“With launch costs on the order of $10k per kg of payload, it is not feasible to use terrestrial cements in extraterrestrial construction. This project will develop and characterize infrastructure materials based on available lunar resources,” Thomas stated. Thomas is collaborating with researchers from Penn State on this undertaking. “We will use simulated lunar regolith to produce a geopolymer concrete–both in the terrestrial laboratory and on the International Space Station’s microgravity platform–and study its microstructure and micromechanical properties,” Thomas stated.
As a result of shortage of supplies and measurement constraints, Thomas and his staff will examine these supplies on the microscopic degree. Characterizing the composition, construction, and mechanics of lunar concrete at this scale ought to give them helpful clues about the way it will carry out on the structural scale within the complicated lunar setting.
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