or in the utilization of moon based infrastructure. Three different kinds of lunar missions are considered in the analysis, Moon Base Construction Phase, during which astronauts are on the surface just to build an outpost for future resident crews, Moon Base Outpost Phase, during which astronaut crews are resident but continuing exploration and installation activities, and Moon Base Routine Phase, with shifting resident crews. In each scenario various kinds of habitats, from very simple shelters to more complex bases, are considered in detail (e.g. shape, thickness, materials, etc) with considerations of various shielding strategies. The results for all scenarios clearly showed that the direct exposure to the space environment like in transfers and EVAs phases gives the most of the dose, with the proposed shielded habitats and shelters giving quite a good protection from radiation. Operational constraints on hardware and scenarios have all been considered by the optimization techniques. Within the limits of this preliminary analysis, the three Moon Base related mission scenarios are perfectly feasible from the astronaut radiation safety point of view with the currently adopted and proposed

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. Lunar Surface Systems Supportability Technology Development Roadmap

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oeftering, Richard C.; Struk, Peter M.; Green, Jennifer L.; Chau, Savio N.; Curell, Philip C.; Dempsey, Cathy A.; Patterson, Linda P.; Robbins, William; Steele, Michael A.; DAnnunzio, Anthony; hide

    2011-01-01

    The Lunar Surface Systems Supportability Technology Development Roadmap is a guide for developing the technologies needed to enable the supportable, sustainable, and affordable exploration of the Moon and other destinations beyond Earth. Supportability is defined in terms of space maintenance, repair, and related logistics. This report considers the supportability lessons learned from NASA and the Department of Defense. Lunar Outpost supportability needs are summarized, and a supportability technology strategy is established to make the transition from high logistics dependence to logistics independence. This strategy will enable flight crews to act effectively to respond to problems and exploit opportunities in an environment of extreme resource scarcity and isolation. The supportability roadmap defines the general technology selection criteria. Technologies are organized into three categories: diagnostics, test, and verification; maintenance and repair; and scavenge and recycle. Furthermore, "embedded technologies" and "process technologies" are used to designate distinct technology types with different development cycles. The roadmap examines the current technology readiness level and lays out a four-phase incremental development schedule with selection decision gates. The supportability technology roadmap is intended to develop technologies with the widest possible capability and utility while minimizing the impact on crew time and training and remaining within the time and cost constraints of the program.

  7. Automated Hybrid Microwave Heating for Lunar Surface Solidification, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This SBIR project addresses the need for a system that will provide automated lunar surface stabilization via hybrid microwave heating. Surface stabilization is...

  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. Scalable Lunar Surface Networks and Adaptive Orbit Access, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Based on our proposed innovations and accomplished work in Phase I, we will focus on developing the new MAC protocol and hybrid routing protocol for lunar surface...

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Visibility of lunar surface features - Apollo 14 orbital observations and lunar landing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziedman, K.

    1972-01-01

    Description of an in-flight visibility test conducted during the Apollo 14 mission for the purpose of validating and extending the mathematical visibility models used previously in the course of the Apollo program to examine the constraints on descent operations imposed by lunar visibility limitations. Following a background review of the effects on mission planning of the visibility limitations due to downsun lunar surface detail 'washout' and a discussion of the visibility prediction techniques previously used for studying lunar visibility problems, the visibility test rationale and procedures are defined and the test results presented. The results appear to confirm the validity of the visibility prediction techniques employed in lunar visibility problem studies. These results provide also a basis for improving the accuracy of the prediction techniques by appropriate modifications.

  14. Lunar atmosphere. How surface composition and meteoroid impacts mediate sodium and potassium in the lunar exosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colaprete, A; Sarantos, M; Wooden, D H; Stubbs, T J; Cook, A M; Shirley, M

    2016-01-15

    Despite being trace constituents of the lunar exosphere, sodium and potassium are the most readily observed species due to their bright line emission. Measurements of these species by the Ultraviolet and Visible Spectrometer (UVS) on the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) have revealed unambiguous temporal and spatial variations indicative of a strong role for meteoroid bombardment and surface composition in determining the composition and local time dependence of the Moon's exosphere. Observations show distinct lunar day (monthly) cycles for both species as well as an annual cycle for sodium. The first continuous measurements for potassium show a more repeatable variation across lunations and an enhancement over KREEP (Potassium Rare Earth Elements and Phosphorus) surface regions, revealing a strong dependence on surface composition. Copyright © 2016, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  15. Lunar Surface Potential Increases during Terrestrial Bow Shock Traversals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collier, Michael R.; Stubbs, Timothy J.; Hills, H. Kent; Halekas, Jasper; Farrell, William M.; Delory, Greg T.; Espley, Jared; Freeman, John W.; Vondrak, Richard R.; Kasper, Justin

    2009-01-01

    Since the Apollo era the electric potential of the Moon has been a subject of interest and debate. Deployed by three Apollo missions, Apollo 12, Apollo 14 and Apollo 15, the Suprathermal Ion Detector Experiment (SIDE) determined the sunlit lunar surface potential to be about +10 Volts using the energy spectra of lunar ionospheric thermal ions accelerated toward the Moon. We present an analysis of Apollo 14 SIDE "resonance" events that indicate the lunar surface potential increases when the Moon traverses the dawn bow shock. By analyzing Wind spacecraft crossings of the terrestrial bow shock at approximately this location and employing current balancing models of the lunar surface, we suggest causes for the increasing potential. Determining the origin of this phenomenon will improve our ability to predict the lunar surface potential in support of human exploration as well as provide models for the behavior of other airless bodies when they traverse similar features such as interplanetary shocks, both of which are goals of the NASA Lunar Science Institute's Dynamic Response of the Environment At the Moon (DREAM) team.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Hydrogen and fluorine in the surfaces of lunar samples

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Leich, D.A.; Goldberg, R.H.; Burnett, D.S.; Tombrello, T.A.

    1974-04-01

    The resonant nuclear reaction F-19 (p, alpha gamma)O-16 was used to perform depth sensitive analyses for both fluorine and hydrogen in lunar samples. The resonance at 0.83 MeV (center-of-mass) in this reaction was applied to the measurement of the distribution of trapped solar protons in lunar samples to depths of about 1 / 2 micrometer. These results are interpreted in terms of terrestrial H 2 O surface contamination and a redistribution of the implanted solar H which has been influenced by heavy radiation damage in the surface region. Results are also presented for an experiment to test the penetration of H 2 O into laboratory glass samples which have been irradiated with O-16 to simulate the radiation damaged surfaces of lunar glasses. Fluorine determinations were performed in a 1 pm surface layer on lunar samples using the same F-19(alpha gamma)O-16 resonance. The data are discussed from the standpoint of lunar fluorine and Teflon contamination. (U.S.)

  20. 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. ...

  1. A new moonquake catalog from Apollo 17 seismic data I: Lunar Seismic Profiling Experiment: Thermal moonquakes and implications for surface processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, R. C.; Dimech, J. L.; Phillips, D.; Molaro, J.; Schmerr, N. C.

    2017-12-01

    Apollo 17's Lunar Seismic Profiling Experiment's (LSPE) primary objective was to constrain the near-surface velocity structure at the landing site using active sources detected by a 100 m-wide triangular geophone array. The experiment was later operated in "listening mode," and early studies of these data revealed the presence of thermal moonquakes - short-duration seismic events associated with terminator crossings. However, the full data set has never been systematically analyzed for natural seismic signal content. In this study, we analyze 8 months of continuous LSPE data using an automated event detection technique that has previously successfully been applied to the Apollo 16 Passive Seismic Experiment data. We detected 50,000 thermal moonquakes from three distinct event templates, representing impulsive, intermediate, and emergent onset of seismic energy, which we interpret as reflecting their relative distance from the array. Impulsive events occur largely at sunrise, possibly representing the thermal "pinging" of the nearby lunar lander, while emergent events occur at sunset, possibly representing cracking or slumping in more distant surface rocks and regolith. Preliminary application of an iterative event location algorithm to a subset of the impulsive waveforms supports this interpretation. We also perform 3D modeling of the lunar surface to explore the relative contribution of the lander, known rocks and surrounding topography to the thermal state of the regolith in the vicinity of the Apollo 17 landing site over the course of the lunar diurnal cycle. Further development of both this model and the event location algorithm may permit definitive discrimination between different types of local diurnal events e.g. lander noise, thermally-induced rock breakdown, or fault creep on the nearby Lee-Lincoln scarp. These results could place important constraints on both the contribution of seismicity to regolith production, and the age of young lobate scarps.

  2. Data Analysis Techniques for a Lunar Surface Navigation System Testbed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chelmins, David; Sands, O. Scott; Swank, Aaron

    2011-01-01

    NASA is interested in finding new methods of surface navigation to allow astronauts to navigate on the lunar surface. In support of the Vision for Space Exploration, the NASA Glenn Research Center developed the Lunar Extra-Vehicular Activity Crewmember Location Determination System and performed testing at the Desert Research and Technology Studies event in 2009. A significant amount of sensor data was recorded during nine tests performed with six test subjects. This paper provides the procedure, formulas, and techniques for data analysis, as well as commentary on applications.

  3. Mossbauer analysis of Luna 16 lunar surface material

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nady, D. L.; Cher, L.; Kulcsar, K.

    1974-01-01

    Samples of Apollo 11 lunar surface material were studied by the Mossbauer effect. Owing to the small number of other resonant isotopes, all measurements were made with Fe-57 nuclei. The principal constituents of the material were as follows: Iron containing silicates (olivine, pyroxene, and so on), ilmenite (FeTiO3), and metallic iron.

  4. Advanced construction management for lunar base construction - Surface operations planner

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kehoe, Robert P.

    1992-01-01

    The study proposes a conceptual solution and lays the framework for developing a new, sophisticated and intelligent tool for a lunar base construction crew to use. This concept integrates expert systems for critical decision making, virtual reality for training, logistics and laydown optimization, automated productivity measurements, and an advanced scheduling tool to form a unique new planning tool. The concept features extensive use of computers and expert systems software to support the actual work, while allowing the crew to control the project from the lunar surface. Consideration is given to a logistics data base, laydown area management, flexible critical progress scheduler, video simulation of assembly tasks, and assembly information and tracking documentation.

  5. Distribution of iron and titanium on the lunar surface from lunar prospector gamma ray spectra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Prettyman, T.H.; Feldman, W.C.; Lawrence, David J.; Elphic, R.C.; Gasnault, O.M.; Maurice, S.; Moore, K.R.; Binder, A.B.

    2001-01-01

    Gamma ray pulse height spectra acquired by the Lunar Prospector (LP) Gamma-Ray Spectrometer (GRS) contain information on the abundance of major elements in the lunar surface, including O, Si, Ti, Al, Fe, Mg, Ca, K, and Th. With the exception of Th and K, prompt gamma rays produced by cosmic ray interactions with surface materials are used to determine elemental abundance. Most of these gamma rays are produced by inelastic scattering of fast neutrons and by neutron capture. The production of neutron-induced gamma rays reaches a maximum deep below the surface (e.g. ∼140 g/cm 2 for inelastic scattering and ∼50 g/cm 2 for capture). Consequently, gamma rays sense the bulk composition of lunar materials, in contrast to optical methods (e.g. Clementine Spectral Reflectance (CSR)), which only sample the top few microns. Because most of the gamma rays are produced deep beneath the surface, few escape unscattered and the continuum of scattered gamma rays dominates the spectrum. In addition, due to the resolution of the spectrometer, there are few well-isolated peaks and peak fitting algorithms must be used to deconvolve the spectrum in order to determine the contribution of individual elements.

  6. Reference reactor module for NASA's lunar surface fission power system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Poston, David I.; Kapernick, Richard J.; Dixon, David D.; Werner, James; Qualls, Louis; Radel, Ross

    2009-01-01

    Surface fission power systems on the Moon and Mars may provide the first US application of fission reactor technology in space since 1965. The Affordable Fission Surface Power System (AFSPS) study was completed by NASA/DOE to determine the cost of a modest performance, low-technical risk surface power system. The AFSPS concept is now being further developed within the Fission Surface Power (FSP) Project, which is a near-term technology program to demonstrate system-level TRL-6 by 2013. This paper describes the reference FSP reactor module concept, which is designed to provide a net power of 40 kWe for 8 years on the lunar surface; note, the system has been designed with technologies that are fully compatible with a Martian surface application. The reactor concept uses stainless-steel based. UO 2 -fueled, pumped-NaK fission reactor coupled to free-piston Stirling converters. The reactor shielding approach utilizes both in-situ and launched shielding to keep the dose to astronauts much lower than the natural background radiation on the lunar surface. The ultimate goal of this work is to provide a 'workhorse' power system that NASA can utilize in near-term and future Lunar and Martian mission architectures, with the eventual capability to evolve to very high power, low mass systems, for either surface, deep space, and/or orbital missions.

  7. Surface chemistry of selected lunar regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bielefeld, M.J.; Reedy, R.C.; Metzger, A.E.; Trombka, J.I.; Arnold, J.R.

    1976-01-01

    A completely new analysis has been carried out on the data from the Apollo 15 and 16 γ ray spectrometer experiments. The components of the continuum background have been estimated. The elements Th, K, Fe and Mg give useful results; results for Ti are significant only for a few high Ti regions. Errors are given, and the results are checked by other methods. Concentrations are reported for about sixty lunar regions; the ground track has been subdivided in various ways. The borders of the maria seem well-defined chemically, while the distribution of KREEP is broad. This wide distribution requires emplacement of KREEP before the era of mare formation. Its high concentration in western mare soils seems to require major vertical mixing

  8. 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

    For long-duration missions on other planetary bodies, the use of in situ materials will become increasingly critical. As human presence on these bodies expands, so must the breadth of the structures required to accommodate them including habitats, laboratories, berms, radiation shielding for natural radiation and surface reactors, garages, solar storm shelters, greenhouses, etc. Planetary surface structure manufacturing and assembly technologies that incorporate in situ resources provide options for autonomous, affordable, pre-positioned environments with radiation shielding features and protection from micrometeorites, exhaust plume debris, and other hazards. The ability to use in-situ materials to construct these structures will provide a benefit in the reduction of up-mass that would otherwise make long-term Moon or Mars structures cost prohibitive. The ability to fabricate structures in situ brings with it the ability to repair these structures, which allows for the self-sufficiency and sustainability necessary for long-duration habitation. Previously, under the auspices of the MSFC In-Situ Fabrication and Repair (ISFR) project and more recently, under the jointly-managed MSFC/KSC Additive Construction with Mobile Emplacement (ACME) project, the MSFC Surface Structures Group has been developing materials and construction technologies to support future planetary habitats with in-situ resources. One such additive construction technology is known as Contour Crafting. This paper presents the results to date of these efforts, including development of novel nozzle concepts for advanced layer deposition using this process. Conceived initially for rapid development of cementitious structures on Earth, it also lends itself exceptionally well to the automated fabrication of planetary surface structures using minimally processed regolith as aggregate, and binders developed from in situ materials as well. This process has been used successfully in the fabrication of

  9. Remote compositional mapping of lunar titanium and surface maturity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, J. R.; Larson, S. M.; Singer, Robert B.

    1991-01-01

    Lunar ilmenite (FeTiO3) is a potential resource capable of providing oxygen for life support and spacecraft propellant for future lunar bases. Estimates of TiO2 content in mature mare soils can be made using an empirical relation between the 400/500 nm reflectance ratio and TiO2 wt percent. A TiO2 abundance map was constructed for the entire near-side lunar maria accurate to + or - 2 wt percent TiO2 using CCD images obtained at the Tumamoc Hill 0.5 m telescope in Tucson, employing bandpass filters centered at 400 and 560 nm. Highest TiO2 regions in the maria are located in western Mare Tranquillitatis. Greater contrast differences between regions on the lunar surface can be obtained using 400/730 nm ratio images. The relation might well be refined to accommodate this possibly more sensitive indicator of TiO2 content. Another potential lunar resource is solar wind-implanted He-3 which may be used as a fuel for fusion reactors. Relative soil maturity, as determined by agglutinate content, can be estimated from 950/560 nm ration images. Immature soils appear darker in this ratio since such soils contain abundant pyroxene grains which cause strong absorption centered near 950 nm due Fe(2+) crystal field transitions. A positive correlation exists between the amount of He-3 and TiO2 content in lunar soils, suggesting that regions high in TiO2 should also be high in He-3. Reflectance spectrophotometry in the region 320 to 870 nm was also obtained for several regions. Below about 340 nm, these spectra show variations in relative reflectance that are caused by as yet unassigned near-UV absorptions due to compositional differences.

  10. Distillation Designs for the Lunar Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boul, Peter J.; Lange,Kevin E.; Conger, Bruce; Anderson, Molly

    2010-01-01

    Gravity-based distillation methods may be applied to the purification of wastewater on the lunar base. These solutions to water processing are robust physical separation techniques, which may be more advantageous than many other techniques for their simplicity in design and operation. The two techniques can be used in conjunction with each other to obtain high purity water. The components and feed compositions for modeling waste water streams are presented in conjunction with the Aspen property system for traditional stage distillation. While the individual components for each of the waste streams will vary naturally within certain bounds, an analog model for waste water processing is suggested based on typical concentration ranges for these components. Target purity levels for recycled water are determined for each individual component based on NASA s required maximum contaminant levels for potable water Optimum parameters such as reflux ratio, feed stage location, and processing rates are determined with respect to the power consumption of the process. Multistage distillation is evaluated for components in wastewater to determine the minimum number of stages necessary for each of 65 components in humidity condensate and urine wastewater mixed streams.

  11. Gardening process of lunar surface layer inferred from the galactic cosmic-ray exposure ages of lunar samples

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Iriyama, Jun; Honda, Masatake.

    1979-01-01

    From the cosmic-ray exposure age data, (time scale 10 7 - 10 8 years), of the lunar surface materials, we discuss the gardening process of the lunar surface layer caused by the meteoroid impact cratering. At steady state, it is calculated that, in the region within 10 - 50 m of the surface, a mixing rate of 10 -4 to 10 -5 mm/yr is necessary to match the exposure ages. Observed exposure ages of the lunar samples could be explained by the gardening effect calculated using a crater formation rate which is slightly modified from the current crater population data. (author)

  12. Lunar rock surfaces as detectors of solar processes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hartung, J.B.; Hunter College, New York, NY)

    1980-01-01

    Lunar rock surfaces exposed at or just below the lunar surface are considered as detectors of the solar wind, solar flares and solar-derived magnetic fields through their interactions with galactic cosmic rays. The degradation of the solar detector capabilities of lunar surface rocks by meteoroid impact erosion, accreta deposition, loose dust, and sputtering, amorphous layer formation and accelerated diffusion due to solar particles and illumination is discussed, and it is noted that the complex interactions of factors affecting the outer micron of exposed surface material has so far prevented the development of a satisfactory model for a particle detector on the submicron scale. Methods for the determination of surface exposure ages based on the accumulation of light solar wind noble gases, Fe and Mg, impact craters, solar flare tracks, and cosmogenic Kr isotopes are examined, and the systematic variations in the ages determined by the various clocks are discussed. It is concluded that a means of obtaining satisfactory quantitative rate or flux data has not yet been established

  13. Scalable Lunar Surface Networks and Adaptive Orbit Access

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xudong

    2015-01-01

    Teranovi Technologies, Inc., has developed innovative network architecture, protocols, and algorithms for both lunar surface and orbit access networks. A key component of the overall architecture is a medium access control (MAC) protocol that includes a novel mechanism of overlaying time division multiple access (TDMA) and carrier sense multiple access with collision avoidance (CSMA/CA), ensuring scalable throughput and quality of service. The new MAC protocol is compatible with legacy Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) 802.11 networks. Advanced features include efficiency power management, adaptive channel width adjustment, and error control capability. A hybrid routing protocol combines the advantages of ad hoc on-demand distance vector (AODV) routing and disruption/delay-tolerant network (DTN) routing. Performance is significantly better than AODV or DTN and will be particularly effective for wireless networks with intermittent links, such as lunar and planetary surface networks and orbit access networks.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. A Lunar Surface System Supportability Technology Development Roadmap

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oeftering, Richard C.; Struk, Peter M.; Taleghani, barmac K.

