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#301 2021-04-25 05:06:41

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 7,087

Re: Settlement design

Hi Noah,

You might find these links helpful:

1. Potential Starship landing sites on Mars (based on JPL recommendations to Space X).

https://behindtheblack.com/behind-the-b … s-on-mars/

2. A wealth of info to be found in this run-down of a NASA workshop on human landing sites:

https://www.nasa.gov/feature/mars-human … entations/

Noah wrote:

Thanks Louis and Oldfahrt1939 for your comments.
Thanks RobertDyck and SpaceNut for the sources and informations, looks quite useful.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#302 2021-04-25 09:07:33

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 23,851

Re: Settlement design

The majority of the Nasa links on its page are related to the science and not so much about the resources and building once a site is selected.

StarshipMarsLanding01.png

We seen again that what appears to be flat and not full of boulders and rocks from other landing sites that the rovers have landed in so it would be good to see a Nasa landing scout sent before we actually go....

NASA's former Mars leader says the agency is 'keeping their eye' on a crewed mission to the Red Planet

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#303 2021-04-25 11:48:46

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 8,029

Re: Settlement design

This is for Noah ... a topic can easily move away from its purpose.

Something like that is at risk of happening, if forum members think you are talking about an expedition rather than a settlement.

A group of 8 people **might** establish a settlement, but I think most folks would consider a "settlement" to have a population greater than that.

Could you please clarify?  Are you thinking of creating a settlement for 8 people?

Are you thinking of an expedition.  I re-read Post #1 of this topic, and it clearly states it is intended for ** after ** initial exploration is over.

On the other hand, your intended crew of 8 should like an exploration party.

There's plenty of time, and you have an engaged audience.

Please note SpaceNut's comments in Housekeeping about lack of travel arrangements if this is an expedition.

Edit#1: If you want to set up a topic for an expedition, please check to be sure one does not already exist.

(th)

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#304 2021-04-25 12:33:17

GW Johnson
Member
From: McGregor, Texas USA
Registered: 2011-12-04
Posts: 4,690
Website

Re: Settlement design

I think this discussion suffers from relatively-undefined terms,  as well as an unclear overall goal. 

The terms "base" and "outpost" are usually associated with small numbers of people and smallish,  temporary housing for them.  The term "settlement" is usually associated with substantially-larger numbers of people,  housing for all of them,  and a sense of permanence.  In the extreme,  we are talking about cities.

Using those definitions,  "settlement" is NOT what you do in the initial landing or landings on Mars (or the moon,  or anywhere else).  WRONG GOAL!!!  You are very far from being ready to do that!  You do NOT yet really know "for sure" how to "live off the land".  That appropriate-goal lesson is centuries old,  even here on Earth.  Read your history.

What you do initially is establish a "base" or "outpost" with a small crew,  quite probably more than one of them,  and try out the techniques and hardware (brought from home) that might possibly enable you to "live off the land". 

A lot of those things are just NOT going to work the way you anticipated,  if at all,  and for a variety of reasons!  These include ground truth about resources being divergent from your remote sensing assessments,  as well as local conditions different from what you tested back home.  Which is why you MUST plan to supply these "bases" or "outposts" from home,  on the assumption that your "live off the land" technologies will prove unsuccessful. 

Not doing this the right way in the right sequence is why the Roanoke colony failed,  and why Jamestown nearly failed.  And if you do not get this right on Mars (or the moon,  or anywhere else),  you WILL kill a crew!  Or two.  Or more. 

Not all these "outposts" or "bases" are going to be successful!  Most of them will likely be abandoned for better sites,  using better stuff.  Maybe all of them.  You REALLY need to face up to that very high probability!  Which is another reason why "settlement" is the wrong goal for the initial landing.  ABSOLUTELY the wrong goal!

