I. Executive Summary.. 3
II. Background.. 4
Business philosophy. 4
Company Goals. 4
III. Project structure.. 5
Research Labs. 5
Mining lab. 5
Production lab. 6
Life support lab. 6
Holistic Design Studio. 7
Visitor and Dual Use Facilities. 7
Lunar surface. 8
Habitat suites. 9
IV. Revenues. 10
Research facilities. 10
Economic Facts about research in relevant areas. 10
Space Tourism and Ecotourism.. 10
Economic Facts about Space Tourism and Ecotourism.. 10
V. Technology Roadmap.. 11
VI. Business Model. 12
Promotion and distribution channels. 12
Competitive advantages or disadvantages. 12
Legal Environment. 13
Why the Project will succeed. 13
Roll-out strategy. 13
Stage 0(preparation): 13
Stage 1(accessing): 13
Stage 2(operations): 13
Sales forecast. 14
VII. Status today.. 15
Mankind needs to leave Earth to live off-planet. We do know quite a bit about the conditions at different locations in space and can start learning to live off the land in space by analogues on Earth. We intend to demonstrate that a self-sufficient moonbase can be created
We will do this by creating a moonbase analogue in a terrestrial setting.
A structured breakdown of the material needs of human society will yield a structured build-up of production capacity meeting all those needs.
A demonstrator facility for on-the-moon self-sufficiency will not only be an excellent low-cost precursor for any off-earth operations, but can also serve as a visitor centre and public outreach facility promoting understanding and interest in science in general and for manufacturing industries in particular.
The Moon-ISRU consortium was created in 1994, then a joint research proposal led by Niklas Järvstråt with Literati and the Berlin Technical University. The proposal was rejected, but it was nevertheless the start for a growing consortium bent on proving the feasibility of a self-sustaining human settlement on the moon. During the years, it has become obvious that the philosophy adapted for self-sufficiency on the moon lends itself well also to other applications, such as third world aid, disaster relief, resource lean supply chain management and of course any other human space exploration activities.
The aim of the Moon-Mine project is to demonstrate that small scale self-sufficiency is possible in the conditions at the lunar surface. For this purpose, a demonstrator facility will be set up in one or several suitable facilities. The knowledge gained from research performed here will not only facilitate future human colonisation of the moon and other locations off-Earth, but can also be used in third world aid, in holistic resource optimisation for manufacturing chains and for establishing infrastructure in remote and isolated locations.
Together with the research aim, the facilities will also be excellently suited for education and promotion of manufacturing industry, manned spaceflight, and science in general. The aim is to occasionally open the facility for interested guests, who will be able to participate in the research and maybe also through living in the “moonbase” and commenting on its functionality and cosiness.
· State of the art research facilities
· Unique combination of multi-disciplinary research skills
· Showcase for Industry technology (member industries)
· Visitor technology centre with unique space and environment focus
· Popular destination for school excursions from pre-school to university
The project will be divided in a set of activities, much in the same way as the survival of a human community can be described by a process map. We thus chose to organise the project in four research centres and three visitor and support functions. The research labs are organised as the three main process groups defined for self-sufficiency, i.e. a Mining Lab, a Production Lab, and a Life Support lab, complemented by a Holistic Design Studio, catering not only for the habitation module of the community, but also for the feel of all common and profession areas. The research labs will be supported by facilities for Infrastructure, Education, and Management.
Habitat Suites catering for selected visitors will provide important feedback to the Holistic Design Studio, and a simulated Lunar Surface area will be created for both scientific and educational/recreational use.
As demonstration of material retrieval and beneficiation, a mining operation using easily manufacturable rock-breaking equipment will extract “ore” from the appropriate rock faces.
Iron ore, selected to be similar to ore believed readily available on the moon will then be transformed into iron and steel through low-equipment methods employing electric power for heating.
Later, the metal will be drawn to wire for use in welding, and/or other shapes as required in the production lab.
Mining and dressing with minimal equipment
Equipment needed: Rock drill and other rock breaking tools, possibly dynamite or other explosives. Ore beneficiation and processing equipment, shirt-sleeve environment for processing and beneficiation. Exposed bedrock of igneous type (there are no sedimentary rocks on the moon), preferably rich in iron ore, into which the mining operation can proceed.
The production lab will be demonstrating low-equipment manufacturing methods, such as free-form casting using metal wire and welding equipment, along with a range of conventional manufacture and crafting tools in a versatile workshop that will approach capacity for manufacturing virtually any tool or piece of equipment needed in the Moon-Mine.