    2011-01-01

    This paper discusses the establishment of a Supportability Technology Development Roadmap as a guide for developing capabilities intended to allow NASA s Constellation program to enable a supportable, sustainable and affordable exploration of the Moon and Mars. Presented is a discussion of supportability, in terms of space facility maintenance, repair and related logistics and a comparison of how lunar outpost supportability differs from the International Space Station. Supportability lessons learned from NASA and Department of Defense experience and their impact on a future lunar outpost is discussed. A supportability concept for future missions to the Moon and Mars that involves a transition from a highly logistics dependent to a logistically independent operation is discussed. Lunar outpost supportability capability needs are summarized and a supportability technology development strategy is established. The resulting Lunar Surface Systems Supportability Strategy defines general criteria that will be used to select technologies that will enable future flight crews to act effectively to respond to problems and exploit opportunities in an environment of extreme resource scarcity and isolation. This strategy also introduces the concept of exploiting flight hardware as a supportability resource. The technology roadmap involves development of three mutually supporting technology categories, Diagnostics Test and Verification, Maintenance and Repair, and Scavenging and Recycling. The technology roadmap establishes two distinct technology types, "Embedded" and "Process" technologies, with different implementation and thus different criteria and development approaches. The supportability technology roadmap addresses the technology readiness level, and estimated development schedule for technology groups that includes down-selection decision gates that correlate with the lunar program milestones. The resulting supportability technology roadmap is intended to develop a set

  18. Low-frequency Radio Observatory on the Lunar Surface (LROLS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacDowall, Robert; Network for Exploration and Space Science (NESS)

    2018-06-01

    A radio observatory on the lunar surface will provide the capability to image solar radio bursts and other sources. Radio burst imaging will improve understanding of radio burst mechanisms, particle acceleration, and space weather. Low-frequency observations (less than ~20 MHz) must be made from space, because lower frequencies are blocked by Earth’s ionosphere. Solar radio observations do not mandate an observatory on the farside of the Moon, although such a location would permit study of less intense solar bursts because the Moon occults the terrestrial radio frequency interference. The components of the lunar radio observatory array are: the antenna system consisting of 10 – 100 antennas distributed over a square kilometer or more; the system to transfer the radio signals from the antennas to the central processing unit; electronics to digitize the signals and possibly to calculate correlations; storage for the data until it is down-linked to Earth. Such transmission requires amplification and a high-gain antenna system or possibly laser comm. For observatories on the lunar farside a satellite or other intermediate transfer system is required to direct the signal to Earth. On the ground, the aperture synthesis analysis is completed to display the radio image as a function of time. Other requirements for lunar surface systems include the power supply, utilizing solar arrays with batteries to maintain the system at adequate thermal levels during the lunar night. An alternative would be a radioisotope thermoelectric generator requiring less mass. The individual antennas might be designed with their own solar arrays and electronics to transmit data to the central processing unit, but surviving lunar night would be a challenge. Harnesses for power and data transfer from the central processing unit to the antennas are an alternative, but a harness-based system complicates deployment. The concept of placing the antennas and harnesses on rolls of polyimide and

  19. Interplanetary and lunar surface SP-100 nuclear power applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Josloff, A.T.; Shepard, N.F.; Smith, M.; Stephen, J.D.

    1992-01-01

    This paper describes how the SP-100 Space Reactor Power System (SRPS) can be tailored to meet the specific requirements for a lunar surface power system to meet the needs of the consolidation and utilization phases outlined in the 90-day NASA SEI study report. This same basic power system can also be configured to obtain the low specific masses needed to enable robotic interplanetary science missions employing Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP). In both cases it is shown that the SP-100 SRPS can meet the specific requirements. For interplanetary NEP missions, performance upgrades currently being developed in the area of light weight radiators and improved thermoelectric material are assumed to be technology ready in the year 2000 time frame. For lunar applications, some system rearrangement and enclosure of critical components are necessary modifications to the present baseline design

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. Multi-Beam Surface Lidar for Lunar and Planetary Mapping

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bufton, Jack L.; Garvin, James B.

    1998-01-01

    Surface lidar techniques are now being demonstrated in low Earth orbit with a single beam of pulsed laser radiation at 1064 nm that profiles the vertical structure of Earth surface landforms along the nadir track of a spacecraft. In addition, a profiling laser altimeter, called MOLA, is operating in elliptical Martian orbit and returning surface topography data. These instruments form the basis for suggesting an improved lidar instrument that employs multiple beams for extension of sensor capabilities toward the goal of true, 3-dimensional mapping of the Moon or other similar planetary surfaces. In general the lidar waveform acquired with digitization of a laser echo can be used for laser distance measurement (i.e. range-to-the-surface) by time-of-flight measurement and for surface slope and shape measurements by examining the detailed lidar waveform. This is particularly effective when the intended target is the lunar surface or another planetary body free of any atmosphere. The width of the distorted return pulse is a first order measure of the surface incidence angle, a combination of surface slope and laser beam pointing. Assuming an independent and absolute (with respect to inertial space) measurement of laser beam pointing on the spacecraft, it is possible to derive a surface slope with-respect-to the mean planetary surface or its equipotential gravity surface. Higher-order laser pulse distortions can be interpreted in terms of the vertical relief of the surface or reflectivity variations within the area of the laser beam footprint on the surface.

  4. Evaluation of Surface Modification as a Lunar Dust Mitigation Strategy for Thermal Control Surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaier, James R.; Waters, Deborah L.; Misconin, Robert M.; Banks, Bruce A.; Crowder, Mark

    2011-01-01

    Three surface treatments were evaluated for their ability to lower the adhesion between lunar simulant dust and AZ93, AlFEP, and AgFEP thermal control surfaces under simulated lunar conditions. Samples were dusted in situ and exposed to a standardized puff of nitrogen gas. Thermal performance before dusting, after dusting, and after part of the dust was removed by the puff of gas, were compared to perform the assessment. None of the surface treatments was found to significantly affect the adhesion of lunar simulants to AZ93 thermal control paint. Oxygen ion beam texturing also did not lower the adhesion of lunar simulant dust to AlFEP or AgFEP. But a workfunction matching coating and a proprietary Ball Aerospace surface treatment were both found to significantly lower the adhesion of lunar simulants to AlFEP and AgFEP. Based on these results, it is recommended that all these two techniques be further explored as dust mitigation coatings for AlFEP and AgFEP thermal control surfaces.

  5. High Surface Area Iridium Anodes and Melt Containers for Molten Oxide Electrolysis, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Direct electrochemical reduction of molten regolith is the most attractive method of oxygen production on the lunar surface, because no additional chemical reagents...

  6. A Survey of Ballistic Transfers to the Lunar Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Rodney L.; Parker, Jeffrey S.

    2011-01-01

    In this study techniques are developed which allow an analysis of a range of different types of transfer trajectories from the Earth to the lunar surface. Trajectories ranging from those obtained using the invariant manifolds of unstable orbits to those derived from collision orbits are analyzed. These techniques allow the computation of trajectories encompassing low-energy trajectories as well as more direct transfers. The range of possible trajectory options is summarized, and a broad range of trajectories that exist as a result of the Sun's influence are computed and analyzed. The results are then classified by type, and trades between different measures of cost are discussed.

  7. 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

  8. Benefits of Using a Mars Forward Strategy for Lunar Surface Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulqueen, Jack; Griffin, Brand; Smitherman, David; Maples, Dauphne

    2009-01-01

    This paper identifies potential risk reduction, cost savings and programmatic procurement benefits of a Mars Forward Lunar Surface System architecture that provides commonality or evolutionary development paths for lunar surface system elements applicable to Mars surface systems. The objective of this paper is to identify the potential benefits for incorporating a Mars Forward development strategy into the planned Project Constellation Lunar Surface System Architecture. The benefits include cost savings, technology readiness, and design validation of systems that would be applicable to lunar and Mars surface systems. The paper presents a survey of previous lunar and Mars surface systems design concepts and provides an assessment of previous conclusions concerning those systems in light of the current Project Constellation Exploration Architectures. The operational requirements for current Project Constellation lunar and Mars surface system elements are compared and evaluated to identify the potential risk reduction strategies that build on lunar surface systems to reduce the technical and programmatic risks for Mars exploration. Risk reduction for rapidly evolving technologies is achieved through systematic evolution of technologies and components based on Moore's Law superimposed on the typical NASA systems engineering project development "V-cycle" described in NASA NPR 7120.5. Risk reduction for established or slowly evolving technologies is achieved through a process called the Mars-Ready Platform strategy in which incremental improvements lead from the initial lunar surface system components to Mars-Ready technologies. The potential programmatic benefits of the Mars Forward strategy are provided in terms of the transition from the lunar exploration campaign to the Mars exploration campaign. By utilizing a sequential combined procurement strategy for lunar and Mars exploration surface systems, the overall budget wedges for exploration systems are reduced and the

  9. Landing Site Selection and Surface Traverse Planning using the Lunar Mapping & Modeling Portal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Law, E.; Chang, G.; Bui, B.; Sadaqathullah, S.; Kim, R.; Dodge, K.; Malhotra, S.

    2013-12-01

    Introduction: The Lunar Mapping and Modeling Portal (LMMP), is a web-based Portal and a suite of interactive visualization and analysis tools for users to access mapped lunar data products (including image mosaics, digital elevation models, etc.) from past and current lunar missions (e.g., Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, Apollo, etc.), and to perform in-depth analyses to support lunar surface mission planning and system design for future lunar exploration and science missions. It has been widely used by many scientists mission planners, as well as educators and public outreach (e.g., Google Lunar XPRICE teams, RESOLVE project, museums etc.) This year, LMMP was used by the Lunar and Planetary Institute (LPI)'s Lunar Exploration internship program to perform lighting analysis and local hazard assessments, such as, slope, surface roughness and crater/boulder distribution to research landing sites and surface pathfinding and traversal. Our talk will include an overview of LMMP, a demonstration of the tools as well as a summary of the LPI Lunar Exploration summer interns' experience in using those tools.

  10. Autonomous Utility Connector for Lunar Surface Systems, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Lunar dust has been identified as a significant and present challenge in future exploration missions. The interlocking, angular nature of Lunar dust and its broad...

  11. 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.

  12. Study on Alternative Cargo Launch Options from the Lunar Surface

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cheryl A. Blomberg; Zamir A. Zulkefli; Spencer W. Rich; Steven D. Howe

    2013-07-01

    In the future, there will be a need for constant cargo launches from Earth to Mars in order to build, and then sustain, a Martian base. Currently, chemical rockets are used for space launches. These are expensive and heavy due to the amount of necessary propellant. Nuclear thermal rockets (NTRs) are the next step in rocket design. Another alternative is to create a launcher on the lunar surface that uses magnetic levitation to launch cargo to Mars in order to minimize the amount of necessary propellant per mission. This paper investigates using nuclear power for six different cargo launching alternatives, as well as the orbital mechanics involved in launching cargo to a Martian base from the moon. Each alternative is compared to the other alternative launchers, as well as compared to using an NTR instead. This comparison is done on the basis of mass that must be shipped from Earth, the amount of necessary propellant, and the number of equivalent NTR launches. Of the options, a lunar coil launcher had a ship mass that is 12.7% less than the next best option and 17 NTR equivalent launches, making it the best of the presented six options.

  13. 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....

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. Experimental Investigation of Space Radiation Processing in Lunar Soil Ilmenite: Combining Perspectives from Surface Science and Transmission Electron Microscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christoffersen, R.; Keller, L. P.; Rahman, Z.; Baragiola, R.

    2010-01-01

    Energetic ions mostly from the solar wind play a major role in lunar space weathering because they contribute structural and chemical changes to the space-exposed surfaces of lunar regolith grains. In mature mare soils, ilmenite (FeTiO3) grains in the finest size fraction have been shown in transmission electron microscope (TEM) studies to exhibit key differences in their response to space radiation processing relative to silicates [1,2,3]. In ilmenite, solar ion radiation alters host grain outer margins to produce 10-100 nm thick layers that are microstructurally complex, but dominantly crystalline compared to the amorphous radiation-processed rims on silicates [1,2,3]. Spatially well-resolved analytical TEM measurements also show nm-scale compositional and chemical state changes in these layers [1,3]. These include shifts in Fe/Ti ratio from strong surface Fe-enrichment (Fe/Ti >> 1), to Fe depletion (Fe/Ti < 1) at 40-50 nm below the grain surface [1,3]. These compositional changes are not observed in the radiation-processed rims on silicates [4]. Several mechanism(s) to explain the overall relations in the ilmenite grain rims by radiation processing and/or additional space weathering processes were proposed by [1], and remain under current consideration [3]. A key issue has concerned the ability of ion radiation processing alone to produce some of the deeper- penetrating compositional changes. In order to provide some experimental constraints on these questions, we have performed a combined X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and field-emission scanning transmission electron (FE-STEM) study of experimentally ion-irradiated ilmenite. A key feature of this work is the combination of analytical techniques sensitive to changes in the irradiated samples at depth scales going from the immediate surface (approx.5 nm; XPS), to deeper in the grain interior (5-100 nm; FE-STEM).

  17. 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.

  18. Specific heats of lunar surface materials from 90 to 350 degrees Kelvin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robie, R.A.; Hemingway, B.S.; Wilson, W.H.

    1970-01-01

    The specific heats of lunar samples 10057 and 10084 returned by the Apollo 11 mission have been measured between 90 and 350 degrees Kelvin by use of an adiabatic calorimeter. The samples are representative of type A vesicular basalt-like rocks and of finely divided lunar soil. The specific heat of these materials changes smoothly from about 0.06 calorie per gram per degree at 90 degrees Kelvin to about 0.2 calorie per gram per degree at 350 degrees Kelvin. The thermal parameter ??=(k??C)-1/2 for the lunar surface will accordingly vary by a factor of about 2 between lunar noon and midnight.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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)

  2. Electron content near the lunar surface using dual-frequency VLBI tracking data in a single lunar orbiter mission

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang, Zhen; Wang, Na; Ping, Jin-Song

    2015-01-01

    In VLBI observations of Vstar, a subsatellite of the Japanese lunar mission SELENE, there were opportunities for lunar grazing occultation when Vstar was very close to the limb of the Moon. This kind of chance made it possible to probe the thin plasma layer above the Moon's surface as a meaningful by-product of VLBI, by using the radio occultation method with coherent radio waves from the S/X bands. The dual-frequency measurements were carried out at Earth-based VLBI stations. In the line-of-sight direction between the satellite and the ground-based tracking station where VLBI measurements were made, the effects of the terrestrial ionosphere, interplanetary plasma and the thin lunar ionosphere mixed together in the combined observables of dual-frequency Doppler shift and phase shift. To separate the variation of the ionospheric total electron content (TEC) near the surface of the Moon from the mixed signal, the influences of the terrestrial ionosphere and interplanetary plasma have been removed by using an extrapolation method based on a short-term trend. The lunar TEC is estimated from the dual-frequency observation for Vstar from UT 22:18 to UT 22:20 on 2008 June 28 at several tracking stations. The TEC results obtained from VLBI sites are identical, however, they are not as remarkable as the result obtained at the Usuda deep space tracking station. (paper)

  3. 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.

  4. 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.)

  5. 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.

  6. Development of a Lunar Surface Architecture Using the Deep Space Gateway

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corrigan, A. M.; Kitmanyen, V. A.; Prakash, A.

    2018-02-01

    Prior to sending crews to Mars, the ability to perform activities intended for martian missions must first be thoroughly tested and successfully demonstrated in a similar environment. This paper outlines a lunar surface architecture to meet this goal.

  7. 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.

  8. Autonomous Utility Connector for Lunar Surface Systems, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Lunar dust has been identified as a significant and present challenge in future exploration missions. Significant development is called for in the area of devices...

  9. Understanding Regolith Physical Properties of Atmosphereless Solar System Bodies Based on Remote Sensing Photopolarimetric Observations: Evidence for Europa's Porous Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, R. M.; Boryta, M. D.; Hapke, B. W.; Manatt, K. S.; Shkuratov, Y.; Psarev, V.; Vandervoort, K.; Kroner, D. O.; Nebedum, A.; Vides, C.; Quinones, J.

    2017-12-01

    We studied the polarization and reflective properties of a suite of planetary regolith analogues with physical characteristics that might be expected to be found on a high albedo atmosphereless solar system body (ASSB). The angular scattering properties of thirteen well-sorted particle size fractions of aluminum oxide (Al2O3) were measured in the laboratory with a goniometric photopolarimeter (GPP) of unique design. Our results provide insight in support of efforts to understand the unusual reflectance and negative polarization behavior observed near small phase angles that has been reported over several decades on highly reflective ASSBs such as the asteroids 44 Nysa, 64 Angelina (Harris et al., 1989) and the Galilean satellites Io, Europa and Ganymede (Rosenbush et al., 1997; Mishchenko et al., 2006). Our measurements are consistent with the hypothesis that the surfaces of these ASSBs effectively scatter electromagnetic radiation as if they were extremely fine grained with void space > 95%, and grain sizes of the order landing on Europa's surface would require wheel or footpads that would protect it from settling deeply into the surface. These results also have relevance to the field of terrestrial geo-engineering particularly to proposals for modifying Earth's radiation balance by injecting high albedo Al2O3 particulates into Earth's atmosphere for the purpose of Solar Radiation Management by reflecting sunlight back into space hence, offsetting the global warming effects of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions such as carbon dioxide(Teller et al., 1997). This work partially supported by the Cassini Saturn Orbiter Progrem Harris et al., 1989 . Icarus 81, 365-374. Mishchenko et al., 2006 Applied Optics, 45, 4459-4463. Rosenbush et al, 1997, Astrophys. J. 487, 402-414. Teller et al., 1997. UCRL-JC-128715.

  10. Deep Space Gateway Support of Lunar Surface Ops and Tele-Operational Transfer of Surface Assets to the Next Landing Site

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kring, D. A.

    2018-02-01

    The Deep Space Gateway can support astronauts on the lunar surface, providing them a departure and returning rendezvous point, a communication relay from the lunar farside to Earth, and a transfer point to Orion for return to Earth.

  11. Chemical characteristics of surface systems in the Forsmark area. Visualisation and statistical evaluation of data from surface water, precipitation, shallow groundwater, and regolith

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2006-02-15

    The Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste management Co (SKB) initiated site investigations for a deep repository for spent nuclear fuel at two different sites in Sweden, Forsmark and Oskarshamn, in 2002. This report evaluates the results from chemical investigations of the surface system in the Forsmark area during the period November 2002 - March 2005. The evaluation includes data from surface waters (lakes, streams and the sea), precipitation, shallow groundwater and regolith (till, soil, peat, sediments and biota) in the area. Results from surface waters are not presented in this report since these were treated in a recently published report. The main focus of the study is to visualize the vast amount of data collected hitherto in the site investigations, and to give a chemical characterisation of the investigated media at the site. The results will be used to support the site descriptive models, which in turn are used for safety assessment studies and for the environmental impact assessment. The data used consist of water chemical composition in lakes, streams, coastal sites, and in precipitation, predominantly sampled on a monthly basis, and in groundwater from soil tubes and wells, sampled up to four times per year. Moreover, regolith data includes information on the chemical composition of till, soil, sediment and vegetation samples from the area. The characterisations include all measured chemical parameters, i.e. major and minor constituents, trace elements, nutrients, isotopes and radio nuclides, as well as field measured parameters. The evaluation of data from each medium has been divided into the following parts: Characterisation of individual sampling sites, and comparisons within and among sampling sites as well as comparisons with local, regional and national reference data; Analysis of time trends and seasonal variation (for shallow groundwater); Exploration of relationships among the various chemical parameters. For all investigated parameters, the

  12. Chemical characteristics of surface systems in the Simpevarp area. Visualisation and statistical evaluation of data from surface water, precipitation, shallow groundwater, and regolith

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2006-01-15

    The Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste management Co (SKB) initiated site investigations for a deep repository for spent nuclear fuel at two different sites in Sweden, Forsmark and Oskarshamn, in 2002. This report evaluates the results from chemical investigations of the surface system in the Simpevarp area in Oskarshamn, i.e. both the Laxemar subarea and the Simpevarp subarea, during the period Nov 2002 - Mar 2005. The evaluation includes data from surface waters (lakes, streams and the sea), precipitation, shallow groundwater and regolith (till, soil, peat, sediments and biota) in the area. The main focus of the study is to visualize the vast amount of data collected hitherto in the site investigations, and to give a chemical characterisation of the investigated media at the site. The results will be used to support the site descriptive models, which in turn are used for safety assessment studies and for the environmental impact assessment. The data used consist of water chemical composition in lakes, streams and coastal sites, and in precipitation, predominantly sampled on a monthly basis, and in groundwater from soil tubes and wells. Moreover, regolith data includes information on the chemical composition of till, soil, sediment and vegetation samples from the area. The characterisations include all measured chemical parameters, i.e. major and minor constituents, trace elements, nutrients, isotopes and radio nuclides, as well as field measured parameters. The evaluation of data from each medium has been divided into the following parts: Characterisation of individual sampling sites, and comparisons within and among sampling sites as well as comparisons with local, regional and national reference data. Analysis of time trends and seasonal variation (for surface waters). Exploration of relationships among the various chemical parameters. For all investigated parameters, the report presents selected statistics for each sampling site, as well as for available reference

  13. Chemical characteristics of surface systems in the Simpevarp area. Visualisation and statistical evaluation of data from surface water, precipitation, shallow groundwater, and regolith

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Troejbom, Mats; Soederbaeck, Bjoern

    2006-01-01

    The Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste management Co (SKB) initiated site investigations for a deep repository for spent nuclear fuel at two different sites in Sweden, Forsmark and Oskarshamn, in 2002. This report evaluates the results from chemical investigations of the surface system in the Simpevarp area in Oskarshamn, i.e. both the Laxemar subarea and the Simpevarp subarea, during the period Nov 2002 - Mar 2005. The evaluation includes data from surface waters (lakes, streams and the sea), precipitation, shallow groundwater and regolith (till, soil, peat, sediments and biota) in the area. The main focus of the study is to visualize the vast amount of data collected hitherto in the site investigations, and to give a chemical characterisation of the investigated media at the site. The results will be used to support the site descriptive models, which in turn are used for safety assessment studies and for the environmental impact assessment. The data used consist of water chemical composition in lakes, streams and coastal sites, and in precipitation, predominantly sampled on a monthly basis, and in groundwater from soil tubes and wells. Moreover, regolith data includes information on the chemical composition of till, soil, sediment and vegetation samples from the area. The characterisations include all measured chemical parameters, i.e. major and minor constituents, trace elements, nutrients, isotopes and radio nuclides, as well as field measured parameters. The evaluation of data from each medium has been divided into the following parts: Characterisation of individual sampling sites, and comparisons within and among sampling sites as well as comparisons with local, regional and national reference data. Analysis of time trends and seasonal variation (for surface waters). Exploration of relationships among the various chemical parameters. For all investigated parameters, the report presents selected statistics for each sampling site, as well as for available reference

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.)

