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The challenge of constraining mass for planetary constructionThe challenges facing the designers of planetary construction machinery, construction methods, and indigenous construction materials are examined. Machinery and methods are studied from the perspective of mass and power constraints, and indigenous material use is viewed from a technical and mass-benefit vantage point. It is argued that the value of an object on the lunar surface is inexorably linked to its mass due to the high cost of space transportation. Payload capabilities and delivery costs for selected U.S. launch vehicles are given in tabular form. Power vs mass for selected construction vehicles and lunar surface hardware is illustrated. It is concluded that construction materials must be evaluated on their mass-cost of production vs the mass of equal materials delivered direct. Machinery must be designed to be both mass and power efficient, with a premium on performance per unit of mass and power.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Connolly, John F.
(NASA Johnson Space Center Houston, TX, United States)
Date Acquired
August 16, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1992
Publication Information
Publication: In: Engineering, construction, and operations in space - III: Space '92; Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference, Denver, CO, May 31-June 4, 1992. Vol. 1 (A93-41976 17-12)
Subject Category
Ground Support Systems And Facilities (Space)
Accession Number
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