None of these "outposts" or "bases" actually need to succeed,  as long as you identify (1) where the useful resources really are located,  (2) how to successfully obtain them,  and (3) how best to use them to "live off the land".  That requires exploration of other sites besides the outposts you establish,  with those explorations most likely based out of those outposts.  You WILL need long distance transportation of some kind!  And some sort of mobile habitat to travel along with it,  whether part of that transportation or not. 

Once you have figured out (1) actually how to "live off the land",  (2) what you actually need to accomplish that,  and (3) the best site or sites to do it,  then (and ONLY then !!!) are you ready to create a (permanent) settlement (or settlements plural).  I say "plural",  because it is unwise in the extreme to put all your eggs in one basket.  Again,  read your history to find out why this is a truism.  Then learn from it.

Once you have reached the phase where a settlement can be established successfully (by actually knowing "for sure" how and where to "live off the land"),  then you no longer need to plan on supplying it basic life support from Earth.  But you had better plan on shipping critical materials and technologies from home for some time to come!  It may take decades to centuries before the infrastructure can be established to produce those things locally.  Steel,  concrete-equivalents,  etc,  come to mind.  Lots more.

Such is the history of colonizations,  going back centuries,  here on Earth.  Read it and learn from it.  So few do.

GW


GW Johnson
McGregor,  Texas

"There is nothing as expensive as a dead crew,  especially one dead from a bad management decision"

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#305 2021-04-25 12:44:41

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 23,851

Re: Settlement design

Its also the difference between going now with what you have for ships and payload capability and waiting until you have a more capable means of getting the payload you want in that ship thats not yet even on the drawing boards.

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#306 2021-04-25 13:13:02

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 8,029

Re: Settlement design

For GW Johnson re #304

Offline, I've been trying to suggest to Noah that he seek out a PhD level advisor to plan his academic path, depending upon where he would like to be in 10 years.

You've shown an Interest in Noah's little project that I could only have dreamed about when I was his age! 

At this point, it is unclear to me (and perhaps all of us) whether Noah is interested in leading an expedition, or advising someone else about what a settlement might look like.

At this point Noah is still working on his undergraduate degree, so there is plenty of time for him to chart an academic course that would lead to an outcome he might wish to pursue.

***
For SpaceNut re #305

There is a third alternative you've not mentioned in the post ...

The choices you've offered are: Use what exists, or wait until someone else does something.

The third alternative is to decide what is needed, and proceed to make ** that ** happen.

We've talked about this before in other topics...

A job ** holder ** will do what is requested in return for monetary compensation (or sometimes for in kind compensation (ie, interns))

A job ** creator ** will hire job holders to perform duties in support of a vision that the job ** creator ** has for a given outcome.

In the case of a business, the outcome of interest is an enterprise that turns a profit year after year, and grows over time.

In the case of an expedition, the outcome of interest is achieving the knowledge gains desired, while bringing everyone home safely.

Lewis and Clark led an expedition to explore the American West (of the Mississippi River) for Thomas Jefferson.  They most definitely achieved the knowledge objective (and then some) while losing only one expedition member to natural causes (because the medical capability of the time was inadequate).

In light of the contribution of GW Johnson above, I'm looking forward to seeing how Noah handles the feedback he is receiving from the group.

(th)

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#307 2021-04-25 13:17:00

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 7,087

Re: Settlement design

You are underestimating how much NASA/JPL know about Mars. It is in my view extremely unlikely that they will have read the ground conditions wrong for those proposed landing sites. They will have water ice available a few metres at most below the surface. I forget the technical term but basically near those landing sites are hillocks which are regolith over mounds of ice. You can dig through 2-6 metres of regolith and get to very pure ice. The landing sites themselves are firm rock platforms with low dust levels/boulder concentration.

Once a base is established with sufficient water resources and good landing sites, there will be every incentive to return to that location with each new mission because:

(a) That is where there will be functioning habs and functioning energy system

(b) That location will be a known quantity.

(c) There will be Starships there that can be cannibalised for steel, rocket parts and residual fuel.