  17. 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.

  18. Battery and Fuel Cell Development Goals for the Lunar Surface and Lander

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercer, Carolyn R.

    2008-01-01

    NASA is planning a return to the moon and requires advances in energy storage technology for its planned lunar lander and lunar outpost. This presentation describes NASA s overall mission goals and technical goals for batteries and fuel cells to support the mission. Goals are given for secondary batteries for the lander s ascent stage and suits for extravehicular activity on the lunar surface, and for fuel cells for the lander s descent stage and regenerative fuel cells for outpost power. An overall approach to meeting these goals is also presented.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. Application of automation and robotics to lunar surface human exploration operations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodcock, Gordon R.; Sherwood, Brent; Buddington, Patricia A.; Bares, Leona C.; Folsom, Rolfe; Mah, Robert; Lousma, Jack

    1990-01-01

    Major results of a study applying automation and robotics to lunar surface base buildup and operations concepts are reported. The study developed a reference base scenario with specific goals, equipment concepts, robot concepts, activity schedules and buildup manifests. It examined crew roles, contingency cases and system reliability, and proposed a set of technologies appropriate and necessary for effective lunar operations. This paper refers readers to four companion papers for quantitative details where appropriate.

  3. Yet Another Lunar Surface Geologic Exploration Architecture Concept (What, Again?): A Senior Field Geologist's Integrated View

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eppler, D. B.

    2015-01-01

    Lunar surface geological exploration should be founded on a number of key elements that are seemingly disparate, but which can form an integrated operational concept when properly conceived and deployed. If lunar surface geological exploration is to be useful, this integration of key elements needs to be undertaken throughout the development of both mission hardware, training and operational concepts. These elements include the concept of mission class, crew makeup and training, surface mobility assets that are matched with mission class, and field tools and IT assets that make data collection, sharing and archiving transparent to the surface crew.

  4. 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.

  5. Determination of lunar surface ages from crater frequency–size ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    and the images from Apollo missions have been calibrated from the lunar soil samples from Apollo and Luna landing sites (Head 1976; Neukum et al. 1975). ... Table 1 shows the ages as derived for the craters with errors. Mare Humorum is believed to be made up of six ring structures of 210, 340, 425, 570 and 1195km.

  6. PDS Lunar Data Node Restoration of Apollo In-Situ Surface Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, David R.; Hills, H. Kent; Guinness, Edward A.; Lowman, Paul D.; Taylor, Patrick T.

    2010-01-01

    The Apollo missions between 1969 and 1972 deployed scientific instruments on the Moon's surface which made in-situ measurements of the lunar environment. Apollo II had the short-term Early Apollo Surface Experiments Package (EASEP) and Apollos 12, 14, 15, 16, and 17 each set up an Apollo Lunar Surface Experiments Package (ALSEP). Each ALSEP package contained a different suite of instruments which took measurements and radioed the results back to Earth over periods from 5 to 7 years until they were turned off on 30 September 1977. To this day the ALSEP data remain the only long-term in-situ information on the Moon's surface environment. The Lunar Data Node (LDN) has been formed under the auspices of the Planetary Data System (PDS) Geosciences Node to put relevant, scientifically important Apollo data into accessible digital form for use by researchers and mission planners. We will report on progress made since last year and plans for future data restorations.

  7. Effect of Space Radiation Processing on Lunar Soil Surface Chemistry: X-Ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dukes, C.; Loeffler, M.J.; Baragiola, R.; Christoffersen, R.; Keller, J.

    2009-01-01

    Current understanding of the chemistry and microstructure of the surfaces of lunar soil grains is dominated by a reference frame derived mainly from electron microscopy observations [e.g. 1,2]. These studies have shown that the outermost 10-100 nm of grain surfaces in mature lunar soil finest fractions have been modified by the combined effects of solar wind exposure, surface deposition of vapors and accretion of impact melt products [1,2]. These processes produce surface-correlated nanophase Feo, host grain amorphization, formation of surface patinas and other complex changes [1,2]. What is less well understood is how these changes are reflected directly at the surface, defined as the outermost 1-5 atomic monolayers, a region not easily chemically characterized by TEM. We are currently employing X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS) to study the surface chemistry of lunar soil samples that have been previously studied by TEM. This work includes modification of the grain surfaces by in situ irradiation with ions at solar wind energies to better understand how irradiated surfaces in lunar grains change their chemistry once exposed to ambient conditions on earth.

  8. Plume Impingement to the Lunar Surface: A Challenging Problem for DSMC

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lumpkin, Forrest; Marichalar, Jermiah; Piplica, Anthony

    2007-01-01

    The President's Vision for Space Exploration calls for the return of human exploration of the Moon. The plans are ambitious and call for the creation of a lunar outpost. Lunar Landers will therefore be required to land near predeployed hardware, and the dust storm created by the Lunar Lander's plume impingement to the lunar surface presents a hazard. Knowledge of the number density, size distribution, and velocity of the grains in the dust cloud entrained into the flow is needing to develop mitigation strategies. An initial step to acquire such knowledge is simulating the associated plume impingement flow field. The following paper presents results from a loosely coupled continuum flow solver/Direct Simulation Monte Carlo (DSMC) technique for simulating the plume impingement of the Apollo Lunar module on the lunar surface. These cases were chosen for initial study to allow for comparison with available Apollo video. The relatively high engine thrust and the desire to simulate interesting cases near touchdown result in flow that is nearly entirely continuum. The DSMC region of the flow field was simulated using NASA's DSMC Analysis Code (DAC) and must begin upstream of the impingement shock for the loosely coupled technique to succeed. It was therefore impossible to achieve mean free path resolution with a reasonable number of molecules (say 100 million) as is shown. In order to mitigate accuracy and performance issues when using such large cells, advanced techniques such as collision limiting and nearest neighbor collisions were employed. The final paper will assess the benefits and shortcomings of such techniques. In addition, the effects of plume orientation, plume altitude, and lunar topography, such as craters, on the flow field, the surface pressure distribution, and the surface shear stress distribution are presented.

  9. Lunar Surface Electric Potential Changes Associated with Traversals through the Earth's Foreshock

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collier, Michael R.; Hills, H. Kent; Stubbs, Timothy J.; Halekas, Jasper S.; Delory, Gregory T.; Espley, Jared; Farrell, William M.; Freeman, John W.; Vondrak, Richard

    2011-01-01

    We report an analysis of one year of Suprathermal Ion Detector Experiment (SIDE) Total Ion Detector (TID) resonance events observed between January 1972 and January 1973. The study includes only those events during which upstream solar wind conditions were readily available. The analysis shows that these events are associated with lunar traversals through the dawn flank of the terrestrial magnetospheric bow shock. We propose that the events result from an increase in lunar surface electric potential effected by secondary electron emission due to primary electrons in the Earth's foreshock region (although primary ions may play a role as well). This work establishes (1) the lunar surface potential changes as the Moon moves through the terrestrial bow shock, (2) the lunar surface achieves potentials in the upstream foreshock region that differ from those in the downstream magnetosheath region, (3) these differences can be explained by the presence of energetic electron beams in the upstream foreshock region and (4) if this explanation is correct, the location of the Moon with respect to the terrestrial bow shock influences lunar surface potential.

  10. Lunar surface remanent magnetic fields detected by the electron reflection method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, R. P.; Anderson, K. A.; Bush, R.; Mcguire, R. E.; Mccoy, J. E.

    1976-01-01

    We present maps of the lunar surface remanent magnetic fields detected by the electron reflection method. These maps provide substantial coverage of the latitude band from 30 N southward to 30 S with a resolution of about 40 km and a sensitivity of about 0.2 gamma at the lunar surface. Regions of remanent magnetization are observed ranging in size from the resolution limit of 1.25 deg to above approximately 60 deg. The largest contiguous region fills the Big Backside Basin where it is intersected by the spacecraft orbital tracks. Preliminary analyses of the maps show that the source regions of lunar limb compressions correspond to regions of strong surface magnetism, and that there does not appear to be sharply discontinuous magnetization at the edges of maria. We also analyze the electron reflection observations to obtain information on the direction and distribution of magnetization in the Van de Graaff anomaly region.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. Lunar and planetary surface conditions advances in space science and technology

    CERN Document Server

    Weil, Nicholas A

    1965-01-01

    Lunar and Planetary Surface Conditions considers the inferential knowledge concerning the surfaces of the Moon and the planetary companions in the Solar System. The information presented in this four-chapter book is based on remote observations and measurements from the vantage point of Earth and on the results obtained from accelerated space program of the United States and U.S.S.R. Chapter 1 presents the prevalent hypotheses on the origin and age of the Solar System, followed by a brief description of the methods and feasibility of information acquisition concerning lunar and planetary data,

  14. 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.

  15. LUNAR SURFACE AND DUST GRAIN POTENTIALS DURING THE EARTH’S MAGNETOSPHERE CROSSING

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vaverka, J.; Richterová, I.; Pavlu, J.; Šafránková, J.; Němeček, Z., E-mail: jana.safrankova@mff.cuni.cz [Department of Surface and Plasma Science, Faculty of Mathematics and Physics, Charles University in Prague, V Holešovičkách 2, 180 00 Prague (Czech Republic)

    2016-07-10

    Interaction between the lunar surface and the solar UV radiation and surrounding plasma environment leads to its charging by different processes like photoemission, collection of charged particles, or secondary electron emission (SEE). Whereas the photoemission depends only on the angle between the surface and direction to the Sun and varies only slowly, plasma parameters can change rapidly as the Moon orbits around the Earth. This paper presents numerical simulations of one Moon pass through the magnetospheric tail including the real plasma parameters measured by THEMIS as an input. The calculations are concentrated on different charges of the lunar surface itself and a dust grain lifted above this surface. Our estimations show that (1) the SEE leads to a positive charging of parts of the lunar surface even in the magnetosphere, where a high negative potential is expected; (2) the SEE is generally more important for isolated dust grains than for the lunar surface covered by these grains; and (3) the time constant of charging of dust grains depends on their diameter being of the order of hours for sub-micrometer grains. In view of these results, we discuss the conditions under which and the areas where a levitation of the lifted dust grains could be observed.

  16. 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.

  17. Delay/Disruption Tolerant Networks (DTN): Testing and Demonstration for Lunar Surface Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the testing of the Delay/Disruption Tolerant Network (DTN) designed for use with Lunar Surface applications. This is being done through the DTN experimental Network (DEN), that permit access and testing by other NASA centers, DTN team members and protocol developers. The objective of this work is to demonstrate DTN for high return applications in lunar scenarios, provide DEN connectivity with analogs of Constellation elements, emulators, and other resources from DTN Team Members, serve as a wireless communications staging ground for remote analog excursions and enable testing of detailed communication scenarios and evaluation of network performance. Three scenarios for DTN on the Lunar surface are reviewed: Motion imagery, Voice and sensor telemetry, and Navigation telemetry.

  18. AN INTEGRATED PHOTOGRAMMETRIC AND PHOTOCLINOMETRIC APPROACH FOR PIXEL-RESOLUTION 3D MODELLING OF LUNAR SURFACE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. C. Liu

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available High-resolution 3D modelling of lunar surface is important for lunar scientific research and exploration missions. Photogrammetry is known for 3D mapping and modelling from a pair of stereo images based on dense image matching. However dense matching may fail in poorly textured areas and in situations when the image pair has large illumination differences. As a result, the actual achievable spatial resolution of the 3D model from photogrammetry is limited by the performance of dense image matching. On the other hand, photoclinometry (i.e., shape from shading is characterised by its ability to recover pixel-wise surface shapes based on image intensity and imaging conditions such as illumination and viewing directions. More robust shape reconstruction through photoclinometry can be achieved by incorporating images acquired under different illumination conditions (i.e., photometric stereo. Introducing photoclinometry into photogrammetric processing can therefore effectively increase the achievable resolution of the mapping result while maintaining its overall accuracy. This research presents an integrated photogrammetric and photoclinometric approach for pixel-resolution 3D modelling of the lunar surface. First, photoclinometry is interacted with stereo image matching to create robust and spatially well distributed dense conjugate points. Then, based on the 3D point cloud derived from photogrammetric processing of the dense conjugate points, photoclinometry is further introduced to derive the 3D positions of the unmatched points and to refine the final point cloud. The approach is able to produce one 3D point for each image pixel within the overlapping area of the stereo pair so that to obtain pixel-resolution 3D models. Experiments using the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera - Narrow Angle Camera (LROC NAC images show the superior performances of the approach compared with traditional photogrammetric technique. The results and findings from this

  19. The surface of the moon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Langevin, Yves

    1982-01-01

    Knowledge of the history of the interplanetary environment is linked to that of the formation and evolution of the lunar regolith. The major importance of the various space flights was the collection of almost 400 kg of lunar soil and rock samples, the study of which, thanks to isotopic dating methods, enabled the main lines of the history of the moon to be retraced. Since the ending of magma activity (three thousand million years ago), only the impacts of meteorites have modified the appearance of the lunar surface; the data acquired on their flow provide the explanation of the essential characteristics of the lunar regolith. The processing of the core particles and the samples has contributed to the determination of the history of the flow of particles and matter in the interplanetary environment [fr

  20. SiGe Based Low Temperature Electronics for Lunar Surface Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mojarradi, Mohammad M.; Kolawa, Elizabeth; Blalock, Benjamin; Cressler, John

    2012-01-01

    The temperature at the permanently shadowed regions of the moon's surface is approximately -240 C. Other areas of the lunar surface experience temperatures that vary between 120 C and -180 C during the day and night respectively. To protect against the large temperature variations of the moon surface, traditional electronics used in lunar robotics systems are placed inside a thermally controlled housing which is bulky, consumes power and adds complexity to the integration and test. SiGe Based electronics have the capability to operate over wide temperature range like that of the lunar surface. Deploying low temperature SiGe electronics in a lander platform can minimize the need for the central thermal protection system and enable the development of a new generation of landers and mobility platforms with highly efficient distributed architecture. For the past five years a team consisting of NASA, university and industry researchers has been examining the low temperature and wide temperature characteristic of SiGe based transistors for developing electronics for wide temperature needs of NASA environments such as the Moon, Titan, Mars and Europa. This presentation reports on the status of the development of wide temperature SiGe based electronics for the landers and lunar surface mobility systems.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. The Design of Two Nano-Rovers for Lunar Surface Exploration in the Context of the Google Lunar X Prize

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gill, E.; Honfi Camilo, L.; Kuystermans, P.; Maas, A. S. B. B.; Buutfeld, B. A. M.; van der Pols, R. H.

    2008-09-01

    This paper summarizes a study performed by ten students at the Delft University of Technology on a lunar exploration vehicle suited for competing in the Google Lunar X Prize1. The design philosophy aimed at a quick and simple design process, to comply with the mission constraints. This is achieved by using conventional technology and performing the mission with two identical rovers, increasing reliability and simplicity of systems. Both rovers are however capable of operating independently. The required subsystems have been designed for survival and operation on the lunar surface for an estimated mission lifetime of five days. This preliminary study shows that it is possible for two nano-rovers to perform the basic exploration tasks. The mission has been devised such that after launch the rovers endure a 160 hour voyage to the Moon after which they will land on Sinus Medii with a dedicated lunar transfer/lander vehicle. The mission outline itself has the two nano-rovers travelling in the same direction, moving simultaneously. This mission characteristic allows a quick take-over of the required tasks by the second rover in case of one rover breakdown. The main structure of the rovers will consist of Aluminium 2219 T851, due to its good thermal properties and high hardness. Because of the small dimensions of the rovers, the vehicles will use rigid caterpillar tracks as locomotion system. The track systems are sealed from lunar dust using closed track to prevent interference with the mechanisms. This also prevents any damage to the electronics inside the tracks. For the movement speed a velocity of 0.055 m/s has been determined. This is about 90% of the maximum rover velocity, allowing direct control from Earth. The rovers are operated by a direct control loop, involving the mission control center. In order to direct the rovers safely, a continuous video link with the Earth is necessary to assess its immediate surroundings. Two forward pointing navigational cameras

  4. 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....

  5. 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,...

  6. 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,...

  7. Reference reactor module for NASA's lunar surface fission power system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Poston, David I [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Kapernick, Richard J [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Dixon, David D [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Werner, James [INL; Qualls, Louis [ORNL; Radel, Ross [SNL

    2009-01-01

    Surface fission power systems on the Moon and Mars may provide the first US application of fission reactor technology in space since 1965. The Affordable Fission Surface Power System (AFSPS) study was completed by NASA/DOE to determine the cost of a modest performance, low-technical risk surface power system. The AFSPS concept is now being further developed within the Fission Surface Power (FSP) Project, which is a near-term technology program to demonstrate system-level TRL-6 by 2013. This paper describes the reference FSP reactor module concept, which is designed to provide a net power of 40 kWe for 8 years on the lunar surface; note, the system has been designed with technologies that are fully compatible with a Martian surface application. The reactor concept uses stainless-steel based. UO{sub 2}-fueled, pumped-NaK fission reactor coupled to free-piston Stirling converters. The reactor shielding approach utilizes both in-situ and launched shielding to keep the dose to astronauts much lower than the natural background radiation on the lunar surface. The ultimate goal of this work is to provide a 'workhorse' power system that NASA can utilize in near-term and future Lunar and Martian mission architectures, with the eventual capability to evolve to very high power, low mass systems, for either surface, deep space, and/or orbital missions.

