Journal article Open Access

An ISRU-Based Architecture for Human Habitats on Mars: the 'Lava Hive' Concept

Cowley, Aidan; Imhof, Barbara; Teeney, Leo; Waclavicek, Rene'; Spina, Francesco; Canals, Alberto; Schleppi,Juergen; Soriano, Pablo Lopez

We detail the overall structural architecture for a Class III Mars habitat intended for human exploration missions, constructed utilizing a robust and simple \textit{in-situ} resource utilization  (ISRU)  approach  we  have  termed  `lava  casting'.  The  habitat  concept  is based on a hybrid approach, with structural elements of a central habitat arriving from Earth conventionally, while an additive manufacturing (AM) process is used \textit{in-situ} to expand  the  central  habitat  workspace  using  locally  sourced  construction  material, namely Martian regolith soil and sand. The construction process is outlined, with the advantages  of  our  approach  elucidated  in  terms  of  flexibility,  achievability  and  the ability  to  provide  important  protection  to  surface  assets  and  explorers  from  the Martian radiation and thermal environment.
 

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