As the base grows into  settlement e.g. with an increasing number of farm habs, a university research unit, leisure coimplex, health facilities and so on, then it becomes even more natural to go to that location and that is where workers and researchers will be needed.

That's not to say it is guaranteed to remain the principal settlement but it has a very good chance of becoming that.

Exploration will of course take place and I can imagine scenarios where things might develop otherwise e.g. if a concentrated source of methane were discovered or a rich location for evidence of life on Mars is found.

I've checked out the Arcadia-Amazonis border before and it seems a good location all round. Other resources like iron ore and basalt are not too far away.

It's much more likely in my view that we will see the tiny base grow and grow into a real city - maybe not the million person city of Musk's dreams but a very sizeable settlement.

Of course that's not to deny other settlements will grow up around  a range of resource centres e.g. if we find a good source of carbon or calcium carbonate somewhere, there will be a mining settlement there. Tourism will also be a factor. I am sure there will be a settlement close to Olympus Mons and another at Valles Marineris for instance. Once a network of roadways is established, they will be natural locations for hotels or rover parks (maybe you won't book into a room but just park your pressurised rover in pressurised "hangar" but there will be rest facilities within the "hotel" that you might make use of.

You write:

It may take decades to centuries before the infrastructure can be established to produce those things locally.  Steel,  concrete-equivalents,  etc,  come to mind. 

I think that is too pessimistic.  This will be a new type of colonisation benefitting from things that no previous colonists have enjoyed e.g.
3D printers, CNC lathes, industrial robots, automated production, fetch and carry robots, farm robots, mining robots. Remember as well that this is a virgin planet, as far as we know, and most required resources can be found at the surface. Many elements of something like robotised farming are already in place. Robots are used on farms all over the world for planting, harvesting,  crop feed and checking on plant health .

Some ISRU processes such as glass making and steel production could easily be under way within a decade. PV panel production could be established within a decade but will likely be dependent on some imports initially. Within 50 years the Mars settlement may be genuinely capable of self-sufficiency although it is unlikely to seek to achieve that 100%.

The rate of progress will depend to a great extent on how far scaled down factory processes can be made to work well. On Mars "small will be beautiful."


GW Johnson wrote:

I think this discussion suffers from relatively-undefined terms,  as well as an unclear overall goal. 

The terms "base" and "outpost" are usually associated with small numbers of people and smallish,  temporary housing for them.  The term "settlement" is usually associated with substantially-larger numbers of people,  housing for all of them,  and a sense of permanence.  In the extreme,  we are talking about cities.

Using those definitions,  "settlement" is NOT what you do in the initial landing or landings on Mars (or the moon,  or anywhere else).  WRONG GOAL!!!  You are very far from being ready to do that!  You do NOT yet really know "for sure" how to "live off the land".  That appropriate-goal lesson is centuries old,  even here on Earth.  Read your history.

What you do initially is establish a "base" or "outpost" with a small crew,  quite probably more than one of them,  and try out the techniques and hardware (brought from home) that might possibly enable you to "live off the land". 

A lot of those things are just NOT going to work the way you anticipated,  if at all,  and for a variety of reasons!  These include ground truth about resources being divergent from your remote sensing assessments,  as well as local conditions different from what you tested back home.  Which is why you MUST plan to supply these "bases" or "outposts" from home,  on the assumption that your "live off the land" technologies will prove unsuccessful. 

Not doing this the right way in the right sequence is why the Roanoke colony failed,  and why Jamestown nearly failed.  And if you do not get this right on Mars (or the moon,  or anywhere else),  you WILL kill a crew!  Or two.  Or more. 

Not all these "outposts" or "bases" are going to be successful!  Most of them will likely be abandoned for better sites,  using better stuff.  Maybe all of them.  You REALLY need to face up to that very high probability!  Which is another reason why "settlement" is the wrong goal for the initial landing.  ABSOLUTELY the wrong goal!