Low volume production of metal objects (metal construction with welding)
Equipment and space needed: Fully robotised welding equipment, fully stocked manual workshop including versatile power tools and equipment as necessary for production. Portable 3D printer for large concrete structures and items.
Human life support, i.e. breathing, eating and drinking, will be provided through a fully equipped restaurant kitchen, using raw materials produced in the ecological aquaponic life support system (EALSS). The EALSS includes agricultural areas and fish tanks with vegetarian fish, which will be run as a system with careful monitoring and control of material flows in and out of the system. Connecting humans to the system will at least initially not be done in a closed-loop fashion, but rather through using precise amounts of carbon-dioxide rich air, bodily wastes and other organic waste products from the Moon-Mine as input and providing measured quantities of oxygenated air, clean water and vegetarian and fish food as output.
Energy production on the moon will mainly be simulated by periodically restricting the available power from the electric grid, though demonstrators of photovoltaic cells produced in the mine and placed e.g. on rooftops of the surface buildings will be providing electricity, and fibre transmitted solar light will be increasingly used for plant growth.
Climate control, including moisture and temperature regulation, is an important aspect, and will be studied in a two-layer system. An outer system shell will contain the moon-mine facilities, ensuring an environment with as little flux in and out as feasible, correcting in particular for moisture entering with visitors and staff, but long term capacity will also be extended to allow simulations of pressure drops and other emergency situations. An inner system will be used for keeping the moon-mine comfortable under the realistic restrictions imposed. As far as possible, homeostasis, i.e. passively stable conditions will be applied, though active sensors and regulators will certainly also be required for simulated leakage and pressure drop detection.
Transfer of sunlight in fibreglass, for cultivation.
Cultivation in fibre-transferred daylight and/or fluorescent light.
Equipment and space needed: Restaurant kitchen, soil and cultivation equipment, fish tanks, (de-)humidifiers, heating and/or cooling, moisture monitoring and control equipment.
Design studios as workplace for designers trying out design ideas for improving the ”feel” of the Moon-Mine habitat, keeping first in mind the needs of the lunar settler: an open-air impression with nature and parkland connected to cozy living quarters and functional workplaces. Naturally, it is also necessary to keep a ”futuristic” look, appealing to space colonisation interested visitors.
"Outdoor design” of galleries to provide a feeling of space, openings and the natural world.
Equipment and space needed: Computers, mock-up materials, large and small conference rooms and offices..
Ventilation, heating and sanitary system will be installed in the facility, keeping a closed circuit ecological approach. Fresh water supply will be needed until the recycling system reaches sufficient quality to meet sanitary and health requirements.
A “lunar surface” environment will be created with artificially cratered regolith floor and planetarium-like starry sky projected in the mine cavern ceiling. The Lunar Surface will have dual use, with scientific surface operation experiments sharing the area with more light-hearted ”explore and investigate” educational and touristic activities.
An important aspect of the research being done and the project as such is to create an interest in space, science and technology; and in particular the possibilities and limitations of human space habitation. Thus, the research and conference facilities will invariably double for teaching and lectures.
A visitor centre focussing on travels to the moon will be created, catering for a younger audience with exhibitions and a science activity centre themed “Professor Calculus’ lab”.
Rooms or apartments with good standard and conference facilities will provide guests with the expected comforts while they contribute to habitat research through evaluating in-system manufacturable solutions to everyday needs, participating in research and providing feedback and comments on the holistic design and feel of the moon-mine as a place to live. These rooms will be continually remodelled using increasing amounts of in-house produced furniture and equipment, and redesigned for reducing or eliminating any claustrophobic feelings of living underground.
Equipment and space needed: ” Appartment furnishing” including furniture and textiles, lobby/dining room furnishing including cutlery, separation walls and windows facing “outwards” to the moon surface and “inwards” to the life support growing areas.
The Moon-Mine project is organised in two main sections, visitor centre and synergic research institute, both catering for research and popularisation of technology and space development.
Marketing sales and executive functions.
The goal of demonstrating a fully self-sufficient community will be pursued using a backwards defined roadmap, branching out from this desired state into process elements essentially available off-the-shelf today. The research will be organised in the research labs as described above, but naturally, an increasing integration of the entire system will be pursued to achieve the fully integrated system necessary.