This is our Moon-Camp “CEMA”. We thought about setting it up at the South Pole, near the Shackleton crater (4 km deep, 20 km diameter).
The camp consists of single, hemispherical modules and is therefore constantly expandable and flexible. Should any damage occur in one of the modules (e.g. crack in the wall causing loss of oxygen), it can be sealed off from the others by closing the transitions and repaired without damaging them. Thanks to its hemispherical shape, Moon Camp can be covered with moondust, so there is no need to drill holes to protect it from radiation. Drilling would be very costly, as you would have to bring the large, heavy drilling machines to the Moon. This makes our Moon Camp relatively feasible.
Our Moon Camp “CEMA” is provisionally designed for two astronauts. In this sense there are two private rooms and also the remaining capacities are suitable for this number of persons. However, due to the flexibility of our Moon Camp, this is constantly expandable and can thus be made habitable for more people.
Our Moon Camp is only a model of the later camp, therefore the relations between the single modules, the objects and especially the Shackleton crater are not correct.
Where do you want to build your Moon Camp?Shackleton crater
Why did you choose this location?
Stationing near Shackleton Crater would ensure a constant water supply for the camp, since the ice in the crater can be melted and used at any time. Power generation by the photovoltaic system will be assured due to sufficient sunlight during the light phase, which is particularly long at the South Pole. Also, the temperatures there are not too extreme compared to other places. Furthermore from this position a relatively good radio contact to the earth can be established, because astronomical radio waves could work at that place in usable frequencies, that´s why we have an antennta on the roof.
How do you plan to build your Mooncamp? Which materials will you use?
First delivery: the larger, heavier components (oxygen-splitting-machine, rover, solar-cells, etc.) will be placed in the proper locations by machine.
Second delivery: a flying-robot and the “folded” Moon-Camp comprising a metal framework covered with a thin layer of aluminum. It is dropped from the spacecraft to the surface, where it is inflated from the inside and the smaller modules bulge out from the large one (command center). The flying robot scoops moondust into itself and distributes it on the camp to make it radiation-safe.
Final delivery: furnishings and the humans, who then set up the moon camp partly with machine support
The water supply of our Moon Camp will take place with the help of the Shackleton crater. We want to be able to melt and filter the ice directly at the crater and use it for the sanitary facilities of our Moon Camp, the water supply for the astronauts, as well as for the irrigation of our hydroponics system. The water can be filtered and reused over and over again. For example, the astronauts’ urine is passed through a filter system and thus recycled into drinking water
Our Moon Camp has a hydroponics facility where the astronauts can grow some of their own food, which they eat in the kitchen. In parallel, freeze-dried dishes will be brought in and prepared in the kitchen. In addition, the astronauts are regularly supplied with food from Earth.
Since our Moon Camp is located at the South Pole, it receives sunlight about 95% of the time. For this reason, we have placed many solar-panels around our camp to convert the sun’s energy. The photovoltaic system will be our main source of energy.
Fuel cells, which make oxygen and hydrogen react to form water and are also present in our Moon camp, are also used to generate energy. The process is called electrochemical reaction.
The electrical energy is then collected in our large energy storage unit (battery), from which it can be used at any time, even at night.
The moon is covered by a layer of regolith, which consists mainly of oxygen (43%) in combination with iron, magnesium, calcium or silicon. When the lunar dust is heated, the oxygen is released from the compound and our astronauts can use it to breathe. We have the oxygen-splitting-machine for that, which we can use to extract the oxygen.
The CO2 that is released during breathing can either go through a system that converts it back to oxygen (O2) that the Austronauts can then breathe back in, or it can go directly into the hydroponic system where it feeds the plants.
On the moon, cosmic radiation is much higher than on Earth because there is almost no atmosphere and no magnetic field on the moon to deflect the radiation. The high-energy particles, which fly through space at almost the speed of light, can cause considerable damage to human cells.
To protect ourselves from cosmic radiation, we cover our moon camp with lunar soil, which has a shielding effect. The remains of the lunar rock, from which the oxygen has been dissolved out, can also be used for this purpose.
In addition, the astronauts could wear radiation protection vests.
Describe a day on the Moon for one of your Moon Camp astronauts
From the perspective of astronaut Julia.
At about 8 a.m. that day in our Moon Camp, I awoke and loosened my seat belts that kept me safely in bed overnight.
When I got up, I noticed that Tobias, my astronaut colleague here on the moon station, was already awake and communicating with his family in the command center. After a quick greeting, we headed to the greenhouse together to harvest some vegetables from our hydroponic system for breakfast (9:30 a.m.).
This day started off right after a quick wash followed by a workout in the gym. (11:00 a.m.).
I put on my spacesuit and radiation vest and left the station. I was scheduled for a tour of our power-driven rover today to take certain measurements and collect samples for later study.
I started the rover and drove off over the bumpy lunar soil.
Tobias would hold the fort on the station today.
After a few kilometers, I collected a few suitable lunar chunks and started taking measurements (12:30 a.m.).
After about two hours, I returned to the station and we had lunch together (2:00 p.m.).
Then we went to the command center and analyzed the samples, wrote a protocol and communicated about our results with Earth (until 5:00 p.m.). To stay fit, we went to the gym again and worked our butts off (7:00 p.m.).
After dinner and an evening check of the station, I fell into bed and immersed myself in my e-book reader (9:00 p.m.).