None of these "outposts" or "bases" actually need to succeed,  as long as you identify (1) where the useful resources really are located,  (2) how to successfully obtain them,  and (3) how best to use them to "live off the land".  That requires exploration of other sites besides the outposts you establish,  with those explorations most likely based out of those outposts.  You WILL need long distance transportation of some kind!  And some sort of mobile habitat to travel along with it,  whether part of that transportation or not. 

Once you have figured out (1) actually how to "live off the land",  (2) what you actually need to accomplish that,  and (3) the best site or sites to do it,  then (and ONLY then !!!) are you ready to create a (permanent) settlement (or settlements plural).  I say "plural",  because it is unwise in the extreme to put all your eggs in one basket.  Again,  read your history to find out why this is a truism.  Then learn from it.

Once you have reached the phase where a settlement can be established successfully (by actually knowing "for sure" how and where to "live off the land"),  then you no longer need to plan on supplying it basic life support from Earth.  But you had better plan on shipping critical materials and technologies from home for some time to come!  It may take decades to centuries before the infrastructure can be established to produce those things locally.  Steel,  concrete-equivalents,  etc,  come to mind.  Lots more.

Such is the history of colonizations,  going back centuries,  here on Earth.  Read it and learn from it.  So few do.

GW


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#308 2021-04-25 15:28:12

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 23,851

Re: Settlement design

tahanson43206 wrote:

The third alternative is to decide what is needed, and proceed to make ** that ** happen.

This is what Zubrin's decades and unless you have deep pockets you are not getting any further than waiting.

Nasa Has their plan but its government expensive and is contractor delayed.

Space x Elon has pockets but he has yet to buy or hire the knowledge that will get further.

Currently Nasa has given funding to Space x to produce with assistance but if they balk at any suggestions for what is and will be needed its deal off just as the Red Dragon mission happened.

Job creators exist for many of the proprietary items to come from with granted license from there owners to provide to the buyer but its not a one stop shop that is building the systems of rockets and support that will bring us to Mars.

The plan needs to be broken up into the 3 legs of a mission to mars so as to off load the all in one shot approach that makes it mass limited to the current rockets and even to the starships with its not yet played refueling.

https://nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov/planetary/m … sretu.html

Current capsules from all vendors can hold with some time limitations the crew of 8 which is pushing it but it can not support the mission to mars and needs more mass than it can hold.

Based on time out going leg is 7- 9 months and with an equal return time of or 120 to 180 days. Planet stay between cycles is surface stay times to a total of 600+ days.

What we still do not have with a Red Dragon design is sufficient mass to surface and a return to orbit capability.

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#309 2021-04-25 16:12:27

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 7,087

Re: Settlement design

That link is over 15 years old SpaceNut! Not sure what relevance that could possibly have.

For me the only issue now is whether Space X can safely get their Starships to orbit and to return to Earth. If they can do that on a regular basis then the Mars Mission is definitely on. I can't see much standing in their way. Life Support, suitable habs, developed rovers, solar power systems are all in place. The bone and muscle loss issue in zero G has been overcome. There are some residual space medicine issue but nothing big enough to prevent a human mission going ahead.

Finding and digging out water ice will not be a major issue.

Setting up a propellant plant and getting the return Starship ready to launch are probably the two big challenges.

Musk's available funds are huge and it looks like they are just going to get bigger and bigger as the world converts to electric vehicles and solar power.

SpaceNut wrote:
tahanson43206 wrote:

The third alternative is to decide what is needed, and proceed to make ** that ** happen.

This is what Zubrin's decades and unless you have deep pockets you are not getting any further than waiting.

Nasa Has their plan but its government expensive and is contractor delayed.

Space x Elon has pockets but he has yet to buy or hire the knowledge that will get further.

Currently Nasa has given funding to Space x to produce with assistance but if they balk at any suggestions for what is and will be needed its deal off just as the Red Dragon mission happened.

Job creators exist for many of the proprietary items to come from with granted license from there owners to provide to the buyer but its not a one stop shop that is building the systems of rockets and support that will bring us to Mars.

