Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
Mars NASA Build

Mars Base Design Competition Open To Non-Scientific Professionals 94

An anonymous reader writes "MakerBot, in collaboration with NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), is hosting a competition for the design of a future Mars base. The competition is open to any Thingiverse account holder regardless of professional or educational background. Winners will be chosen by a subjective panel of JPL and MakerBot employees based on scientific feasibility, creativity, and printability. Contest ends June 12, and contestants have to be at least 13 years old. The first place winner will receive a MakerBot Replicator 2 Desktop 3D printer and three spools of MakerBot Filament. The second place winner will receive two spools, and the third place winner will receive one spool. All three will have their design featured on Thingiverse." You can also browse the entries so far.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Mars Base Design Competition Open To Non-Scientific Professionals

Comments Filter:
  • Re:How about... (Score:5, Informative)

    by CRCulver ( 715279 ) <> on Sunday June 08, 2014 @08:53AM (#47189827) Homepage

    Why not just find a big enough cave or a system of caves which all you would need to do is seal the entrance with a steel door so the cave can be pressurized and oxygen to be flooded in.

    In his trilogy beginning with Red Mars [] , Kim Stanley Robinson had the colonists struggling with the infiltration of ultrafine particles of dust even in sealed plastic habitats. The Martian regolith may be harmful to human lungs. The same fear is held about lunar regolith []. Initial habitats will have to be well-sealed from the local environment before further studies can be done.

  • Why not underground? (Score:5, Informative)

    by ArcadeMan ( 2766669 ) on Sunday June 08, 2014 @10:42AM (#47190129)

    Since Mars has no atmosphere, wouldn't living on Mars require shielding against micrometeorites? What about radiation?

    Why build something above the ground? Make an underground city and you gain "free" extra-thick shielding and you also get real radiation shielding at the same time.

  • by frank249 ( 100528 ) on Sunday June 08, 2014 @12:15PM (#47190421)

    Underground habitats are required not only due to the radiation threat but also due to the cold temperatures. The average temperature is -55C. Surface temperatures may reach a high of about 20 C (293 K; 68 F) at noon, at the equator, and a low of about 153 C (120 K; 243 F) at the poles. Actual temperature measurements at the Viking landers' site range from 17.2 C (256.0 K; 1.0 F) to 107 C (166 K; 161 F). The warmest soil temperature on the Mars surface estimated by the Viking Orbiter was 27 C (300 K; 81 F).

    Images from the Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) aboard NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter have revealed seven possible cave entrances on the flanks of the volcano Arsia Mons. The caves, named after loved ones of their discoverers, are collectively known as the "seven sisters." Cave entrances measure from 100 m to 252 m wide and they are believed to be at least 73 m to 96 m deep. Because light does not reach the floor of most of the caves, it is possible that they extend much deeper than these lower estimates and widen below the surface. "Dena" is the only exception; its floor is visible and was measured to be 130 m deep. The interiors of these caverns may be protected from micrometeoroids, UV radiation, solar flares and high energy particles that bombard the planet's surface.

Money can't buy love, but it improves your bargaining position. -- Christopher Marlowe