In this artist's rendering, a 3D printing robot pours layer after layer of hardened lunar dirt and dust onto an inflatable dome shell, 3D printing a lunar base.
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Lunar Base With Linked Domes
Credit: ESA/Foster + Partners
The possible lunar base designed by Foster + Partners would have room enough for four moon residents at a time.
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Lunar Base With Earthrise
Credit: ESA/Foster + Partners
Artist's concept of a lunar base constructed with the aid of 3D printers.
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Monolite D-Shape Printer for ESA's Lunar Base
ESA and partners used this 3D printer to print a piece of the possible lunar home.
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NASA Chief: Moon Base Must Precede Mars Mission
Spacesuit engineer Dustin Gohmert simulates work in a crater of Johnson Space Center's Lunar Yard, while his ride, NASA's new lunar truck prototype, stands…Read More »
ready in the background. The rover has the ability to lower itself all the way to the ground, making climbing on and off easy -- even in a bulky spacesuit. Less «
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Private Moon Bases Planned
Credit: Bigelow Aerospace
Space entrepreneur Robert Bigelow (left) discusses layout plans of the company's lunar base with Eric Haakonstad, one of the Bigelow Aerospace lead engineers.
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Credit: Bigelow Aerospace
Bigelow Aerospace engineers see an instant moon base by using a cluster of expandable modules that are piloted to the moon's surface.
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Lunar Observatories: Grand Plans vs. Clear Problems
This illustration shows in-space robots assembling a large structure.
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Lunar Extraction Minerals Ice Moon Base
Pit stop, the moon! Lunar extraction of minerals and ice are envisioned as near-term objectives for space mining advocates.
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Tackling Moondust for Future Lunar Living
An artist's illustration of NASA's Altair Lander on the moon, which formed part of the now-cancelled Constellation program for lunar exploration.
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Mosaic of the Lunar South Pole
The European Space Agency and a consortium of industry professionals investigated the feasibility of using 3D printing to build a lunar base.
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1.5 Metric Ton Building Block
This 2,205 pound (1,000 kilograms)test-print is made from simulated lunar dirt and resembles a cross section of what the lunar home could look like.
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3-D Printing Device Could Build Moon Base from Lunar Dust
This 6-foot-tall (2 meter) gazebo was built with D-shape 3-D printing technology. The monolithic sandstone structure was made of about 200 thin layers…Read More »
and is shown unfinished (left) and after a week of finishing by hand. It was designed to look like a micro-organism called Radiolaria. The structure in the background, overhead, is the printing device. Less «
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Packing for the Moon: New Software Aims to Track Supplies
Credit: MIT Space Logistics Program
This graphic shows a series of destination nodes within an interplanetary supply chain.
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Photos Inspire Dreams of Underground Moon Exploration
Credit: NASA/ LROC/ ASU
This pit in the Moon's Marius Hills is big enough to fit the White House completely inside and was photographed by NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter.
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Hole in the Moon Could Shelter Colonists
Credit: ISAS/JAXA/SELENE/Junichi Haruyama et al.
This apparent hole in the moon is like a skylight, a vertical cave 213 feet (65 meters) across and some 262 to 289 feet deep (80-88 meters). It is thought…Read More »
to be a collapsed lava tube. The inset shows close-up of the boxed area. Less «
Moon's Magnetic Umbrella Seen as Safe Haven for Explorers
This 3D anaglyph image shows the Reiner Gamma Formation, a totally flat area consisting of much brighter material than the surrounding dark mare. The image…Read More »
is centered on an area located at 57.8° West, 8.1° North, in the Oceanus Procellarum on the near (visible) side of the Moon, and has an extension of approximately 30 by 60 kilometres. Credits: ESA/Space-X (Space Exploration Institute) Less «
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Return to the Moon: Mending Fences Between Exploration and Science
Moon Base would be built in increments over time, leading to permanent housing on the lunar surface for expeditionary teams. This drawing depicts a notional view of such an outpost. Image
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NASA Plans Bigger Moon Base, Sporty Rovers for Future Missions
This image is a one of several conceptual visions of a pressurized rover for future moon explores under NASA's revised lunar plan and may not represent the final design.
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NASA Weighs U.S. Strategy for Moon Exploration
Credit: Lockheed Martin Corp.
NASA’s 21st century return to the Moon will make use of Orion, the space agency’s Crew Exploration Vehicle. Shown here is Orion docked with a lunar lander…Read More »
Scientists and engineers demonstrate the outpost-sized hydrogen reduction process that could produce oxygen from lunar soil.
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Moon Base Baseball? Why Not!
What would it look like if lunar astronauts got their game on? Just for fun, let's drop down and see. Yes, we'll probably take our cultural pastimes with…Read More »
us...though we do worry about cracked helmet Less «
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Inflatable Moon Base Prototype Heads to South Pole
An inflatable prototype for a lunar habitat, on display at ILC Dover's Delaware facility.
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Miriam Kramer joined Space.com as a staff writer in December 2012. Since then, she has floated in weightlessness on a zero-gravity flight, felt the pull of 4-Gs in a trainer aircraft and watched rockets soar into space from Florida and Virginia. She also serves as Space.com's lead space entertainment reporter, and enjoys all aspects of space news, astronomy and commercial spaceflight.
Miriam has also presented space stories during live interviews with Fox News and other TV and radio outlets. She originally hails from Knoxville, Tennessee where she and her family would take trips to dark spots on the outskirts of town to watch meteor showers every year. She loves to travel and one day hopes to see the northern lights in person. You can follow Miriam on Twitter and Google+.