The plan needs to be broken up into the 3 legs of a mission to mars so as to off load the all in one shot approach that makes it mass limited to the current rockets and even to the starships with its not yet played refueling.

https://nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov/planetary/m … sretu.html

Current capsules from all vendors can hold with some time limitations the crew of 8 which is pushing it but it can not support the mission to mars and needs more mass than it can hold.

Based on time out going leg is 7- 9 months and with an equal return time of or 120 to 180 days. Planet stay between cycles is surface stay times to a total of 600+ days.

What we still do not have with a Red Dragon design is sufficient mass to surface and a return to orbit capability.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#310 2021-04-25 17:14:47

Oldfart1939
Member
Registered: 2016-11-26
Posts: 2,250

Re: Settlement design

louis wrote:

The bone and muscle loss issue in zero G has been overcome. There are some residual space medicine issue but nothing big enough to prevent a human mission going ahead.

NOT TRUE! There are still serious consequences from prolonged time in microgravity. I worked on a research proposal regarding bone loss regulation about 12 years ago, and there was almost zero interest in my ideas for hormonal regulation of bone loss and sculpting. Only in the past 2 years or possibly 3, has there been a significant uptick in interest.

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#311 2021-04-25 17:26:44

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 7,087

Re: Settlement design

Well I can't research the whole thing again but

"Drugs that prevent bone turnover (loss) have been shown to successfully prevent bone atrophy in both astronauts and animal models in space. "

https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/stat … rogravity/

At the same time exercise and pressure-exercise trousers stop muscle wastage.

My understanding is that the wastage for bone and muscle has been coming down for years now and for average stays on the ISS is now at zero. I think some people even gain because of the exercise regimes!

There is a genetic factor in all this - some people are far more susceptible to bone or muscle loss than the average and they need to be screened out as part of the selection process. Whether NASA has developed effective screening as well, I don't know but I wouldn't be surprised if they had.



Oldfart1939 wrote:
louis wrote:

The bone and muscle loss issue in zero G has been overcome. There are some residual space medicine issue but nothing big enough to prevent a human mission going ahead.

NOT TRUE! There are still serious consequences from prolonged time in microgravity. I worked on a research proposal regarding bone loss regulation about 12 years ago, and there was almost zero interest in my ideas for hormonal regulation of bone loss and sculpting. Only in the past 2 years or possibly 3, has there been a significant uptick in interest.

Last edited by louis (2021-04-25 17:27:54)


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#312 2021-04-25 17:52:42

RobertDyck
Moderator
From: Winnipeg, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 6,904
Website

Re: Settlement design

There's a simple experiment that SpaceX could do right now. Demonstrate artificial gravity. I've posted this many times, but still no one in NASA or SpaceX has mentioned anything. When it's time for a Crew Dragon capsule to return, do this experiment just before returning to Earth. Connect a Crew Dragon to a cargo Dragon with a tether. This will have to be done a significant distance from ISS. After Cargo Dragon has been emptied of cargo. It could be done with Cygnus instead of Cargo Dragon, because once Cygnus is empty, it's filled with garbage, separated from ISS, and de-orbited. Cygnus burns up on re-entry and crashes in the ocean. So it's disposable. So the experiment is to connect a crew capsule to a cargo capsule with a tether, then rotate to produce centrifugal force. That force is artificial gravity. Then change orbit while rotating. Do not stop rotation to change orbit, that would defeat the point. To move in one direction within the plane of rotation, wait until one of the two spacecraft is pointed ass-end toward the direction you want to apply thrust, then use thrusters to pull on the tether. Never push on the tether, you can't push on a string. Always time thrust so you pull. Change of orbit doesn't have to be much, just enough to simulate a mid-course correction enroute to Mars. The reason for connecting a cargo ship full of garbage is in case something goes wrong. If you have to sacrifice one spacecraft to save the other, one has astronauts while the other is filled with garbage, that's a no-brainer. And both spacecraft will re-enter the atmosphere after this experiment.