  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. Distillation and Air Stripping Designs for the Lunar Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boul, Peter J.; Lange, Kevin E.; Conger, Bruce; Anderson, Molly

    2009-01-01

    Air stripping and distillation are two different gravity-based methods, which may be applied to the purification of wastewater on the lunar base. These gravity-based solutions to water processing are robust physical separation techniques, which may be advantageous to many other techniques for their simplicity in design and operation. The two techniques can be used in conjunction with each other to obtain high purity water. The components and feed compositions for modeling waste water streams are presented in conjunction with the Aspen property system for traditional stage distillation models and air stripping models. While the individual components for each of the waste streams will vary naturally within certain bounds, an analog model for waste water processing is suggested based on typical concentration ranges for these components. Target purity levels for the for recycled water are determined for each individual component based on NASA s required maximum contaminant levels for potable water Distillation processes are modeled separately and in tandem with air stripping to demonstrate the potential effectiveness and utility of these methods in recycling wastewater on the Moon. Optimum parameters such as reflux ratio, feed stage location, and processing rates are determined with respect to the power consumption of the process. Multistage distillation is evaluated for components in wastewater to determine the minimum number of stages necessary for each of 65 components in humidity condensate and urine wastewater mixed streams. Components of the wastewater streams are ranked by Henry s Law Constant and the suitability of air stripping in the purification of wastewater in terms of component removal is evaluated. Scaling factors for distillation and air stripping columns are presented to account for the difference in the lunar gravitation environment. Commercially available distillation and air stripping units which are considered suitable for Exploration Life Support

  10. Widespread distribution of OH/H2O on the lunar surface inferred from spectral data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bandfield, Joshua L; Poston, Michael J; Klima, Rachel L; Edwards, Christopher S

    2018-01-01

    Remote sensing data from lunar orbiters have revealed spectral features consistent with the presence of OH or H 2 O on the lunar surface. Analyses of data from the Moon Mineralogy Mapper spectrometer onboard the Chandryaan-1 spacecraft have suggested that OH/H 2 O is recycled on diurnal timescales and persists only at high latitudes. However, the spatial distribution and temporal variability of the OH/H 2 O, as well as its source, remain uncertain. Here we incorporate a physics-based thermal correction into analysis of reflectance spectra from the Moon Mineralogy Mapper and find that prominent absorption features consistent with OH/H 2 O can be present at all latitudes, local times, and surface types examined. This suggests the widespread presence of OH/H 2 O on the lunar surface without significant diurnal migration. We suggest that the spectra are consistent with the production of OH in space weathered materials by the solar wind implantation of H + and formation of OH at crystal defect sites, as opposed to H 2 O sourced from the lunar interior. Regardless of the specific composition or formation mechanism, we conclude that OH/H 2 O can be present on the Moon under thermal conditions more wide-ranging than previously recognized.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. Evidence for Surface Water Ice in the Lunar Polar Regions Using Reflectance Measurements from the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter and Temperature Measurements from the Diviner Lunar Radiometer Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, Elizabeth A.; Lucey, Paul G.; Lemelin, Myriam; Greenhagen, Benjamin T.; Siegler, Matthew A.; Mazarico, Erwan; Aharonson, Oded; Williams, Jean-Pierre; Hayne, Paul O.; Neumann, Gregory A.; hide

    2017-01-01

    We find that the reflectance of the lunar surface within 5 deg of latitude of theSouth Pole increases rapidly with decreasing temperature, near approximately 110K, behavior consistent with the presence of surface water ice. The North polar region does not show this behavior, nor do South polar surfaces at latitudes more than 5 deg from the pole. This South pole reflectance anomaly persists when analysis is limited to surfaces with slopes less than 10 deg to eliminate false detection due to the brightening effect of mass wasting, and also when the very bright south polar crater Shackleton is excluded from the analysis. We also find that south polar regions of permanent shadow that have been reported to be generally brighter at 1064 nm do not show anomalous reflectance when their annual maximum surface temperatures are too high to preserve water ice. This distinction is not observed at the North Pole. The reflectance excursion on surfaces with maximum temperatures below 110K is superimposed on a general trend of increasing reflectance with decreasing maximum temperature that is present throughout the polar regions in the north and south; we attribute this trend to a temperature or illumination-dependent space weathering effect (e.g. Hemingway et al. 2015). We also find a sudden increase in reflectance with decreasing temperature superimposed on the general trend at 200K and possibly at 300K. This may indicate the presence of other volatiles such as sulfur or organics. We identified and mapped surfaces with reflectances so high as to be unlikely to be part of an ice-free population. In this south we find a similar distribution found by Hayne et al. 2015 based on UV properties. In the north a cluster of pixels near that pole may represent a limited frost exposure.

  14. Evidence for surface water ice in the lunar polar regions using reflectance measurements from the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter and temperature measurements from the Diviner Lunar Radiometer Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, Elizabeth A.; Lucey, Paul G.; Lemelin, Myriam; Greenhagen, Benjamin T.; Siegler, Matthew A.; Mazarico, Erwan; Aharonson, Oded; Williams, Jean-Pierre; Hayne, Paul O.; Neumann, Gregory A.; Paige, David A.; Smith, David E.; Zuber, Maria T.

    2017-08-01

    We find that the reflectance of the lunar surface within 5° of latitude of the South Pole increases rapidly with decreasing temperature, near ∼110 K, behavior consistent with the presence of surface water ice. The North polar region does not show this behavior, nor do South polar surfaces at latitudes more than 5° from the pole. This South pole reflectance anomaly persists when analysis is limited to surfaces with slopes less than 10° to eliminate false detection due to the brightening effect of mass wasting, and also when the very bright south polar crater Shackleton is excluded from the analysis. We also find that south polar regions of permanent shadow that have been reported to be generally brighter at 1064 nm do not show anomalous reflectance when their annual maximum surface temperatures are too high to preserve water ice. This distinction is not observed at the North Pole. The reflectance excursion on surfaces with maximum temperatures below 110 K is superimposed on a general trend of increasing reflectance with decreasing maximum temperature that is present throughout the polar regions in the north and south; we attribute this trend to a temperature or illumination-dependent space weathering effect (e.g. Hemingway et al., 2015). We also find a sudden increase in reflectance with decreasing temperature superimposed on the general trend at 200 K and possibly at 300 K. This may indicate the presence of other volatiles such as sulfur or organics. We identified and mapped surfaces with reflectances so high as to be unlikely to be part of an ice-free population. In this south we find a similar distribution found by Hayne et al. (2015) based on UV properties. In the north a cluster of pixels near that pole may represent a limited frost exposure.

  15. 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...

  16. 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

  17. Chemical characteristics of surface systems in the Forsmark area. Visualisation and statistical evaluation of data from shallow groundwater, precipitation, and regolith

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Troejbom, Mats; Soederbaeck, Bjoern

    2006-02-01

    The Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste management Co (SKB) initiated site investigations for a deep repository for spent nuclear fuel at two different sites in Sweden, Forsmark and Oskarshamn, in 2002. This report evaluates the results from chemical investigations of the surface system in the Forsmark area during the period November 2002 - March 2005. The evaluation includes data from surface waters (lakes, streams and the sea), precipitation, shallow groundwater and regolith (till, soil, peat, sediments and biota) in the area. Results from surface waters are not presented in this report since these were treated in a recently published report. The main focus of the study is to visualize the vast amount of data collected hitherto in the site investigations, and to give a chemical characterisation of the investigated media at the site. The results will be used to support the site descriptive models, which in turn are used for safety assessment studies and for the environmental impact assessment. The data used consist of water chemical composition in lakes, streams, coastal sites, and in precipitation, predominantly sampled on a monthly basis, and in groundwater from soil tubes and wells, sampled up to four times per year. Moreover, regolith data includes information on the chemical composition of till, soil, sediment and vegetation samples from the area. The characterisations include all measured chemical parameters, i.e. major and minor constituents, trace elements, nutrients, isotopes and radio nuclides, as well as field measured parameters. The evaluation of data from each medium has been divided into the following parts: Characterisation of individual sampling sites, and comparisons within and among sampling sites as well as comparisons with local, regional and national reference data; Analysis of time trends and seasonal variation (for shallow groundwater); Exploration of relationships among the various chemical parameters. For all investigated parameters, the

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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...

  1. 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.

  2. Stair-Step Particle Flux Spectra on the Lunar Surface: Evidence for Nonmonotonic Potentials?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collier, Michael R.; Newheart, Anastasia; Poppe, Andrew R.; Hills, H. Kent; Farrell, William M.

    2016-01-01

    We present examples of unusual "stair-step" differential flux spectra observed by the Apollo 14 Suprathermal Ion Detector Experiment on the lunar dayside surface in Earth's magnetotail. These spectra exhibit a relatively constant differential flux below some cutoff energy and then drop off precipitously, by about an order of magnitude or more, at higher energies. We propose that these spectra result from photoions accelerated on the lunar dayside by nonmonotonic potentials (i.e.,potentials that do not decay to zero monotonically) and present a model for the expected differential flux. The energy of the cutoff and the magnitude of the differential flux are related to the properties of the local space environment and are consistent with the observed flux spectra. If this interpretation is correct, these surface-based ion observations provide a unique perspective that both complements and enhances the conclusions obtained by remote-sensing orbiter observations on the Moon's exospheric and electrostatic properties.

  3. 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.

  4. Feasibility Analysis of Liquefying Oxygen Generated from Water Electrolysis Units on Lunar Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeng, Frank F.

    2009-01-01

    Concepts for liquefying oxygen (O2) generated from water electrolysis subsystems on the Lunar surface were explored. Concepts for O2 liquefaction units capable of generating 1.38 lb/hr (0.63 kg/hr) liquid oxygen (LOX) were developed. Heat and mass balance calculations for the liquefaction concepts were conducted. Stream properties, duties of radiators, heat exchangers and compressors for the selected concepts were calculated and compared.

  5. Impact of Water Recovery from Wastes on the Lunar Surface Mission Water Balance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, John W.; Hogan, John Andrew; Wignarajah, Kanapathipi; Pace, Gregory S.

    2010-01-01

    Future extended lunar surface missions will require extensive recovery of resources to reduce mission costs and enable self-sufficiency. Water is of particular importance due to its potential use for human consumption and hygiene, general cleaning, clothes washing, radiation shielding, cooling for extravehicular activity suits, and oxygen and hydrogen production. Various water sources are inherently present or are generated in lunar surface missions, and subject to recovery. They include: initial water stores, water contained in food, human and other solid wastes, wastewaters and associated brines, ISRU water, and scavenging from residual propellant in landers. This paper presents the results of an analysis of the contribution of water recovery from life support wastes on the overall water balance for lunar surface missions. Water in human wastes, metabolic activity and survival needs are well characterized and dependable figures are available. A detailed life support waste model was developed that summarizes the composition of life support wastes and their water content. Waste processing technologies were reviewed for their potential to recover that water. The recoverable water in waste is a significant contribution to the overall water balance. The value of this contribution is discussed in the context of the other major sources and loses of water. Combined with other analyses these results provide guidance for research and technology development and down-selection.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Dependence of Lunar Surface Charging on Solar Wind Plasma Conditions and Solar Irradiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stubbs, T. J.; Farrell, W. M.; Halekas, J. S.; Burchill, J. K.; Collier, M. R.; Zimmerman, M. I.; Vondrak, R. R.; Delory, G. T.; Pfaff, R. F.

    2014-01-01

    The surface of the Moon is electrically charged by exposure to solar radiation on its dayside, as well as by the continuous flux of charged particles from the various plasma environments that surround it. An electric potential develops between the lunar surface and ambient plasma, which manifests itself in a near-surface plasma sheath with a scale height of order the Debye length. This study investigates surface charging on the lunar dayside and near-terminator regions in the solar wind, for which the dominant current sources are usually from the pohotoemission of electrons, J(sub p), and the collection of plasma electrons J(sub e) and ions J(sub i). These currents are dependent on the following six parameters: plasma concentration n(sub 0), electron temperature T(sub e), ion temperature T(sub i), bulk flow velocity V, photoemission current at normal incidence J(sub P0), and photo electron temperature T(sub p). Using a numerical model, derived from a set of eleven basic assumptions, the influence of these six parameters on surface charging - characterized by the equilibrium surface potential, Debye length, and surface electric field - is investigated as a function of solar zenith angle. Overall, T(sub e) is the most important parameter, especially near the terminator, while J(sub P0) and T(sub p) dominate over most of the dayside.

  11. Radar studies of the planets. [radar measurements of lunar surface, Mars, Mercury, and Venus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ingalls, R. P.; Pettengill, G. H.; Rogers, A. E. E.; Sebring, P. B. (Editor); Shapiro, I. I.

    1974-01-01

    The radar measurements phase of the lunar studies involving reflectivity and topographic mapping of the visible lunar surface was ended in December 1972, but studies of the data and production of maps have continued. This work was supported by Manned Spacecraft Center, Houston. Topographic mapping of the equatorial regions of Mars has been carried out during the period of each opposition since that of 1967. The method comprised extended precise traveling time measurements to a small area centered on the subradar point. As measurements continued, planetary motions caused this point to sweep out extensive areas in both latitude and longitude permitting the development of a fairly extensive topographical map in the equatorial region. Radar observations of Mercury and Venus have also been made over the past few years. Refinements of planetary motions, reflectivity maps and determinations of rotation rates have resulted.

  12. Path Loss Prediction Over the Lunar Surface Utilizing a Modified Longley-Rice Irregular Terrain Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foore, Larry; Ida, Nathan

    2007-01-01

    This study introduces the use of a modified Longley-Rice irregular terrain model and digital elevation data representative of an analogue lunar site for the prediction of RF path loss over the lunar surface. The results are validated by theoretical models and past Apollo studies. The model is used to approximate the path loss deviation from theoretical attenuation over a reflecting sphere. Analysis of the simulation results provides statistics on the fade depths for frequencies of interest, and correspondingly a method for determining the maximum range of communications for various coverage confidence intervals. Communication system engineers and mission planners are provided a link margin and path loss policy for communication frequencies of interest.

  13. Design and characterization of a low cost CubeSat multi-band optical receiver to map water ice on the lunar surface for the Lunar Flashlight mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vinckier, Quentin; Crabtree, Karlton; Paine, Christopher G.; Hayne, Paul O.; Sellar, Glenn R.

    2017-08-01

    Lunar Flashlight is an innovative NASA CubeSat mission dedicated to mapping water ice in the permanently shadowed regions of the Moon, which may act as cold traps for volatiles. To this end, a multi-band reflectometer will be sent to orbit the Moon. This instrument consists of an optical receiver aligned with four lasers, each of which emits sequentially at a different wavelength in the near-infrared between 1 μm and 2 μm. The receiver measures the laser light reflected from the lunar surface; continuum/absorption band ratios are then analyzed to quantify water ice in the illuminated spot. Here, we present the current state of the optical receiver design. To optimize the optical signal-to-noise ratio, we have designed the receiver so as to maximize the laser signal collected, while minimizing the stray light reaching the detector from solarilluminated areas of the lunar surface outside the field-of-view, taking into account the complex lunar topography. Characterization plans are also discussed. This highly mass- and volume-constrained mission will demonstrate several firsts, including being one of the first CubeSats performing science measurements beyond low Earth orbit.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. Kaguya observations of the lunar wake in the terrestrial foreshock: Surface potential change by bow-shock reflected ions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishino, Masaki N.; Harada, Yuki; Saito, Yoshifumi; Tsunakawa, Hideo; Takahashi, Futoshi; Yokota, Shoichiro; Matsushima, Masaki; Shibuya, Hidetoshi; Shimizu, Hisayoshi

    2017-09-01

    There forms a tenuous region called the wake behind the Moon in the solar wind, and plasma entry/refilling into the wake is a fundamental problem of the lunar plasma science. High-energy ions and electrons in the foreshock of the Earth's magnetosphere were detected at the lunar surface in the Apollo era, but their effects on the lunar night-side environment have never been studied. Here we show the first observation of bow-shock reflected protons by Kaguya (SELENE) spacecraft in orbit around the Moon, confirming that solar wind plasma reflected at the terrestrial bow shock can easily access the deepest lunar wake when the Moon stays in the foreshock (We name this mechanism 'type-3 entry'). In a continuous type-3 event, low-energy electron beams from the lunar night-side surface are not obvious even though the spacecraft location is magnetically connected to the lunar surface. On the other hand, in an intermittent type-3 entry event, the kinetic energy of upward-going field-aligned electron beams decreases from ∼ 80 eV to ∼ 20 eV or electron beams disappear as the bow-shock reflected ions come accompanied by enhanced downward electrons. According to theoretical treatment based on electric current balance at the lunar surface including secondary electron emission by incident electron and ion impact, we deduce that incident ions would be accompanied by a few to several times higher flux of an incident electron flux, which well fits observed downward fluxes. We conclude that impact by the bow-shock reflected ions and electrons raises the electrostatic potential of the lunar night-side surface.

  17. 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

  18. Fully Printed, Flexible, Phased Array Antenna for Lunar Surface Communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Subbaraman, Harish; Hen, Ray T.; Lu, Xuejun; Chen, Maggie Yihong

    2013-01-01

    NASAs future exploration missions focus on the manned exploration of the Moon, Mars, and beyond, which will rely heavily on the development of a reliable communications infrastructure from planetary surface-to-surface, surface-to-orbit, and back to Earth. Flexible antennas are highly desired in many scenarios. Active phased array antennas (active PAAs) with distributed control and processing electronics at the surface of an antenna aperture offer numerous advantages for radar communications. Large-area active PAAs on flexible substrates are of particular interest in NASA s space radars due to their efficient inflatable package that can be rolled up during transportation and deployed in space. Such an inflatable package significantly reduces stowage volume and mass. Because of these performance and packaging advantages, large-area inflatable active PAAs are highly desired in NASA s surface-to-orbit and surface-to-relay communications. To address the issues of flexible electronics, a room-temperature printing process of active phased-array antennas on a flexible Kapton substrate was developed. Field effect transistors (FETs) based on carbon nanotubes (CNTs), with many unique physical properties, were successfully proved feasible for the PAA system. This innovation is a new type of fully inkjet-printable, two-dimensional, high-frequency PAA on a flexible substrate at room temperature. The designed electronic circuit components, such as the FET switches in the phase shifter, metal interconnection lines, microstrip transmission lines, etc., are all printed using a special inkjet printer. Using the developed technology, entire 1x4, 2x2, and 4x4 PAA systems were developed, packaged, and demonstrated at 5.3 GHz. Several key solutions are addressed in this work to solve the fabrication issues. The source/drain contact is developed using droplets of silver ink printed on the source/drain areas prior to applying CNT thin-film. The wet silver ink droplets allow the silver to

  19. 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.)

  20. Multi-rover navigation on the lunar surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dabrowski, Borys; Banaszkiewicz, Marek

    2008-07-01

    The paper presents a method of determination an accurate position of a target (rover, immobile sensor, astronaut) on surface of the Moon or other celestial body devoid of navigation infrastructure (like Global Positioning System), by using a group of self-calibrating rovers, which serves as mobile reference points. The rovers are equipped with low-precision clocks synchronized by external broadcasting signal, to measure the moments of receiving radio signals sent by localized target. Based on the registered times, distances between transmitter and receivers installed on beacons are calculated. Each rover determines and corrects its own absolute position and orientation by using odometry navigation and measurements of relative distances and angles to other mobile reference points. Accuracy of navigation has been improved by the use of a calibration algorithm based on the extended Kalman filter, which uses internal encoder readings as inputs and relative measurements of distances and orientations between beacons as feedback information. The key idea in obtaining reliable values of absolute position and orientation of beacons is to first calibrate one of the rovers, using the remaining ones as reference points and then allow the whole group to move together and calibrate all the rovers in-motion. We consider a number of cases, in which basic modeling parameters such as terrain roughness, formation size and shape as well as availability of distance and angle measurements are varied.

  1. The Age of Lunar South Circumpolar Craters Haworth, Shoemaker, Faustini, and Shackleton: Implications for Regional Geology, Surface Processes, and Volatile Sequestration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tye, A. R.; Fassett, C. I.; Head, J. W.; Mazarico, E.; Basilevsky, A. T.; Neumann, G. A.; Smith, D. E.; Zuber, M. T.

    2015-01-01

    The interiors of the lunar south circumpolar craters Haworth, Shoemaker, Faustini, and Shackleton contain permanently shadowed regions (PSRs) and have been interpreted to contain sequestered volatiles including water ice. Altimetry data from the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) onboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter provide a new means of examining the permanently shadowed interiors of these craters in unprecedented detail. In this study, we used extremely high-resolution gridded LOLA data of Haworth, Shoemaker, Faustini, and Shackleton to determine the size-frequency distributions and the spatial density of craters superposing their rims, inner slopes, and floors. Based on their population of superposed D greater than or equal to 2 km craters, Haworth, Shoemaker, and Faustini have pre-Nectarian formation ages. Shackleton is interpreted as having a Late Imbrian age on the basis of craters with diameter D greater than or equal to 0.5 km superposed on its rim. The local density of craters with sub-km diameters across our study area is strongly dependent on slope; because of its steep interior slopes, the lifetime of craters on the interior of Shackleton is limited. The slope-dependence of the small crater population implies that the population in this size range is controlled primarily by the rate at which craters are destroyed. This is consistent with the hypothesis that crater removal and resurfacing is a result of slopedependent processes such as diffusive mass wasting and seismic shaking, linked to micrometeorite and meteorite bombardment. Epithermal neutron flux data and UV albedo data show that these circumpolar PSRs, particularly Shoemaker, may have approximately 1-2% water ice by mass in their highly porous surface regolith, and that Shoemaker may have approximately 5% or more water ice by mass in the near subsurface. The ancient formation ages of Shoemaker, Faustini and Haworth, and the Late Imbrian (approximately 3.5 Ga) crater retention ages of their

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  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. 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.

  7. 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)

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Assessment of Scheduling and Plan Execution of Apollo 14 Lunar Surface Operations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marquez, Jessica J.

    2010-01-01

    Although over forty years have passed since first landing on the Moon, there is not yet a comprehensive, quantitative assessment of Apollo extravehicular activities (EVAs). Quantitatively evaluating lunar EVAs will provide a better understanding of the challenges involved with surface operations. This first evaluation of a surface EVA centers on comparing the planned and the as-ran timeline, specifically collecting data on discrepancies between durations that were estimated versus executed. Differences were summarized by task categories in order to gain insight as to the type of surface operation activities that were most challenging. One Apollo 14 EVA was assessed utilizing the described methodology. Selected metrics and task categorizations were effective, and limitations to this process were identified.