This could be done with various spacecraft. Crew capsule could be Crew Dragon, Boeing Starliner, or Russian Soyuz. Cargo ship could be Cargo Dragon, Cygnus, Japanese HTV, or Russian Progress. Mix in any configuration.

This is the next logical step after Gemini 11. That connected a Gemini capsule to an Agena target vehicle, using a tether. And they spun. Spin rate was quite low, and they didn't attempt to manoeuvre while spinning. Gemini 11 was 1966, this is the next logical step.
260px-Gemini_11_Agena.jpg

The point is artificial gravity prevents medical problems. Mars Direct would connect the hab to the spent upper stage with a tether, use rotation for artificial gravity all the way to Mars. Once they reach Mars, cut the tether and let the spent upper stage fly off into space. This experiment proves that would work.

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#313 2021-04-25 18:01:46

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 7,087

Re: Settlement design

Robert, you claim:

"The point is artificial gravity prevents medical problems. "

I don't think we know that. We've never had anyone in centrifugal (or is it centripetal?) 1G as far as I know. Can't be done on Earth can it?
And hasn't been done in space yet.

Only when we've had a 6 month trial will we know what the effects are. Centrifugal force is totally artificial - it's like being thrown against a floor 24/7 and nothing to do with gravitons. So two totally different experiences.

But I think Space X have made the sensible decision not to go down that road. We know people have lived in zero G for well over a year on the ISS without any serious negative health effects and now we know how to prevent bone and muscle loss.

We don't know the effects of 0.38 G on the human body but I think we can take an educated guess it's better than 0G.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#314 2021-04-25 18:12:04

RobertDyck
Moderator
From: Winnipeg, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 6,904
Website

Re: Settlement design

Related: launch Centrifuge Accommodation Module, attach to ISS. This module was proposed by NASA but cancelled. Then it was paid by Italy and built by Japan. It sat in the building at Kennedy Space Center where ISS modules were staged waiting for launch. But it was never launched; Shuttle was cancelled without launching it. I could argue Shuttle should have launched one more mission to deliver this module, but it didn't happen. That module is currently an outdoor museum display in Tokyo. It would have to be cleaned up, probably new thermal blankets applied. It could be launched today with an Atlas V rocket. Attach the service module from a Cygnus cargo ship, with the ISS module connected where the pressurized cargo module would go. It would rendezvous with ISS just like any other Cygnus. The station's arm would grab it and berth to a CBM port just like Cygnus.

The Centrifuge is one of the primary experiments for ISS. This would test long term effects of partial gravity. It's too small for a human, but laboratory mice or guinea pigs or something like that. That's what it was designed for. This would prove that Mars level gravity will prevent health problems of zero-G.

Besides: ignoring a partner, just stiffing them on launch of their module? After they spent millions of dollars building it? That's rude!

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#315 2021-04-25 18:14:42

RobertDyck
Moderator
From: Winnipeg, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 6,904
Website

Re: Settlement design

Cross-posting. Yes, you're right louis. That's the point of the Centrifuge Accommodation Module. The capsule experiment is to prove that we can do mid-course corrections while rotating with a tether. That means heavy truss or pipe or other solid connections aren't necessary.

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#316 2021-04-26 05:31:01

Calliban
Member
From: Northern England, UK
Registered: 2019-08-18
Posts: 1,316

Re: Settlement design

An interesting article on Coober Pedy, Australia's underground town.

https://www.businessinsider.com/inside- … he-town-20

On Mars, I believe that underground living will be the norm.  It will be driven the need to escape the cold, not heat, along with cosmic rays and vacuum.  LED lighting will be mounted on ceilings to create false sky and there will be selective use of light tubes and pressure rated windows to let in natural light.

Last edited by Calliban (2021-04-26 05:33:04)


Interested in space science, engineering and technology.

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#317 2021-04-26 06:08:12

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 8,029

Re: Settlement design

For Calliban re #316

Thanks for the link to the Coober Pedy story (The name (according to Wikipedia)) means "White fells's hole" in the Aboriginal language.

The Wikipedia article has a bit more detail than the Business Insider story.  This article is ** definitely ** worth a glance by anyone serious about living on Mars.

The dearth of water is an ongoing problem in Coober Pedy, as it will be on Mars.

An interesting (to me at least) detail of the article is a picture of the inside of a cave hotel room.  There is a fabric "inverted umbrella" mounted in the ceiling to catch debris that periodically flakes from the ceiling.

I would imagine Mars residents will not have ** that ** problem, because all spaces will be pressurized to RobertDyck's recommended 1/2 Bar, and the material comprising the pressure seal will also prevent entry of wall material into the space.

I think the best bet for lighting is a highly efficient source of near Earth-solar spectum that is distributed around the underground space.

There is a series of science fiction stories (they could well have been assembled into a book) about a region of space enclosed in a wall by aliens for unknown reasons.  The space is so large that it contains hydrogen fusion simulated suns, and human life is described in remarkable detail by a very creative author.

Artificial gravity is achieved by rotating living structures.  The author provided for an atmosphere that is similar to that of the Earth, but (by now) I've forgotten how the balance of gases was maintained.  I assume plant life was abundant.

Coober Pedy does NOT have to deal with the problem of atmosphere maintenance, but in other respects it ** does ** seem to have some similarities to the kinds of underground habitats that are likely to occur on Mars.

(th)

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#318 2021-04-26 06:20:22

Noah
Member
From: Zurich (Switzerland)
Registered: 2020-07-28
Posts: 38

Re: Settlement design

CREW SIZE

From a moral point of view, the number of crew members should be kept small. But what is actually even more important than keeping the crew small is keeping the crew safe! So in order to achieve the mission objective, do science, and bring the crew back safely, there are several requirements for the crew. There are four critical factors that affect crew size:
First, there are personnel requirements, which primarily include scientific and technical skills. Second, there is the workload, which should be an interplay of productive work as well as rest breaks. Third is psychological factor. A mission that lasts over 2.5 years will bring some problems, mainly due to confinement and isolation. Fourth is the composition of the crew, should it be more homogeneous or heterogeneous (in terms of nationality, gender, age and experience).

Personnel requirements
A minimum crew for operations, maintenance, and overhead is needed, about 2 to 3 people. The mission critical person would definitely be a mechanic for the electrical systems or life support systems.  The lives of the crew would depend on his/her skills. Therefore, this person should be an experienced mechanic with hands-on skills to troubleshoot most problems. A person or rather persons with medical skills are also irreplaceable. All crew members need basic medical knowledge and are trained in first aid.
Further, a field scientist/geologist would also be needed to explore the Martian landscape to find resources for the ISRU and to understand the history of Mars. Further, a geologist would be needed to find new evidence to answer the question of past or present life.
A partial list for mission jobs might include:
Technological Skills:
Commander
Spacecraft Engineer
Manufacturing Engineer
Navigation
Communication
Software Engineering
Scientific skills:
Geology
Biology
Medicine
Atmosphere
Meteorology
Astronomy
It is not necessary to bring an expert for each field. It is not necessary to bring a "pilot" or commander. Yes, we need them, but a commander could be mainly a mechanic who has the skills to lead the crew. Redundancy is needed to make the mission as safe as possible. The mission critical people should definitely be at least dual. So the crew maximum would be all 12 skills plus redundancy in the mission critical people, which would be around 20 people.