  13. 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

  14. PHOTOMETRIC STEREO SHAPE-AND-ALBEDO-FROM-SHADING FOR PIXEL-LEVEL RESOLUTION LUNAR SURFACE RECONSTRUCTION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. C. Liu

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Shape and Albedo from Shading (SAfS techniques recover pixel-wise surface details based on the relationship between terrain slopes, illumination and imaging geometry, and the energy response (i.e., image intensity captured by the sensing system. Multiple images with different illumination geometries (i.e., photometric stereo can provide better SAfS surface reconstruction due to the increase in observations. Photometric stereo SAfS is suitable for detailed surface reconstruction of the Moon and other extra-terrestrial bodies due to the availability of photometric stereo and the less complex surface reflecting properties (i.e., albedo of the target bodies as compared to the Earth. Considering only one photometric stereo pair (i.e., two images, pixel-variant albedo is still a major obstacle to satisfactory reconstruction and it needs to be regulated by the SAfS algorithm. The illumination directional difference between the two images also becomes an important factor affecting the reconstruction quality. This paper presents a photometric stereo SAfS algorithm for pixel-level resolution lunar surface reconstruction. The algorithm includes a hierarchical optimization architecture for handling pixel-variant albedo and improving performance. With the use of Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera - Narrow Angle Camera (LROC NAC photometric stereo images, the reconstructed topography (i.e., the DEM is compared with the DEM produced independently by photogrammetric methods. This paper also addresses the effect of illumination directional difference in between one photometric stereo pair on the reconstruction quality of the proposed algorithm by both mathematical and experimental analysis. In this case, LROC NAC images under multiple illumination directions are utilized by the proposed algorithm for experimental comparison. The mathematical derivation suggests an illumination azimuthal difference of 90 degrees between two images is recommended to achieve

  15. 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...

  16. Observation of the lunar surface by GRS in KAGUYA (SELENE). To solve mystery of moon and manned landing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hasebe, Nobuyuki; Kobayashi, Shingo

    2009-01-01

    The researches, resources and environment of the moon are reported. The main results such as the magma ocean hypothesis by the Apollo program, the lunar map by Clementine probe and the concentration of Th in the moon by Lunar Prospector probe are explained. B.L. Jolliff et al. proposed the moon consisted of three areas such as the Procellarum KREEP Terrane (PKT), South-Pole Aitken Terrane (SPAT) and Feldspathic Highland Terrane (FHT). The radiations on the lunar surface contain the galactic cosmic ray, solar particle event, second particles produced by interaction between the high energy particles and the materials on the lunar surface, and natural radioactivity from U, Th and K. The gamma ray spectrum on the lunar surface observed by Kaguya gamma ray spectrometer (KGRS) showed the very sharp spectrum of O, Mg, Al, Si, Ca, K, Ti, Fe, Th and U. The distribution of Th in PKT, SPAT and FHT was shown. The outline of KGRS, the energy resolutions of many kinds of gamma ray spectrometers, and the gamma ray energies of main elements are illustrated. (S.Y.)

  17. 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

  18. On the Search for the Amino Acids on the Lunar Surface as it Relates to Other Extraterrestrial Bodies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoover, Richard B.; Kolb, Vera M.

    2009-01-01

    The early search for the amino acids on the lunar surface fines indicated such a low amount of the amino acids that it was deemed insignifi cant. While the later studies seemed to depart in some ways from the earlier results, they were not pursued. In this paper we critically ev aluate the results from the Apollo missions from the new perspective with considerations of the sensitivity of the instrumentation availabl e at the time. We discuss the possible relevance of the lunar results to the findings of the amino acids on the surfaces of other extraterrestrial bodies, such as Mars.

  19. X-Ray Diffraction and Fluorescence Instrument for Mineralogical Analysis at the Lunar Surface, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — We propose to develop LUNA, a compact and lightweight X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) / X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF) instrument for mineralogical analysis of regolith, rock...

  20. X-Ray Diffraction and Fluorescence Instrument for Mineralogical Analysis at the Lunar Surface, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — We propose to develop a compact and lightweight X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) / X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF) instrument for analysis of mineralogical composition of regolith,...

  1. Dual-purpose self-deliverable lunar surface PV electrical power system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnold, Jack H.; Harris, David W.; Cross, Eldon R.; Flood, Dennis J.

    1991-01-01

    A safe haven and work supported PV power systems on the lunar surface will likely be required by NASA in support of the manned outpost scheduled for the post-2000 lunar/Mars exploration and colonization initiative. Initial system modeling and computer analysis shows that the concept is workable and contains no major high risk technology issues which cannot be resolved in the circa 2000 to 2025 timeframe. A specific selection of the best suited type of electric thruster has not been done; the initial modeling was done using an ion thruster, but Rocketdyne must also evaluate arc and resisto-jets before a final design can be formulated. As a general observation, it appears that such a system can deliver itself to the Moon using many system elements that must be transported as dead payload mass in more conventional delivery modes. It further appears that a larger power system providing a much higher safe haven power level is feasible if this delivery system is implemented, perhaps even sufficient to permit resource prospecting and/or lab experimentation. The concept permits growth and can be expanded to include cargo transport such as habitat and working modules. In short, the combined payload could be manned soon after landing and checkout. NASA has expended substantial resources in the development of electric propulsion concepts and hardware that can be applied to a lunar transport system such as described herein. In short, the paper may represent a viable mission on which previous investments play an invaluable role. A more comprehensive technical paper which embodies second generation analysis and system size will be prepared for near-term presentation.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. Hybrid Heat Pipes for Lunar and Martian Surface and High Heat Flux Space Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ababneh, Mohammed T.; Tarau, Calin; Anderson, William G.; Farmer, Jeffery T.; Alvarez-Hernandez, Angel R.

    2016-01-01

    Novel hybrid wick heat pipes are developed to operate against gravity on planetary surfaces, operate in space carrying power over long distances and act as thermosyphons on the planetary surface for Lunar and Martian landers and rovers. These hybrid heat pipes will be capable of operating at the higher heat flux requirements expected in NASA's future spacecraft and on the next generation of polar rovers and equatorial landers. In addition, the sintered evaporator wicks mitigate the start-up problems in vertical gravity aided heat pipes because of large number of nucleation sites in wicks which will allow easy boiling initiation. ACT, NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, and NASA Johnson Space Center, are working together on the Advanced Passive Thermal experiment (APTx) to test and validate the operation of a hybrid wick VCHP with warm reservoir and HiK"TM" plates in microgravity environment on the ISS.

  6. Design and Testing of a Prototype Lunar or Planetary Surface Landing Research Vehicle (LPSLRV)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murphy, Gloria A.

    2010-01-01

    This handbook describes a two-semester senior design course sponsored by the NASA Office of Education, the Exploration Systems Mission Directorate (ESMD), and the NASA Space Grant Consortium. The course was developed and implemented by the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department (MAE) at Utah State University. The course final outcome is a packaged senior design course that can be readily incorporated into the instructional curriculum at universities across the country. The course materials adhere to the standards of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET), and is constructed to be relevant to key research areas identified by ESMD. The design project challenged students to apply systems engineering concepts to define research and training requirements for a terrestrial-based lunar landing simulator. This project developed a flying prototype for a Lunar or Planetary Surface Landing Research Vehicle (LPSRV). Per NASA specifications the concept accounts for reduced lunar gravity, and allows the terminal stage of lunar descent to be flown either by remote pilot or autonomously. This free-flying platform was designed to be sufficiently-flexible to allow both sensor evaluation and pilot training. This handbook outlines the course materials, describes the systems engineering processes developed to facilitate design fabrication, integration, and testing. This handbook presents sufficient details of the final design configuration to allow an independent group to reproduce the design. The design evolution and details regarding the verification testing used to characterize the system are presented in a separate project final design report. Details of the experimental apparatus used for system characterization may be found in Appendix F, G, and I of that report. A brief summary of the ground testing and systems verification is also included in Appendix A of this report. Details of the flight tests will be documented in a separate flight test

  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. Analysis of Stationary, Photovoltaic-based Surface Power System Designs at the Lunar South Pole

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freeh, Joshua E.

    2009-01-01

    Combinations of solar arrays and either batteries or regenerative fuel cells are analyzed for a surface power system module at the lunar south pole. The systems are required to produce 5 kW of net electrical power in sunlight and 2 kW of net electrical power during lunar night periods for a 10-year period between 2020 and 2030. Systems-level models for energy conservation, performance, degradation, and mass are used to compare to various systems. The sensitivities of important and/or uncertain variables including battery specific energy, fuel cell operating voltage, and DC-DC converter efficiency are compared to better understand the system. Switching unit efficiency, battery specific energy, and fuel cell operating voltage appear to be important system-level variables for this system. With reasonably sized solar arrays, the regenerative fuel cell system has significantly lower mass than the battery system based on the requirements and assumptions made herein. The total operational time is estimated at about 10,000 hours in battery discharge/fuel cell mode and about 4,000 and 8,000 hours for the battery charge and electrolyzer modes, respectively. The estimated number of significant depth-of-discharge cycles for either energy storage system is less than 100 for the 10-year period.

  10. A comparison of two systems for lunar surface remote and mobile power applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Determan, W.R.; Otting, W.D.; Hunt, M.E.

    1993-01-01

    The free piston Stirling engine (FPSE) is now being developed by Mechanical Technology Incorporated (MTI) and NASA-LeRC for space power applications. Some conceptualizations of an isotope powered FPSE have been proposed. The performance characteristics of the proposed 2.5-kWe Stirling Isotope Power (STIP) system were developed for lunar surface remote and mobile applications. The Stirling system configuration uses a nonredundant power conversion system coupled to an annular heat source assembly (HSA) using an array of sodium heat pipes which transfer energy from the annular general-purpose heat source (GPHS) stack within the HSA to the Stirling heater head. The Stirling engine uses a dual-opposed piston design with heater head coupling. The engine coolers are connected to a single-pumped coolant loop, which rejects the cycle's waste heat to a radiator. Quantitative information, such as mass, area, and efficiency, are reported for the system. The results of a qualitative evaluation of the proposed STIP system against the desirable attributes of a lunar-based isotope power system are presented. Alternate configurations are also presented

  11. 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)

  12. 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

  13. A Study of an Optical Lunar Surface Communications Network with High Bandwidth Direct to Earth Link

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, K.; Biswas, A.; Schoolcraft, J.

    2011-01-01

    Analyzed optical DTE (direct to earth) and lunar relay satellite link analyses, greater than 200 Mbps downlink to 1-m Earth receiver and greater than 1 Mbps uplink achieved with mobile 5-cm lunar transceiver, greater than 1Gbps downlink and greater than 10 Mpbs uplink achieved with 10-cm stationary lunar transceiver, MITLL (MIT Lincoln Laboratory) 2013 LLCD (Lunar Laser Communications Demonstration) plans to demonstrate 622 Mbps downlink with 20 Mbps uplink between lunar orbiter and ground station; Identified top five technology challenges to deploying lunar optical network, Performed preliminary experiments on two of challenges: (i) lunar dust removal and (ii)DTN over optical carrier, Exploring opportunities to evaluate DTN (delay-tolerant networking) over optical link in a multi-node network e.g. Desert RATS.

  14. A program of data synthesis from the ALSEP/CPLEE ALSEP/SIDE, and Explorer 35 magnetometer to investigate lunar terminator and nightside particle fluxes and surface interactions. Final technical report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Reasoner, D.L.

    1976-01-01

    Lunar nightside electron fluxes were studied with the aid of the ALSEP/CPLEE and other instruments. The flux events were shown to be due to (a) electrons propagating upstream from the earth's bow shock, (b) electrons thermalized and scattered to the lunar surface by disturbances along the boundary of the lunar solarwind cavity, and (c) solar wind electrons scattered to the lunar surface by lunar limb shocks and/or compressional disturbances. These electrons were identified as a cause of the high night surface negative potentials observed in tha ALSEP/SIDE ion data. A study was also made of the shadowing of magnetotail plasma sheet electrons by interactions between the lunar body and the ambient magnetic field and by interactions between charged particles and lunar remnant magnetic fields. These shadowing effects were shown to modify lunar surface and near-lunar potential distributions. (Author)

  15. Surface erosion and sedimentation caused by ejecta from the lunar crater Tycho

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shkuratov, Y.; Basilevsky, A.; Kaydash, V.; Ivanov, B.; Korokhin, V.; Videen, G.

    2018-02-01

    We use Kaguya MI images acquired at wavelengths 415, 750, and 950 nm to map TiO2 and FeO content and the parameter of optical maturity OMAT in lunar regions Lubiniezky E and Taurus-Littrow with a spatial resolution of 20 m using the Lucey method [Lucey et al., JGR 2000, 105. 20,297]. We show that some ejecta from large craters, such as Tycho and Copernicus may cause lunar surface erosion, transportation of the eroded material and its sedimentation. The traces of the erosion resemble wind tails observed on Earth, Mars, and Venus, although the Moon has no atmosphere. The highland material of the local topographic prominences could be mobilized by Tycho's granolometrically fine ejecta and caused by its transportation along the ejecta way to adjacent mare areas and subsequent deposition. The tails of mobilized material reveal lower abundances of Ti and Fe than the surrounding mare surface. We have concluded that high-Ti streaks also seen in the Lubiniezky E site, which show unusual combinations of the TiO2 and FeO content on the correlation diagram, could be the result of erosion by Tycho's ejecta too. In these locations, Tycho's material did not form a consolidated deposit, but resulted in erosion of the mare surface material that became intermixed, consequently, diluting the ejecta. The Taurus-Littrow did provide evidence of the mechanical effect of Tycho's ejecta on the local landforms (landslide, secondary craters) and do not show the compositional signature of Tycho's ejecta probably due to intermixing with local materials and dilution.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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)

  20. 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

  1. A Study of Parallels Between Antarctica South Pole Traverse Equipment and Lunar/Mars Surface Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Robert P.; Hoffman, Stephen, J.; Thur, Paul

    2010-01-01

    The parallels between an actual Antarctica South Pole re-supply traverse conducted by the National Science Foundation (NSF) Office of Polar Programs in 2009 have been studied with respect to the latest mission architecture concepts being generated by the United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) for lunar and Mars surface systems scenarios. The challenges faced by both endeavors are similar since they must both deliver equipment and supplies to support operations in an extreme environment with little margin for error in order to be successful. By carefully and closely monitoring the manifesting and operational support equipment lists which will enable this South Pole traverse, functional areas have been identified. The equipment required to support these functions will be listed with relevant properties such as mass, volume, spare parts and maintenance schedules. This equipment will be compared to space systems currently in use and projected to be required to support equivalent and parallel functions in Lunar and Mars missions in order to provide a level of realistic benchmarking. Space operations have historically required significant amounts of support equipment and tools to operate and maintain the space systems that are the primary focus of the mission. By gaining insight and expertise in Antarctic South Pole traverses, space missions can use the experience gained over the last half century of Antarctic operations in order to design for operations, maintenance, dual use, robustness and safety which will result in a more cost effective, user friendly, and lower risk surface system on the Moon and Mars. It is anticipated that the U.S Antarctic Program (USAP) will also realize benefits for this interaction with NASA in at least two areas: an understanding of how NASA plans and carries out its missions and possible improved efficiency through factors such as weight savings, alternative technologies, or modifications in training and

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. SECONDARY EMISSION FROM NON-SPHERICAL DUST GRAINS WITH ROUGH SURFACES: APPLICATION TO LUNAR DUST

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Richterová, I.; Němeček, Z.; Beránek, M.; Šafránková, J.; Pavlů, J.

    2012-01-01

    Electrons impinging on a target can release secondary electrons and/or they can be scattered out of the target. It is well established that the number of escaping electrons per primary electron depends on the target composition and dimensions, the energy, and incidence angle of the primary electrons, but there are suggestions that the target's shape and surface roughness also influence the secondary emission. We present a further modification of the model of secondary electron emission from dust grains which is applied to non-spherical grains and grains with defined surface roughness. It is shown that the non-spherical grains give rise to a larger secondary electron yield, whereas the surface roughness leads to a decrease in the yield. Moreover, these effects can be distinguished: the shape effect is prominent for high primary energies, whereas the surface roughness predominantly affects the yield at the low-energy range. The calculations use the Lunar Highlands Type NU-LHT-2M simulant as a grain material and the results are compared with previously published laboratory and in situ measurements.

  6. 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.

  7. High Surface Iridium Anodes for Molten Oxide Electrolysis, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Processing of lunar regolith into oxygen for habitat and propulsion is needed to support future space missions. Direct electrochemical reduction of molten regolith...

  8. Cross-calibration of Medium Resolution Earth Observing Satellites by Using EO-1 Hyperion-derived Spectral Surface Reflectance from "Lunar Cal Sites"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ungar, S.

    2017-12-01

    Over the past 3 years, the Earth Observing-one (EO-1) Hyperion imaging spectrometer was used to slowly scan the lunar surface at a rate which results in up to 32X oversampling to effectively increase the SNR. Several strategies, including comparison against the USGS RObotic Lunar Observatory (ROLO) mode,l are being employed to estimate the absolute and relative accuracy of the measurement set. There is an existing need to resolve discrepancies as high as 10% between ROLO and solar based calibration of current NASA EOS assets. Although the EO-1 mission was decommissioned at the end of March 2017, the development of a well-characterized exoatmospheric spectral radiometric database, for a range of lunar phase angles surrounding the fully illuminated moon, continues. Initial studies include a comprehensive analysis of the existing 17-year collection of more than 200 monthly lunar acquisitions. Specific lunar surface areas, such as a lunar mare, are being characterized as potential "lunar calibration sites" in terms of their radiometric stability in the presence of lunar nutation and libration. Site specific Hyperion-derived lunar spectral reflectance are being compared against spectrographic measurements made during the Apollo program. Techniques developed through this activity can be employed by future high-quality orbiting imaging spectrometers (such as HyspIRI and EnMap) to further refine calibration accuracies. These techniques will enable the consistent cross calibration of existing and future earth observing systems (spectral and multi-spectral) including those that do not have lunar viewing capability. When direct lunar viewing is not an option for an earth observing asset, orbiting imaging spectrometers can serve as transfer radiometers relating that asset's sensor response to lunar values through near contemporaneous observations of well characterized stable CEOS test sites. Analysis of this dataset will lead to the development of strategies to ensure more

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. A Brief Survey of Media Access Control, Data Link Layer, and Protocol Technologies for Lunar Surface Communications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallett, Thomas M.

    2009-01-01

    This paper surveys and describes some of the existing media access control and data link layer technologies for possible application in lunar surface communications and the advanced wideband Direct Sequence Code Division Multiple Access (DSCDMA) conceptual systems utilizing phased-array technology that will evolve in the next decade. Time Domain Multiple Access (TDMA) and Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) are standard Media Access Control (MAC) techniques that can be incorporated into lunar surface communications architectures. Another novel hybrid technique that is recently being developed for use with smart antenna technology combines the advantages of CDMA with those of TDMA. The relatively new and sundry wireless LAN data link layer protocols that are continually under development offer distinct advantages for lunar surface applications over the legacy protocols which are not wireless. Also several communication transport and routing protocols can be chosen with characteristics commensurate with smart antenna systems to provide spacecraft communications for links exhibiting high capacity on the surface of the Moon. The proper choices depend on the specific communication requirements.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. A Comparison of Fission Power System Options for Lunar and Mars Surface Applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mason, Lee S.

    2006-01-01

    This paper presents a comparison of reactor and power conversion design options for 50 kWe class lunar and Mars surface power applications with scaling from 25 to 200 kWe. Design concepts and integration approaches are provided for three reactor-converter combinations: gas-cooled Brayton, liquid-metal Stirling, and liquid-metal thermoelectric. The study examines the mass and performance of low temperature, stainless steel based reactors and higher temperature refractory reactors. The preferred system implementation approach uses crew-assisted assembly and in-situ radiation shielding via installation of the reactor in an excavated hole. As an alternative, self-deployable system concepts that use earth-delivered, on-board radiation shielding are evaluated. The analyses indicate that among the 50 kWe stainless steel reactor options, the liquid-metal Stirling system provides the lowest mass at about 5300 kg followed by the gas-cooled Brayton at 5700 kg and the liquid-metal thermoelectric at 8400 kg. The use of a higher temperature, refractory reactor favors the gas-cooled Brayton option with a system mass of about 4200 kg as compared to the Stirling and thermoelectric options at 4700 kg and 5600 kg, respectively. The self-deployed concepts with on-board shielding result in a factor of two system mass increase as compared to the in-situ shielded concepts

  5. 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

  6. In Situ Lunar Surface Measurements Via Miniature Gas Chromatography, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Lunar Exploration Analysis Group (LEAG) has placed a high priority on determining the nature, distribution and transport of volatiles on the moon. The objective...

  7. Surface Support Systems for Co-Operative and Integrated Human/Robotic Lunar Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Robert P.

    2006-01-01

    Human and robotic partnerships to realize space goals can enhance space missions and provide increases in human productivity while decreasing the hazards that the humans are exposed to. For lunar exploration, the harsh environment of the moon and the repetitive nature of the tasks involved with lunar outpost construction, maintenance and operation as well as production tasks associated with in-situ resource utilization, make it highly desirable to use robotic systems in co-operation with human activity. A human lunar outpost is functionally examined and concepts for selected human/robotic tasks are discussed in the context of a lunar outpost which will enable the presence of humans on the moon for extended periods of time.

  8. 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.

  9. Passive seismic experiment - A summary of current status. [Apollo-initiated lunar surface station data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Latham, G. V.; Dorman, H. J.; Horvath, P.; Ibrahim, A. K.; Koyama, J.; Nakamura, Y.

    1978-01-01

    The data set obtained from the four-station Apollo seismic network including signals from approximately 11,800 events, is surveyed. Some refinement of the lunar model will result, but its gross features remain the same. Attention is given to the question of a small, molten lunar core, the answer to which remains dependent on analysis of signals from a far side impact. Seventy three sources of repeating, deep moonquakes have been identified, thirty nine of which have been accurately located. Concentrated at depths from 800 to 1000 km, the periodicities of these events have led to the hypothesis that they are generated by tidal stresses. Lunar seismic data has also indicated that the meteoroid population is ten times lower than originally determined from earth based observations. Lunar seismic activity is much lower and mountainous masses show no sign of sinking, in contrast to earth, as a result of the lunar crust being four times thicker. While much work remains to be done, significant correlation between terrestrial and lunar observations can be seen.

  10. 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.

  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. Lunar Circular Structure Classification from Chang 'e 2 High Resolution Lunar Images with Convolutional Neural Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, X. G.; Liu, J. J.; Zuo, W.; Chen, W. L.; Liu, Y. X.

    2018-04-01

    Circular structures are widely distributed around the lunar surface. The most typical of them could be lunar impact crater, lunar dome, et.al. In this approach, we are trying to use the Convolutional Neural Network to classify the lunar circular structures from the lunar images.

  13. 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.

  14. 100 kWe lunar/Mars surface power utilizing the SP-100 reactor with dynamic conversion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Harty, R.B.; Mason, L.S.

    1992-01-01

    This paper reports on an integration study which was performed coupling an SP-100 reactor with either a Brayton of Stirling power conversion subsystem. a power level of 100 kWe was selected for the study. The power system was to be compatible with both the lunar and Mars surface environment and require no site preparation. In addition, the reactor was to have integral shielding and be completely self-contained, including its own auxiliary power for start-up. Initial reliability studies were performed to determine power conversion redundancy and engine module size. For the lunar environment, the reactor and primary coolant loop would be contained in a guard vessel to protect from a loss of primary loop containment. For the Mars environment, all refractory components including the reactor, primary coolant, and power conversion components would be contained in a vacuum vessel for protection against the CO 2 environment

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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...

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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...

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Solar Ion Processing of Major Element Surface Compositions of Mature Mare Soils: Insights from Combined XPS and Analytical TEM Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christoffersen, R.; Dukes, C.; Keller, L. P.; Baragiola, R.

    2012-01-01

    Solar wind ions are capable of altering the sur-face chemistry of the lunar regolith by a number of mechanisms including preferential sputtering, radiation-enhanced diffusion and sputter erosion of space weathered surfaces containing pre-existing compositional profiles. We have previously reported in-situ ion irradiation experiments supported by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and analytical TEM that show how solar ions potentially drive Fe and Ti reduction at the monolayer scale as well as the 10-100 nm depth scale in lunar soils [1]. Here we report experimental data on the effect of ion irradiation on the major element surface composition in a mature mare soil.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. A New Moonquake Catalog from Apollo 17 Seismic Data II: Lunar Surface Gravimeter: Implications of Expanding the Passive Seismic Array

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, D.; Dimech, J. L.; Weber, R. C.

    2017-12-01

    Apollo 17's Lunar Surface Gravimeter (LSG) was deployed on the Moon in 1972, and was originally intended to detect gravitational waves as a confirmation of Einstein's general theory of relativity. Due to a design problem, the instrument did not function as intended. However, remotely-issued reconfiguration commands permitted the instrument to act effectively as a passive seismometer. LSG recorded continuously until Sept. 1977, when all surface data recording was terminated. Because the instrument did not meet its primary science objective, little effort was made to archive the data. Most of it was eventually lost, with the exception of data spanning the period March 1976 until Sept. 1977, and a recent investigation demonstrated that LSG data do contain moonquake signals (Kawamura et al., 2015). The addition of useable seismic data at the Apollo 17 site has important implications for event location schemes, which improve with increasing data coverage. All previous seismic event location attempts were limited to the four stations deployed at the Apollo 12, 14, 15, and 16 sites. Apollo 17 extends the functional aperture of the seismic array significantly to the east, permitting more accurate moonquake locations and improved probing of the lunar interior. Using the standard location technique of linearized arrival time inversion through a known velocity model, Kawamura et al. (2015) used moonquake signals detected in the LSG data to refine location estimates for 49 deep moonquake clusters, and constrained new locations for five previously un-located clusters. Recent efforts of the Apollo Lunar Surface Experiments Package Data Recovery Focus Group have recovered some of the previously lost LSG data, spanning the time period April 2, 1975 to June 30, 1975. In this study, we expand Kawamura's analysis to the newly recovered data, which contain over 200 known seismic signals, including deep moonquakes, shallow moonquakes, and meteorite impacts. We have completed initial

  12. 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

    This NIAC project investigated an innovative approach to provide heat shield protection to spacecraft after launch and prior to each EDL thus potentially realizing significant launch mass savings. Heat shields fabricated in situ can provide a thermal-protection system for spacecraft that routinely enter a planetary atmosphere. By fabricating the heat shield with space resources from materials available on moons and asteroids, it is possible to avoid launching the heat-shield mass from Earth. Regolith has extremely good insulating properties and the silicates it contains can be used in the fabrication and molding of thermal-protection materials. Such in situ developed heat shields have been suggested before by Lewis. Prior research efforts have shown that regolith properties can be compatible with very-high temperature resistance. Our project team is highly experienced in regolith processing and thermal protection systems (TPS). Routine access to space and return from any planetary surface requires dealing with heat loads experienced by the spacecraft during reentry. Our team addresses some of the key issues with the EDL of human-scale missions through a highly innovative investigation of heat shields that can be fabricated in space by using local resources on asteroids and moons. Most space missions are one-way trips, dedicated to placing an asset in space for economical or scientific gain. However, for human missions, a very-reliable heat-shield system is necessary to protect the crew from the intense heat experienced at very high entry velocities of approximately 11 km/s at approximately Mach 33 (Apollo). For a human mission to Mars, the return problem is even more difficult, with predicted velocities of up to 14 km/s, at approximately Mach 42 at the Earth-atmosphere entry. In addition to human return, it is very likely that future space-travel architecture will include returning cargo to the Earth, either for scientific purposes or for commercial reasons

  13. The evolution of impact basins - Viscous relaxation of topographic relief. [for lunar surface modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solomon, S. C.; Comer, R. P.; Head, J. W.

    1982-01-01

    A topographic profile of the young large lunar basin, Orientale, is presented in order to examine the effects of viscous relaxation on basin topography. Analytical models for viscous flow are considered, showing a wavelength-dependence of time constants for viscous decay on the decrease in viscosity with depth and on the extent of the isostatic compensation of the initial topography. Lunar rheological models which are developed include a half-space model for uniform Newtonian viscosity, density, and gravitational acceleration, a layer over inviscid half space model with material inviscid over geological time scales, and a layer with isostatic compensation where a uniformly viscous layer overlies an inviscid half space of higher density. Greater roughness is concluded, and has been observed, on the moon's dark side due to continued lower temperatures since the time of heavy bombardment.

  14. 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.)

  15. 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).

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  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. 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...

  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. 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

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. Lunar surface engineering properties experiment definition. Volume 2: Mechanics of rolling sphere-soil slope interaction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hovland, H. J.; Mitchell, J. K.

    1971-01-01

    The soil deformation mode under the action of a rolling sphere (boulder) was determined, and a theory based on actual soil failure mechanism was developed which provides a remote reconnaissance technique for study of soil conditions using boulder track observations. The failure mechanism was investigated by using models and by testing an instrumented spherical wheel. The wheel was specifically designed to measure contact pressure, but it also provided information on the failure mechanism. Further tests included rolling some 200 spheres down sand slopes. Films were taken of the rolling spheres, and the tracks were measured. Implications of the results and reevaluation of the lunar boulder tracks are discussed.

  5. Lunar Surface Scenarios: Habitation and Life Support Systems for a Pressurized Rover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Molly; Hanford, Anthony; Howard, Robert; Toups, Larry

    2006-01-01

    Pressurized rovers will be a critical component of successful lunar exploration to enable safe investigation of sites distant from the outpost location. A pressurized rover is a complex system with the same functions as any other crewed vehicle. Designs for a pressurized rover need to take into account significant constraints, a multitude of tasks to be performed inside and out, and the complexity of life support systems to support the crew. In future studies, pressurized rovers should be given the same level of consideration as any other vehicle occupied by the crew.

  6. 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.

  7. View of the Lunar Module 'Orion' and Lunar Roving Vehicle during first EVA

    Science.gov (United States)

    1972-01-01

    A view of the Lunar Module (LM) 'Orion' and Lunar Roving Vehicle (LRV), as photographed by Astronaut Charles M. Duke Jr., lunar module pilot, during the first Apollo 16 extravehicular activity (EVA-1) at the Descates landing site. Astronaut John W. Young, commander, can be seen directly behind the LRV. The lunar surface feature in the left background is Stone Mountain.

  8. Effects of illumination differences on photometric stereo shape-and-albedo-from-shading for precision lunar surface reconstruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chung Liu, Wai; Wu, Bo; Wöhler, Christian

    2018-02-01

    Photoclinometric surface reconstruction techniques such as Shape-from-Shading (SfS) and Shape-and-Albedo-from-Shading (SAfS) retrieve topographic information of a surface on the basis of the reflectance information embedded in the image intensity of each pixel. SfS or SAfS techniques have been utilized to generate pixel-resolution digital elevation models (DEMs) of the Moon and other planetary bodies. Photometric stereo SAfS analyzes images under multiple illumination conditions to improve the robustness of reconstruction. In this case, the directional difference in illumination between the images is likely to affect the quality of the reconstruction result. In this study, we quantitatively investigate the effects of illumination differences on photometric stereo SAfS. Firstly, an algorithm for photometric stereo SAfS is developed, and then, an error model is derived to analyze the relationships between the azimuthal and zenith angles of illumination of the images and the reconstruction qualities. The developed algorithm and error model were verified with high-resolution images collected by the Narrow Angle Camera (NAC) of the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC). Experimental analyses reveal that (1) the resulting error in photometric stereo SAfS depends on both the azimuthal and the zenith angles of illumination as well as the general intensity of the images and (2) the predictions from the proposed error model are consistent with the actual slope errors obtained by photometric stereo SAfS using the LROC NAC images. The proposed error model enriches the theory of photometric stereo SAfS and is of significance for optimized lunar surface reconstruction based on SAfS techniques.

  9. Surface Roughness of the Moon Derived from Multi-frequency Radar Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fa, W.

    2011-12-01

    Surface roughness of the Moon provides important information concerning both significant questions about lunar surface processes and engineering constrains for human outposts and rover trafficabillity. Impact-related phenomena change the morphology and roughness of lunar surface, and therefore surface roughness provides clues to the formation and modification mechanisms of impact craters. Since the Apollo era, lunar surface roughness has been studied using different approaches, such as direct estimation from lunar surface digital topographic relief, and indirect analysis of Earth-based radar echo strengths. Submillimeter scale roughness at Apollo landing sites has been studied by computer stereophotogrammetry analysis of Apollo Lunar Surface Closeup Camera (ALSCC) pictures, whereas roughness at meter to kilometer scale has been studied using laser altimeter data from recent missions. Though these studies shown lunar surface roughness is scale dependent that can be described by fractal statistics, roughness at centimeter scale has not been studied yet. In this study, lunar surface roughnesses at centimeter scale are investigated using Earth-based 70 cm Arecibo radar data and miniature synthetic aperture radar (Mini-SAR) data at S- and X-band (with wavelengths 12.6 cm and 4.12 cm). Both observations and theoretical modeling show that radar echo strengths are mostly dominated by scattering from the surface and shallow buried rocks. Given the different penetration depths of radar waves at these frequencies (< 30 m for 70 cm wavelength, < 3 m at S-band, and < 1 m at X-band), radar echo strengths at S- and X-band will yield surface roughness directly, whereas radar echo at 70-cm will give an upper limit of lunar surface roughness. The integral equation method is used to model radar scattering from the rough lunar surface, and dielectric constant of regolith and surface roughness are two dominate factors. The complex dielectric constant of regolith is first estimated

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. Lunar near-surface shear wave velocities at the Apollo landing sites as inferred from spectral amplitude ratios

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horvath, P.; Latham, G. V.; Nakamura, Y.; Dorman, H. J.

    1980-01-01

    The horizontal-to-vertical amplitude ratios of the long-period seismograms are reexamined to determine the shear wave velocity distributions at the Apollo 12, 14, 15, and 16 lunar landing sites. Average spectral ratios, computed from a number of impact signals, were compared with spectral ratios calculated for the fundamental mode Rayleigh waves in media consisting of homogeneous, isotropic, horizontal layers. The shear velocities of the best fitting models at the different sites resemble each other and differ from the average for all sites by not more than 20% except for the bottom layer at station 14. The shear velocities increase from 40 m/s at the surface to about 400 m/s at depths between 95 and 160 m at the various sites. Within this depth range the velocity-depth functions are well represented by two piecewise linear segments, although the presence of first-order discontinuities cannot be ruled out.

  16. 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...

  17. 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...

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. Simulating Regolith Excavation, Entrainment, Dispersal and Visibility Impairment due to Rocket Plume-Surface Interaction via a Hybrid Continuum-Rarefied Flow Solver

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — With NASA planning to redirect an asteroid and possible future missions to the Moon or Martian satellites, the effects of thruster plume impingement on the surfaces...

  6. 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

  7. Depth and stratigraphy of regolith. Site descriptive modelling SDM-Site Laxemar

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nyman, Helena; Sohlenius, Gustav; Stroemgren, Maarten; Brydsten, Lars

    2008-06-01

    At the Laxemar-Simpevarp site, numerical and descriptive modelling are performed both for the deep bedrock and for the surface systems. The surface geology and regolith depth are important parameters for e.g. hydrogeological and geochemical modelling and for the over all understanding of the area. Regolith refers to all the unconsolidated deposits overlying the bedrock. The regolith depth model (RDM) presented here visualizes the stratigraphical distribution of the regolith as well as the elevation of the bedrock surface. The model covers 280 km 2 including both terrestrial and marine areas. In the model the stratigraphy is represented by six layers (Z1-Z6) that corresponds to different types of regolith. The model is geometric and the properties of the layers are assigned by the user according to the purpose. The GeoModel program, which is an ArcGIS extension, was used for modelling the regolith depths. A detailed topographical Digital Elevation Model (DEM) and a map of Quaternary deposits were used as input to the model. Altogether 319 boreholes and 440 other stratigraphical observations were also used. Furthermore a large number of depth data interpreted from geophysical investigations were used; refraction seismic measurements from 51 profiles, 11,000 observation points from resistivity measurements and almost 140,000 points from seismic and sediment echo sounding data. The results from the refraction seismic and resistivity measurements give information about the total regolith depths, whereas most other data also give information about the stratigraphy of the regolith. Some of the used observations did not reach the bedrock surface. They do, however, describe the minimum regolith depth at each location and were therefore used where the regolith depth would have been thinner without using the observation point. A large proportion of the modelled area has a low data density and the area was therefore divided into nine domains. These domains were defined based

  8. Depth and stratigraphy of regolith. Site descriptive modelling SDM-Site Laxemar

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nyman, Helena (SWECO Position, Stockholm (Sweden)); Sohlenius, Gustav (Geological Survey of Sweden (SGU), Uppsala (Sweden)); Stroemgren, Maarten; Brydsten, Lars (Umeaa Univ., Umeaa (Sweden))

    2008-06-15

    At the Laxemar-Simpevarp site, numerical and descriptive modelling are performed both for the deep bedrock and for the surface systems. The surface geology and regolith depth are important parameters for e.g. hydrogeological and geochemical modelling and for the over all understanding of the area. Regolith refers to all the unconsolidated deposits overlying the bedrock. The regolith depth model (RDM) presented here visualizes the stratigraphical distribution of the regolith as well as the elevation of the bedrock surface. The model covers 280 km2 including both terrestrial and marine areas. In the model the stratigraphy is represented by six layers (Z1-Z6) that corresponds to different types of regolith. The model is geometric and the properties of the layers are assigned by the user according to the purpose. The GeoModel program, which is an ArcGIS extension, was used for modelling the regolith depths. A detailed topographical Digital Elevation Model (DEM) and a map of Quaternary deposits were used as input to the model. Altogether 319 boreholes and 440 other stratigraphical observations were also used. Furthermore a large number of depth data interpreted from geophysical investigations were used; refraction seismic measurements from 51 profiles, 11,000 observation points from resistivity measurements and almost 140,000 points from seismic and sediment echo sounding data. The results from the refraction seismic and resistivity measurements give information about the total regolith depths, whereas most other data also give information about the stratigraphy of the regolith. Some of the used observations did not reach the bedrock surface. They do, however, describe the minimum regolith depth at each location and were therefore used where the regolith depth would have been thinner without using the observation point. A large proportion of the modelled area has a low data density and the area was therefore divided into nine domains. These domains were defined based on

  9. 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

  10. Thermal System Modeling for Lunar and Martian Surface Regenerative Fuel Cell Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilligan, Ryan Patrick; Smith, Phillip James; Jakupca, Ian Joseph; Bennett, William Raymond; Guzik, Monica Christine; Fincannon, Homer J.

    2017-01-01

    The Advanced Exploration Systems (AES) Advanced Modular Power Systems (AMPS) Project is investigating different power systems for various lunar and Martian mission concepts. The AMPS Fuel Cell (FC) team has created two system-level models to evaluate the performance of regenerative fuel cell (RFC) systems employing different fuel cell chemistries. Proton Exchange Membrane fuel cells PEMFCs contain a polymer electrolyte membrane that separates the hydrogen and oxygen cavities and conducts hydrogen cations (protons) across the cell. Solid Oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) operate at high temperatures, using a zirconia-based solid ceramic electrolyte to conduct oxygen anions across the cell. The purpose of the modeling effort is to down select one fuel cell chemistry for a more detailed design effort. Figures of merit include the system mass, volume, round trip efficiency, and electrolyzer charge power required. PEMFCs operate at around 60 degrees Celsius versus SOFCs which operate at temperatures greater than 700 degrees Celsius. Due to the drastically different operating temperatures of the two chemistries the thermal control systems (TCS) differ. The PEM TCS is less complex and is characterized by a single pump cooling loop that uses deionized water coolant and rejects heat generated by the system to the environment via a radiator. The solid oxide TCS has its own unique challenges including the requirement to reject high quality heat and to condense the steam produced in the reaction. This paper discusses the modeling of thermal control systems for an extraterrestrial RFC that utilizes either a PEM or solid oxide fuel cell.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  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. Air Stripping Designs and Reactive Water Purification Processes for the Lunar Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boul, Peter J.; Lange, Kevin; Conger, Bruce; Anderson, Molly

    2010-01-01

    Air stripping designs are considered to reduce the presence of volatile organic compounds in the purified water. Components of the wastewater streams are ranked by Henry's Law Constant and the suitability of air stripping in the purification of wastewater in terms of component removal is evaluated. Distillation processes are modeled in tandem with air stripping to demonstrate the potential effectiveness and utility of these methods in recycling wastewater on the Moon. Scaling factors for distillation and air stripping columns are presented to account for the difference in the lunar gravitation environment. Commercially available distillation and air stripping units which are considered suitable for Exploration Life Support are presented. The advantages to the various designs are summarized with respect to water purity levels, power consumption, and processing rates. An evaluation of reactive distillation and air stripping is presented with regards to the reduction of volatile organic compounds in the contaminated water and air. Among the methods presented, an architecture is presented for the evaluation of the simultaneous oxidation of organics in air and water. These and other designs are presented in light of potential improvements in power consumptions and air and water purities for architectures which include catalytic activity integrated into the water processor. In particular, catalytic oxidation of organics may be useful as a tool to remove contaminants that more traditional distillation and/or air stripping columns may not remove. A review of the current leading edge at the commercial level and at the research frontier in catalytically active materials is presented. Themes and directions from the engineering developments in catalyst design are presented conceptually in light of developments in the nanoscale chemistry of a variety of catalyst materials.

  16. Rover exploration on the lunar surface; a science proposal for SELENE-B mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sasaki, S.; Kubota, T.; Akiyama, H.; Hirata, N.; Kunii, Y.; Matsumoto, K.; Okada, T.; Otake, M.; Saiki, K.; Sugihara, T.

    LUNARSURFACE:ASCIENCES. Sasaki (1), T. Kubota (2) , H. Akiyama (1) , N. Hirata (3), Y. Kunii (4), K. Matsumoto (5), T. Okada (2), M. Otake (3), K. Saiki (6), T. Sugihara (3) (1) Department of Earth and Planetary Science, Univ. Tokyo, (2) Institute of Space and Astronautical Sciences, (3) National Space Development Agency of Japan, (4) Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Chuo Univ., (5) National Aerospace Laboratory of Japan, (6) Research Institute of Materials and Resources, Akita Univ. sho@eps.s.u -tokyo.ac.jp/Fax:+81-3-5841-4569 A new lunar landing mission (SELENE-B) is now in consideration in Japan. Scientific investigation plans using a rover are proposed. To clarify the origin and evolution of the moon, the early crustal formation and later mare volcanic processes are still unveiled. We proposed two geological investigation plans: exploration of a crater central peak to discover subsurface materials and exploration of dome-cone structures on young mare region. We propose multi-band macro/micro camera using AOTF, X-ray spectrometer/diffractometer and gamma ray spectrometer. Since observation of rock fragments in brecciaed rocks is necessary, the rover should have cutting or scraping mechanism of rocks. In our current scenario, landing should be performed about 500m from the main target (foot of a crater central peak or a cone/dome). After the spectral survey by multi-band camera on the lander, the rover should be deployed for geological investigation. The rover should make a short (a few tens meter) round trip at first, then it should perform traverse observation toward the main target. Some technological investigations on SELENE-B project will be also presented.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. Basic radio interferometry for future lunar missions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aminaei, Amin; Klein Wolt, Marc; Chen, Linjie; Bronzwaer, Thomas; Pourshaghaghi, Hamid Reza; Bentum, Marinus Jan; Falcke, Heino

    2014-01-01

    In light of presently considered lunar missions, we investigate the feasibility of the basic radio interferometry (RIF) for lunar missions. We discuss the deployment of two-element radio interferometer on the Moon surface. With the first antenna element is envisaged to be placed on the lunar lander,

  1. 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

  2. Isotopic Evidence for Multi-stage Cosmic-ray Exposure Histories of Lunar Meteorites: Long Residence on the Moon and Short Transition to the Earth

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hidaka, Hiroshi; Sakuma, Keisuke [Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Nagoya University Nagoya 464-8601 (Japan); Nishiizumi, Kunihiko [Space Sciences Laboratory, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-7450 (United States); Yoneda, Shigekazu, E-mail: hidaka@eps.nagoya-u.ac.jp [Department of Science and Engineering, National Museum of Nature and Science Tsukuba 305-0005 (Japan)

    2017-06-01

    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 {sup 10}Be, {sup 26}Al, {sup 36}Cl, and {sup 41}Ca. Sm and Gd isotopic data of all of six meteorites show significant isotopic shifts of {sup 149}Sm–{sup 150}Sm and {sup 157}Gd–{sup 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{sup 16} n cm{sup −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.

  3. 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.

  4. Modeling the Impact Ejected Dust Contribution to the Lunar Exosphere: Results from Experiments and Ground Truth from LADEE

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermalyn, B.; Colaprete, A.

    2013-12-01

    A considerable body of evidence indicates the presence of lofted regolith dust above the lunar surface. These observations range from multiple in-situ and orbital horizon glow detections to direct measurement of dust motion on the surface, as by the Apollo 17 Lunar Ejecta and Meteorites (LEAM) experiment. Despite this evidence, the specific mechanisms responsible for the lofting of regolith are still actively debated. These include impact ejection, electrostatic lofting, effects of high energy radiation, UV/X- rays, and interplay with solar wind plasma. These processes are highly relevant to one of the two main scientific objectives of the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) mission (due to launch September, 2013): to directly measure the lunar exospheric dust environment and its spatial and temporal variability towards the goal of better understanding the dust flux. Of all the proposed mechanisms taking place on the lunar surface, the only unequivocal ongoing process is impact cratering. Hypervelocity impact events, which mobilize and redistribute regolith across planetary surfaces, are arguably the most pervasive geologic process on rocky bodies. While many studies of dust lofting state that the impact flux rate is orders of magnitude too low to account for the lunar horizon glow phenomenon and discount its contribution, it is imperative to re-examine these assumptions in light of new data on impact ejecta, particularly from the contributions from mesoscale (impactor size on the order of grain size) and macroscale (impactor > grain size) cratering. This is in large part due to a previous lack of data, for while past studies have established a canonical ejecta model for main-stage ejection of sand targets from vertical impacts, only recent studies have been able to begin quantitatively probing the intricacies of the ejection process outside this main-stage, vertical regime. In particular, it is the high-speed early-time ejecta that will reach

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Smart Multifunction Antenna for Lunar/Planetary Surface Network, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA is planning a series of human and robotic missions to explore the Moon and later Mars. According to NASA SBIR topic O1.10, surface networks are needed for these...

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. Man-Made Debris In and From Lunar Orbit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Nicholas L.; McKay, Gordon A. (Technical Monitor)

    1999-01-01

    During 1966-1976, as part of the first phase of lunar exploration, 29 manned and robotic missions placed more than 40 objects into lunar orbit. Whereas several vehicles later successfully landed on the Moon and/or returned to Earth, others were either abandoned in orbit or intentionally sent to their destruction on the lunar surface. The former now constitute a small population of lunar orbital debris; the latter, including four Lunar Orbiters and four Lunar Module ascent stages, have contributed to nearly 50 lunar sites of man's refuse. Other lunar satellites are known or suspected of having fallen from orbit. Unlike Earth satellite orbital decays and deorbits, lunar satellites impact the lunar surface unscathed by atmospheric burning or melting. Fragmentations of lunar satellites, which would produce clouds of numerous orbital debris, have not yet been detected. The return to lunar orbit in the 1990's by the Hagoromo, Hiten, Clementine, and Lunar Prospector spacecraft and plans for increased lunar exploration early in the 21st century, raise questions of how best to minimize and to dispose of lunar orbital debris. Some of the lessons learned from more than 40 years of Earth orbit exploitation can be applied to the lunar orbital environment. For the near-term, perhaps the most important of these is postmission passivation. Unique solutions, e.g., lunar equatorial dumps, may also prove attractive. However, as with Earth satellites, debris mitigation measures are most effectively adopted early in the concept and design phase, and prevention is less costly than remediation.

  12. M3 spectral analysis of lunar swirls and the link between optical maturation and surface hydroxyl formation at magnetic anomalies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kramer, G.Y.; Besse, S.; Dhingra, D.; Nettles, J.; Klima, R.; Garrick-Bethell, I.; Clark, Roger N.; Combe, J.-P.; Head, J. W.; Taylor, L.A.; Pieters, C.M.; Boardman, J.; McCord, T.B.

    2011-01-01

    We examined the lunar swirls using data from the Moon Mineralogy Mapper (M3). The improved spectral and spatial resolution of M3 over previous spectral imaging data facilitates distinction of subtle spectral differences, and provides new information about the nature of these enigmatic features. We characterized spectral features of the swirls, interswirl regions (dark lanes), and surrounding terrain for each of three focus regions: Reiner Gamma, Gerasimovich, and Mare Ingenii. We used Principle Component Analysis to identify spectrally distinct surfaces at each focus region, and characterize the spectral features that distinguish them. We compared spectra from small, recent impact craters with the mature soils into which they penetrated to examine differences in maturation trends on- and off-swirl. Fresh, on-swirl crater spectra are higher albedo, exhibit a wider range in albedos and have well-preserved mafic absorption features compared with fresh off-swirl craters. Albedoand mafic absorptions are still evident in undisturbed, on-swirl surface soils, suggesting the maturation process is retarded. The spectral continuum is more concave compared with off-swirl spectra; a result of the limited spectral reddening being mostly constrained to wavelengths less than ∼1500 nm. Off-swirl spectra show very little reddening or change in continuum shape across the entire M3 spectral range. Off-swirl spectra are dark, have attenuated absorption features, and the narrow range in off-swirl albedos suggests off-swirl regions mature rapidly. Spectral parameter maps depicting the relative OH surface abundance for each of our three swirl focus regions were created using the depth of the hydroxyl absorption feature at 2.82 μm. For each of the studied regions, the 2.82 μm absorption feature is significantly weaker on-swirl than off-swirl, indicating the swirls are depleted in OH relative to their surroundings. The spectral characteristics of the swirls and adjacent terrains

  13. 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...

  14. International lunar observatory / power station: from Hawaii to the Moon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durst, S.

    Astronomy's great advantages from the Moon are well known - stable surface, diffuse atmosphere, long cool nights (14 days), low gravity, far side radio frequency silence. A large variety of astronomical instruments and observations are possible - radio, optical and infrared telescopes and interferometers; interferometry for ultra- violet to sub -millimeter wavelengths and for very long baselines, including Earth- Moon VLBI; X-ray, gamma-ray, cosmic ray and neutrino detection; very low frequency radio observation; and more. Unparalleled advantages of lunar observatories for SETI, as well as for local surveillance, Earth observation, and detection of Earth approaching objects add significant utility to lunar astronomy's superlatives. At least nine major conferences in the USA since 1984 and many elsewhere, as well as ILEWG, IAF, IAA, LEDA and other organizations' astronomy-from-the-Moon research indicate a lunar observatory / power station, robotic at first, will be one of the first mission elements for a permanent lunar base. An international lunar observatory will be a transcending enterprise, highly principled, indispensable, soundly and broadly based, and far- seeing. Via Astra - From Hawaii to the Moon: The astronomy and scie nce communities, national space agencies and aerospace consortia, commercial travel and tourist enterprises and those aspiring to advance humanity's best qualities, such as Aloha, will recognize Hawaii in the 21st century as a new major support area and pan- Pacific port of embarkation to space, the Moon and beyond. Astronomical conditions and facilities on Hawaii's Mauna Kea provide experience for construction and operation of observatories on the Moon. Remote and centrally isolated, with diffuse atmosphere, sub-zero temperature and limited working mobility, the Mauna Kea complex atop the 4,206 meter summit of the largest mountain on the planet hosts the greatest collection of large astronomical telescopes on Earth. Lunar, extraterrestrial

  15. Lunar Meteorites: A Global Geochemical Dataset

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeigler, R. A.; Joy, K. H.; Arai, T.; Gross, J.; Korotev, R. L.; McCubbin, F. M.

    2017-01-01

    bulk of the chapter will use examples from the lunar meteorite suite to examine important recent advances in lunar science, including (but not limited to the following: (1) Understanding the global compositional diversity of the lunar surface; (2) Understanding the formation of the ancient lunar primary crust; (3) Understanding the diversity and timing of mantle melting, and secondary crust formation; (4) Comparing KREEPy lunar meteorites to KREEPy Apollo samples as evidence of variability within the PKT; and (5) A better understanding of the South Pole Aitken Basin through lunar meteorites whose provenance are within that Terrane.

  16. Global silicate mineralogy of the Moon from the Diviner lunar radiometer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenhagen, Benjamin T; Lucey, Paul G; Wyatt, Michael B; Glotch, Timothy D; Allen, Carlton C; Arnold, Jessica A; Bandfield, Joshua L; Bowles, Neil E; Donaldson Hanna, Kerri L; Hayne, Paul O; Song, Eugenie; Thomas, Ian R; Paige, David A

    2010-09-17

    We obtained direct global measurements of the lunar surface using multispectral thermal emission mapping with the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Diviner Lunar Radiometer Experiment. Most lunar terrains have spectral signatures that are consistent with known lunar anorthosite and basalt compositions. However, the data have also revealed the presence of highly evolved, silica-rich lunar soils in kilometer-scale and larger exposures, expanded the compositional range of the anorthosites that dominate the lunar crust, and shown that pristine lunar mantle is not exposed at the lunar surface at the kilometer scale. Together, these observations provide compelling evidence that the Moon is a complex body that has experienced a diverse set of igneous processes.

  17. Robotic Subsurface Analyzer and Sample Handler for Resource Reconnaissance and Preliminary Site Assessment for ISRU Activities at the Lunar Cold Traps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorevan, S. P.; Wilson, J.; Bartlett, P.; Powderly, J.; Lawrence, D.; Elphic, R.; Mungas, G.; McCullough, E.; Stoker, C.; Cannon, H.

    2004-01-01

    Since the 1960s, claims have been made that water ice deposits should exist in permanently shadowed craters near both lunar poles. Recent interpretations of data from the Lunar Prospector-Neutron Spectrometer (LP- NS) confirm that significant concentrations of hydrogen exist, probably in the form of water ice, in the permanently shadowed polar cold traps. Yet, due to the large spatial resolution (45-60 Ian) of the LP-NS measurements relative to these shadowed craters (approx.5-25 km), these data offer little certainty regarding the precise location, form or distribution of these deposits. Even less is known about how such deposits of water ice might effect lunar regolith physical properties relevant to mining, excavation, water extraction and construction. These uncertainties will need to be addressed in order to validate fundamental lunar In Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) precepts by 2011. Given the importance of the in situ utilization of water and other resources to the future of space exploration a need arises for the advanced deployment of a robotic and reconfigurable system for physical properties and resource reconnaissance. Based on a collection of high-TRL. designs, the Subsurface Analyzer and Sample Handler (SASH) addresses these needs, particularly determining the location and form of water ice and the physical properties of regolith. SASH would be capable of: (1) subsurface access via drilling, on the order of 3-10 meters into both competent targets (ice, rock) and regolith, (2) down-hole analysis through drill string embedded instrumentation and sensors (Neutron Spectrometer and Microscopic Imager), enabling water ice identification and physical properties measurements; (3) core and unconsolidated sample acquisition from rock and regolith; (4) sample handling and processing, with minimized contamination, sample containerization and delivery to a modular instrument payload. This system would be designed with three mission enabling goals, including: (1

  18. 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...

  19. 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...

  20. The MELiSSA GreenMOSS Study: Preliminary Design Considerations for a Greenhouse Module on the Lunar Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lobascio, Cesare; Paille, Christel; Lamantea, Matteo Maria; Boscheri, Giorgio; Rossetti, Vittorio

    Extended human presence on an extraterrestrial planetary surface will be made possible by the development of life support systems affordable in the long term. The key elements to support the goal will be the maximization of closure of air and water cycles, as well as the development of cost-effective and reliable hardware, including a careful strategic effort toward reduction of spare parts and consumables. Regenerative life support systems likely represent the final step toward long term sustainability of a space crew, allowing in situ food production and regeneration of organic waste. Referring to the MELiSSA loop, a key element for food production is the Higher Plant Compartment. The paper focuses on the preliminary design of a Greenhouse at the lunar South Pole, as performed within the “Greenhouse Module for Space System” (GreenMOSS) study, under a contract from the European Space Agency. The greenhouse is in support to a relatively small crew for provision of an energetic food complement. Resources necessary for the greenhouse such as water, carbon dioxide and nitrogen are assumed available, as required. The relevant mass and energy balances for incoming resources should be part of future studies, and should help integrate this element with the interfacing MELISSA compartments. Net oxygen production and harvested crop biomass from the greenhouse system will be quantified. This work presents the results of the two major trade-offs performed as part of this study: artificial vs natural illumination and monocrop vs multicrop solutions. Comparisons among possible design solutions were driven by the ALiSSE metric as far as practicable within this preliminary stage, considering mass and power parameters. Finally, the paper presents the mission duration threshold for determining the convenience of the designed solution with respect to other resources provision strategies

  1. Potassium Rankine cycle power conversion systems for lunar-Mars surface power

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Holcomb, R.S.

    1992-01-01

    The potassium Rankine cycle has good potential for application to nuclear power systems for surface power on the moon and Mars. A substantial effort on the development of the power conversion system was carried out in the 1960's which demonstrated successful operation of components made of stainless steel at moderate temperatures. This technology could be applied in the near term to produce a 360 kW(e) power system by coupling a stainless steel power conversion system to the SP-100 reactor. Improved performance could be realized in later systems by utilizing niobium or tantalum refractory metal alloys in the reactor and power conversion system. The design characteristics and estimated mass of power systems for each of three technology levels are presented in the paper

  2. The influence of surface roughness on volatile transport on the Moon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prem, P.; Goldstein, D. B.; Varghese, P. L.; Trafton, L. M.

    2018-01-01

    The Moon and other virtually airless bodies provide distinctive environments for the transport and sequestration of water and other volatiles delivered to their surfaces by various sources. In this work, we conduct Monte Carlo simulations of water vapor transport on the Moon to investigate the role of small-scale roughness (unresolved by orbital measurements) in the migration and cold-trapping of volatiles. Observations indicate that surface roughness, combined with the insulating nature of lunar regolith and the absence of significant exospheric heat flow, can cause large variations in temperature over very small scales. Surface temperature has a strong influence on the residence time of migrating water molecules on the lunar surface, which in turn affects the rate and magnitude of volatile transport to permanently shadowed craters (cold traps) near the lunar poles, as well as exospheric structure and the susceptibility of migrating molecules to photodestruction. Here, we develop a stochastic rough surface temperature model suitable for simulations of volatile transport on a global scale, and compare the results of Monte Carlo simulations of volatile transport with and without the surface roughness model. We find that including small-scale temperature variations and shadowing leads to a slight increase in cold-trapping at the lunar poles, accompanied by a slight decrease in photodestruction. Exospheric structure is altered only slightly, primarily at the dawn terminator. We also examine the sensitivity of our results to the temperature of small-scale shadows, and the energetics of water molecule desorption from the lunar regolith - two factors that remain to be definitively constrained by other methods - and find that both these factors affect the rate at which cold trap capture and photodissociation occur, as well as exospheric density and longevity.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. A Multi-Wavelength Grain-by-Grain Survey of Lunar Soils in Search of Rare Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crites, S.; Lucey, P. G.; Viti, T.

    2014-12-01

    The Moon is unique among terrestrial planets for its lack of an atmosphere and global tectonic or volcanic processes. These factors and its position in the inner solar system mean that it is a potential repository of meteoritic material from all of the terrestrial planets. The National Research Council's 2007 report on the Scientific Context for the Exploration of the Moon highlighted this unique possibility and defined the search for rare materials including those from the early Earth as a key goal for future lunar exploration. Armstrong et al. (2002) estimated that Earth material could be present at the 7 ppm level in surface lunar regolith and emphasized that since a single gram of lunar fines contains over 10 million particles, the search for terran material in lunar soils should begin with the current stock of lunar samples. Joy et al. (2012) demonstrated that mineral and lithologic relics of impactors can survive and be recognized in lunar samples, and recent work by Burchell et al. (2014) suggests that fossil fragments from Earth could survive the extreme shocks associated with transport to the Moon. Following the concept laid out by Armstrong et al. (2002), we are conducting a survey of lunar soil samples using microscopic hyperspectral imaging spectroscopy across visible, near-infrared, and thermal infrared wavelengths to conduct a search for rare particles, including those that could be sourced from the early Earth. Our system currently consists of three microscopic imaging spectrometers with ~30 micron spatial resolution, permitting resolved imaging of individual grains. Fields of view of at least 1 cm and scan rates near 1 mm/sec permit rapid processing of relatively large quantities of sample. Existing spectrometers cover the 0.5 to 2.5 micron region, permitting detection and characterization of the common iron-bearing lunar minerals olivine and pyroxene, and the 8-14 micron region, which permits detection of other, rarer minerals of interest such as

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. Influence of the mole penetrator on measurements of heat flow in lunar subsurface layers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wawrzaszek, Roman; Drogosz, Michal; Seweryn, Karol; Banaszkiewicz, Marek; Grygorczuk, Jerzy

    Measuring the thermal gradient in subsurface layers is a basic method of determination the heat flux from the interior of a planetary body to its surface. In case of the Moon, such measurements complemented with the results of theoretical analysis and modeling can significantly improve our understanding of the thermal and geological evolution of the Moon. In practice, temperature gradient measurements are performed by at least two sensors located at different depths under the surface. These sensors will be attached to a penetrator [1] or to a cable pulled behind the penetrator. In both cases the object that carries the sensors, e.g. penetrator, perturb temperature measurements. In our study we analyze a case of two thermal sensors attached to the ends of 350mm long penetrator made of a composite material. In agreement with the studies of other authors we have found that the penetrator should be placed at the depth of 2-3 meters, where periodic changes of the temperature due to variation of solar flux at the surface are significantly smaller than the error of temperature measurement. The most important result of our analysis is to show how to deconvolve the real gradient of the temperature from the measurements perturbed by the penetrator body. In this way it will be possible to more accurately determine heat flux in the lunar regolith. [1] Grygorczuk J., Seweryn K., Wawrzaszek R., Banaszkiewicz M., Insertion of a Mole Pene-trator -Experimental Results, /39th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference /League City, Texas 2008

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  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. 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

  13. 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

  14. The enigma of lunar magnetism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hood, L. L.

    1981-01-01

    Current understandings of the nature and probable origin of lunar magnetism are surveyed. Results of examinations of returned lunar samples are discussed which reveal the main carrier of the observed natural remanent magnetization to be iron, occasionally alloyed with nickel and cobalt, but do not distinguish between thermoremanent and shock remanent origins, and surface magnetometer data is presented, which indicates small-scale magnetic fields with a wide range of field intensities implying localized, near-surface sources. A detailed examination is presented of orbital magnetometer and charged particle data concerning the geologic nature and origin of magnetic anomaly sources and the directional properties of the magnetization, which exhibit a random distribution except for a depletion in the north-south direction. A lunar magnetization survey with global coverage provided by a polar orbiting satellite is suggested as a means of placing stronger constraints on the origin of lunar crustal magnetization.

  15. 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.

  16. Lunar Topography: Results from the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neumann, Gregory; Smith, David E.; Zuber, Maria T.; Mazarico, Erwan

    2012-01-01

    The Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA) onboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) has been operating nearly continuously since July 2009, accumulating over 6 billion measurements from more than 2 billion in-orbit laser shots. LRO's near-polar orbit results in very high data density in the immediate vicinity of the lunar poles, with full coverage at the equator from more than 12000 orbital tracks averaging less than 1 km in spacing at the equator. LRO has obtained a global geodetic model of the lunar topography with 50-meter horizontal and 1-m radial accuracy in a lunar center-of-mass coordinate system, with profiles of topography at 20-m horizontal resolution, and 0.1-m vertical precision. LOLA also provides measurements of reflectivity and surface roughness down to its 5-m laser spot size. With these data LOLA has measured the shape of all lunar craters 20 km and larger. In the proposed extended mission commencing late in 2012, LOLA will concentrate observations in the Southern Hemisphere, improving the density of the polar coverage to nearly 10-m pixel resolution and accuracy to better than 20 m total position error. Uses for these data include mission planning and targeting, illumination studies, geodetic control of images, as well as lunar geology and geophysics. Further improvements in geodetic accuracy are anticipated from the use of re ned gravity fields after the successful completion of the Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) mission in 2012.

  17. Effects of Crystallinity, Composition, and Texture on Hydrogen Solubility and Adsorption in Lunar Surface Materials and their Relevance to Remote Sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dyar, M. D.; Hibbitts, C.; Orlando, T. M.; Poston, M.; Grieves, G. A.

    2011-12-01

    Abundant spacecraft data now demonstrate the presence of features associated with H on the lunar surface. The origin of that lunar H, whether as OH or H2O, is some combination of endogenic (juvenile) sources in the interiors of planetary materials and those resulting from exogenic deposition such as from the solar wind or comets. The ability of mineral (rock) and glass surfaces to internally host and surficially adsorb H is a function of several interrelated variables -- composition, crystallinity, and texture -- all of which will have an effect on observed band depth in remote sensing measurements. Studies of terrestrial materials show that the ability of nominally-anhydrous minerals to host H is related to composition in ways that reflect partition coefficients for H between melt and mineral, variations in bond strengths, and defect densities. This is important because the ability of a mineral to adsorb water on its exterior surface (chemisorption) should be related to some of the same factors that govern 'solubility' of H in the interiors of different mineral groups and compositions. IR signatures of internal OH/H2O can easily be confused with those of adsorbed OH/H2O. No correlation between H solubility and surface adsorptivity is observed in pristine glasses, which generally have passivated bonds on the surface and are hydrophobic. However, on the Moon, glass 'matures' rapidly via micrometeorite bombardment, potentially exposing dangling bonds on the surface that provide sites for H to adsorb. Unlike glasses, crystalline materials provide both defect lattice sites and dangling bonds on freshly-fractured surfaces that may enhance H adsorption. For example, bonding on mineral surfaces ranges from hydrogen bonding at non-lattice oxygen atoms (electronegative sites) to chemisorption at electropositive surface sites, such as structural defects or unsatisfied cations. Moreover, glasses and different mineral species also have different optical absorption coefficients

  18. 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...

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. Geologic Mapping of the Lunar South Pole, Quadrangle LQ-30: Volcanic History and Stratigraphy of Schroedinger Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mest, S. C.; Berman, D. C.; Petro, N. E.

    2009-01-01

    In this study we use recent images and topographic data to map the geology and geomorphology of the lunar South Pole quadrangle (LQ-30) at 1:2.5M scale [1-4] in accordance with the Lunar Geologic Mapping Program. Mapping of LQ-30 began during Mest's postdoctoral appointment and has continued under the PG&G Program, from which funding became available in February 2009. Preliminary map-ping and analyses have been done using base materials compiled by Mest, but properly mosaicked and spatially registered base materials are being compiled by the USGS and should be received by the end of June 2009. The overall objective of this research is to constrain the geologic evolution of the lunar South Pole (LQ-30: 60deg -90deg S, 0deg - +/-180deg ) with specific emphasis on evaluation of a) the regional effects of basin formation on the structure and composition of the crust and b) the spatial distribution of ejecta, in particular resulting from formation of the South Pole-Aitken (SPA) basin and other large basins. Key scientific objectives include: 1) Constraining the geologic history of the lunar South Pole and examining the spatial and temporal variability of geologic processes within the map area. 2) Constraining the vertical and lateral structure of the lunar regolith and crust, assessing the distribution of impact-generated materials, and determining the timing and effects of major basin-forming impacts on crustal structure and stratigraphy in the map area. And 3) assessing the distribution of resources (e.g., H, Fe, Th) and their relationships with surface materials.

  2. 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).

  3. Lunar Wormbot: Design and Development of a Ground Base Robotic Tunneling Worm for Operation in Harsh Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyles, Charles; Eledui, Emory; Gasser, Ben; Johnson, Josh; Long, Jay " Ben" Toy, Nathan; Murphy, Gloria

    2011-01-01

    From 1969 to 1972, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) sent Apollo missions to the moon to conduct various exploration experiment. A few of the missions were directed to the study and sampling of moon soil, otherwise known as lunar regolith. The extent of the sample acquisition was limited due to the astronauts' limited ability to penetrate the moon's surface to a depth greater than three meters. However. the samples obtained were sufficient enough to provide key information pertaining to lunar regolith material properties that would further assist in future exploration endeavors. Analysis of the collected samples showed that the properties of lunar regolith may lead to knowledge of processed materials that will be beneficial for future human exploration or colonization. However, almost 40 years after the last Apollo mission, limited infonnation is known about regions underneath the moon's surface. Future lunar missions will require hardware that possesses the ability to burrow to greater depths in order to collect samples for subsequent analysis. During the summer of 2010, a team (Dr. Jessica Gaskin, Michael Kuhlman. Blaze Sanders, and Lafe Zabowski) from the NASA Robotics Academy at Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) was given the task of designing a robot to function as a soil collection and analysis device. Working with the National Space Science and Technology Center (NSSTC), the team was able to propose an initial design, build a prototype, and test the various subsystems of the prototype to be known as the "Lunar Wormbot" (LW). The NASA/NSSTC team then transferred the project to a University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE) senior design class for further development. The UAH team was to utilize the NASA Systems Engineering Engine Design Process in the continuance of the Lunar Wormbot project. This process was implemented in order to coordinate the efforts of the team and guide the design of the

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. Lunar and Meteorite Sample Education Disk Program - Space Rocks for Classrooms, Museums, Science Centers, and Libraries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Jaclyn; Luckey, M.; McInturff, B.; Huynh, P.; Tobola, K.; Loftin, L.

    2010-01-01

    NASA is eager for students and the public to experience lunar Apollo samples and meteorites first hand. Lunar rocks and soil, embedded in Lucite disks, 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 reveals the early history of our Earth-Moon system and meteorites reveal much of the history of the early solar system. The rocks help educators make the connections to this ancient history of our planet and solar system and the basic processes accretion, differentiation, 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 many NASA planetary missions. 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 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

  7. 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.

  8. Thermodynamics of lunar ilmenite reduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altenberg, B. H.; Franklin, H. A.; Jones, C. H.

    1993-01-01

    With the prospect of returning to the moon, the development of a lunar occupation would fulfill one of the goals of the Space Exploration Initiative (SEI) of the late 1980's. Processing lunar resources into useful products, such as liquid oxygen for fuel and life support, would be one of many aspects of an active lunar base. ilmenite (FeTiO3) is found on the lunar surface and can be used as a feed stock to produce oxygen. Understanding the various ilmenite-reduction reactions elucidates many processing options. Defining the thermodynamic chemical behavior at equilibrium under various conditions of temperature and pressures can be helpful in specifying optimal operating conditions. Differences between a previous theoretical analysis and experimentally determined results has sparked interest in trying to understand the effect of operating pressure on the hydrogen-reduction-of-ilmenite reaction. Various aspects of this reduction reaction are discussed.

  9. Design and Construction of Manned Lunar Base

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Zhijie

    2016-07-01

    Building manned lunar base is one of the core aims of human lunar exploration project, which is also an important way to carry out the exploitation and utilization of lunar in situ resources. The most important part of manned lunar base is the design and construction of living habitation and many factors should be considered including science objective and site selection. Through investigating and research, the scientific goals of manned lunar base should be status and characteristics ascertainment of lunar available in situ resources, then developing necessary scientific experiments and utilization of lunar in situ resources by using special environment conditions of lunar surface. The site selection strategy of manned lunar base should rely on scientific goals according to special lunar surface environment and engineering capacity constraints, meanwhile, consulting the landing sites of foreign unmanned and manned lunar exploration, and choosing different typical regions of lunar surface and analyzing the landform and physiognomy, reachability, thermal environment, sunlight condition, micro meteoroids protection and utilization of in situ resources, after these steps, a logical lunar living habitation site should be confirmed. This paper brings out and compares three kinds of configurations with fabricating processes of manned lunar base, including rigid module, flexible and construction module manned lunar base. 1.The rigid habitation module is usually made by metal materials. The design and fabrication may consult the experience of space station, hence with mature technique. Because this configuration cannot be folded or deployed, which not only afford limit working and living room for astronauts, but also needs repetitious cargo transit between earth and moon for lunar base extending. 2. The flexible module habitation can be folded in fairing while launching. When deploying on moon, the configuration can be inflatable or mechanically-deployed, which means under

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Distribution and evolution of Zn, Cd, and Pb in Apollo 16 regolith samples and the average U-Pb ages of the parent rocks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cirlin, E. H.; Housley, R. M.

    1982-01-01

    The concentration of surface (low temperature site) and interior (high temperature site) Cd, Zn, and Pb in 13 Apollo 16 highland fines samples, pristine rock 65325, and mare fines sample 75081 were analyzed directly from the thermal release profiles obtained by flameless atomic absorption technique (FLAA). Cd and Zn in pristine ferroan anothosite 65325, anorthositic grains of the most mature fines 65701, and basaltic rock fragments of mare fines 75081 were almost all surface Cd and Zn indicating that most volatiles were deposited on the surfaces of vugs, vesicles and microcracks during the initial cooling process. A considerable amount of interior Cd and Zn was observed in agglutinates. This result suggests that high temperature site interior volatiles originate from entrapment during the lunar maturation processes. Interior Cd found in the most mature fines sample 65701 was only about 15% of the total Cd in the sample. Interior Pb present in Apollo 16 fines samples went up to 60%. From our Cd studies we can assume that this interior Pb in highland fines samples is largely due to the radiogenic decay which occurred after the redistribution of the volatiles took place. We obtained an average age of 4.0 b.y. for the parent rocks of Apollo 16 highland regolith from our interior Pb analyses.

  13. 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.

  14. Ancient Bombardment of the Inner Solar System: Reinvestigation of the "Fingerprints" of Different Impactor Populations on the Lunar Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orgel, Csilla; Michael, Gregory; Fassett, Caleb I.; van der Bogert, Carolyn H.; Riedel, Christian; Kneissl, Thomas; Hiesinger, Harald

    2018-03-01

    The lunar cratering record provides valuable information about the late accretion history of the inner solar system. However, our understanding of the origin, rate, and timing of the impacting projectiles is far from complete. To learn more about these projectiles, we can examine crater size-frequency distributions (CSFDs) on the Moon. Here we reinvestigate the crater populations of 30 lunar basins (≥ 300 km) using the buffered nonsparseness correction technique, which takes crater obliteration into account, thus providing more accurate measurements for the frequencies of smaller crater sizes. Moreover, we revisit the stratigraphic relationships of basins based on N(20) crater frequencies, absolute model ages, and observation data. The buffered nonsparseness correction-corrected CSFDs of individual basins, particularly at smaller crater diameters are shifted upward. Contrary to previous studies, the shapes of the summed CSFDs of Pre-Nectarian (excluding South Pole-Aitken Basin), Nectarian (including Nectaris), and Imbrian (including Imbrium) basins show no statistically significant differences and thus provide no evidence for a change of impactor population.

  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. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Lunar nitrogen: Secular variation or mixing?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Norris, S.J.; Wright, I.P.; Pillinger, C.T.

    1986-01-01

    The two current models to explain the nearly 40% variation of the lunar nitrogen isotopic composition are: (1) secular variation of solar wind nitrogen; and (2) a two component mixing model having a constant, heavy solar wind admixed with varying amounts of indigenous light lunar N (LLN). Both models are needed to explain the step pyrolysis extraction profile. The secular variation model proposes that the low temperature release is modern day solar wind implanted into grain surfaces, the 900 C to 1100 C release is from grain surfaces which were once exposed to the ancient solar wind but which are now trapped inside agglutinates, and the >1100 C release as spallogenic N produced by cosmic rays. The mixing model ascribes the components to solar wind, indigenous lunar N and spallogenic N respectively. An extension of either interpretation is that the light N seen in lunar breccias or deep drill cores represent conditions when more N-14 was available to the lunar surface

  19. 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

  20. Design of guidance laws for lunar pinpoint soft landing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Guo, J.; Han, C.

    2009-01-01

    Future lunar missions ask for the capability to perform precise Guidance, Navigation and Control (GNC) to the selected landing sites on the lunar surface. This paper studies the guidance issues for the lunar pinpoint soft landing problem. The primary contribution of this paper is the design of

  1. 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).

  2. 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.

  3. Report from International Lunar Exploration Working Group (ILEWG) to COSPAR

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foing, Bernard H.

    We refer to COSPAR and ILEWG ICEUM and lunar conferences and declarations [1-18]. We discuss how lunar missions SMART-1, Kaguya, Chang'E1&2, Chandrayaan-1, LCROSS, LRO, GRAIL, LADEE, Chang'E3 and upcoming missions contribute to lunar exploration objectives & roadmap. We present the GLUC/ICEUM11 declaration and give a report on ongoing relevant ILEWG community activities, with focus on: “1. Science and exploration - World-wide access to raw and derived (geophysical units) data products using consistent formats and coordinate systems will maximize return on investment. We call to develop and implement plans for generation, validation, and release of these data products. Data should be made available for scientific analysis and supporting the development and planning of future missions - There are still Outstanding Questions: Structure and composition of crust, mantle, and core and implications for the origin and evolution of the Earth-Moon system; Timing, origin, and consequences of late heavy bombardment; Impact processes and regolith evolution; Nature and origin of volatile emplacement; Implications for resource utilization. These questions require international cooperation and sharing of results in order to be answered in a cost-effective manner - Ground truth information on the lunar far side is missing and needed to address many important scientific questions, e.g. with a sample return from South Pole-Aitken Basin - Knowledge of the interior is poor relative to the surface, and is needed to address a number of key questions, e.g. with International Lunar Network for seismometry and other geophysical measurements - Lunar missions will be driven by exploration, resource utilization, and science; we should consider minimum science payload for every mission, e.g., landers and rovers should carry instruments to determine surface composition and mineralogy - It is felt important to have a shared database about previous missions available for free, so as to provide

  4. 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.

  5. Precision Lunar Laser Ranging For Lunar and Gravitational Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merkowitz, S. M.; Arnold, D.; Dabney, P. W.; Livas, J. C.; McGarry, J. F.; Neumann, G. A.; Zagwodzki, T. W.

    2008-01-01

    Laser ranging to retroreflector arrays placed on the lunar surface by the Apollo astronauts and the Soviet Lunar missions over the past 39 years have dramatically increased our understanding of gravitational physics along with Earth and Moon geophysics, geodesy, and dynamics. Significant advances in these areas will require placing modern retroreflectors and/or active laser ranging systems at new locations on the lunar surface. Ranging to new locations will enable better measurements of the lunar librations, aiding in our understanding of the interior structure of the moon. More precise range measurements will allow us to study effects that are too small to be observed by the current capabilities as well as enabling more stringent tests of Einstein's theory of General Relativity. Setting up retroreflectors was a key part of the Apollo missions so it is natural to ask if future lunar missions should include them as well. The Apollo retroreflectors are still being used today, and nearly 40 years of ranging data has been invaluable for scientific as well as other studies such as orbital dynamics. However, the available retroreflectors all lie within 26 degrees latitude of the equator, and the most useful ones within 24 degrees longitude of the sub-earth meridian. This clustering weakens their geometrical strength.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. Lunar Industry & Research Base Concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lysenko, J.; Kaliapin, M.; Osinovyy, G.

    2017-09-01

    Currently, all main space industry players, such as Europe, USA, Russia, China, etc., are looking back again at the idea of Moon exploration building there a manned lunar base. Alongside with other world spacefaring nations, Yuzhnoye State Design Office with its long-time development experience, technological and intellectual potential, organized its own conceptual work on development of the Lunar Industry & Research Base. In the frames of conceptual project "Lunar Industrial & Research Base" were formed its appearance, preliminary configuration and infrastructure at different stages of operation, trajectory and flight scheme to the Moon, as well as terms of the project's realization, and main technical characteristics of the systems under development, such as space transportation system for crew and cargo delivery to lunar surface and return to Earth, standardized designs of lunar modules, lunar surface vehicles, etc. The "Lunar Industrial & Research Base" project's preliminary risk assessment has shown a high value of its overall risk due to the lack of reliable information about the Moon, technical risks, long-term development of its elements, very high financial costs and dependence on state support. This points to the fact that it is reasonable to create such a global project in cooperation with other countries. International cooperation will expand the capabilities of any nation, reduce risks and increase the success probability of automated or manned space missions. It is necessary to create and bring into operation practical mechanisms for long-term space exploration on a global scale. One of the ways to do this is to create a multinational agency which would include both state enterprises and private companies.

  9. Lunar feldspathic meteorites: Constraints on the geology of the lunar highlands, and the origin of the lunar crust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gross, Juliane; Treiman, Allan H.; Mercer, Celestine N.

    2014-02-01

    The composition of the lunar crust provides clues about the processes that formed it and hence contains information on the origin and evolution of the Moon. Current understanding of lunar evolution is built on the Lunar Magma Ocean hypothesis that early in its history, the Moon was wholly or mostly molten. This hypothesis is based on analyses of Apollo samples of ferroan anorthosites (>90% plagioclase; molar Mg/(Mg+Fe)=Mg#Moon's surface, and remote sensing data, show that ferroan anorthosites are not globally distributed and that the Apollo highland samples, used as a basis for the model, are influenced by ejecta from the Imbrium basin. In this study we evaluate anorthosites from all currently available adequately described lunar highland meteorites, representing a more widespread sampling of the lunar highlands than Apollo samples alone, and find that ∼80% of them are significantly more magnesian than Apollo ferroan anorthosites. Interestingly, Luna mission anorthosites, collected outside the continuous Imbrium ejecta, are also highly magnesian. If the lunar highland crust consists dominantly of magnesian anorthosites, as suggested by their abundance in samples sourced outside Imbrium ejecta, a reevaluation of the Lunar Magma Ocean model is a sensible step forward in the endeavor to understand lunar evolution. Our results demonstrate that lunar anorthosites are more similar in their chemical trends and mineral abundance to terrestrial massif anorthosites than to anorthosites predicted in a Lunar Magma Ocean. This analysis does not invalidate the idea of a Lunar Magma Ocean, which seems a necessity under the giant impact hypothesis for the origin of the moon. However, it does indicate that most rocks now seen at the Moon's surface are not primary products of a magma ocean alone, but are products of more complex crustal processes.

  10. 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