Workload
In the 1970s, there was a "Skylab mission" where the astronauts had a tough schedule. For this reason, the crew went on strike for one day. Therefore, a good time segment is very important. 
To determine the workload, it is useful to note what work needs to be done and what should be done. All issues related to safety and life support have the highest priority, followed by exploration and science.
There have been several studies on the workload and psychological effects in a Mars-like environment such as in the Arctic/Antarctica, in low Earth orbit, in isolation chambers, and in underwater submarines.
After landing on Mars, the first month will likely be the hardest. There are three options for the building: 1. bring the whole building, 2. print the building in advance, or 3. build it on site, after landing. Regardless of which case occurs, the team will have a heavy workload. They will need to install power supplies and life support systems. If they are a larger team, they can divide the work more efficiently, but they will also have to do more work. In such a case, with a shortage of people, a larger crew at the top end (about ~ 16) is better. However, this should not happen so often, so such a large team would probably be superfluous. The team then moves into the maintenance phase, which is more repetitive but also more demanding. This would mainly involve cleaning and repairs. Coinciding with the start of science and exploration. Lamamy et al. (2005) noted that for a four-person crew, probably 80% of the crew time would be devoted to self-maintenance and about 20% of the crew time would be devoted to science and exploration. With a crew of six, this ratio would possibly change to 60-40. It should be noted that these numbers are quite subjective at this early stage.  However, with a larger crew, the ratio would allow more room for science and exploration. So with a crew of 8 or more, the crew would have plenty of time for science and would not be constantly engaged in self-maintenance.
What also needs to be considered is the schedule of how and when the crew operates. For example, the ISS crew gets a schedule from the Earth crew, and that works well. But on Mars, a response from the Earth crew would take about 40 minutes because of the long distance. Accordingly, the crew has to operate largely autonomously. This also has an impact on various other psychological factors.

Psychological factors
The aforementioned studies also collected useful data on psychological factors. They are listed in total in Table 3. I will only go through the most important points. The results were all similar: most crew members had a pleasant and harmonious time. Nevertheless, they all missed their family/friends, or unfamiliar faces and other things. One of the biggest hurdles was isolation and confinement. Constantly next to others and almost no space of their own.  They also found that larger crews have a higher rate of deviance and conflict than smaller crews. Therefore, crew size should be kept small in terms of psychological aspects. But still many psychological aspects are not well researched. For example, the earth-out-of-sight phenomenon. It is not clear how much the crew is affected by this phenomenon.
Composition
Composition is in terms of nationality, gender, age, and experience. In general, deviance and conflict increased with mission duration, with the deviance peak in the tired quarter. Dudley - Rowley investigation of teams respond in a heterogeneity or homogeneity group. Heterogeneity differentiates people from each other, this makes thinking about a long duration more interesting. However, they start with higher levels of deviance, conflict, and dysfunction - but they decrease. Perhaps this is how some innovative solutions emerge, because of the different skills and experiences. In homogeneous teams, the start was quite comfortable. After the middle to the end of the third quarter, conflicts increase sharply. Especially gender plays a role in the composition. To date, there has been no systematic research on the behavior and performance of mixed- and same-sex groups that arise under confinement and isolation. Nevertheless, there are several risks associated with sexual activity:
formation of couples
interpersonal tensions due to jealousy
sexual deprivation can be harder to bear in the presence of people perceived as sexually attractive
sexual harassment
unwanted pregnancy
Only the last risk cannot be associated with homosexuality, but the other one can. So this does not make a same-sex group more favorable. There are also some proposals to send married couples on a Mars mission, but this does not seem realistic, as high technical skills are required.

So how many should go and in what constellation?
Based on the facts, an eight-person crew consisting of a mixed & heterogeneous team seems most likely. A crew of eight allows for a dedicated crewmember for the most critical function, while still allowing for some redundancy in capability coverage and still keeping the mission feasible and affordable.
With a smaller crew, there would likely not be enough time for science and would lead the mission primarily to a survival camp. A crew with more people, say 11 or 12, would also seem reasonable. But there are two main reasons for a smaller crew: the first is to keep the payload as small as possible to allow for a realistic price. In the past, most attempts failed not because of technical problems but because of lack of funds. Second is a moral consideration: regardless of any safety precautions, this mission will be extremely risky. Therefore, the number of crew should be kept to a minimum for the first mission.


SOURCES
Mars Prospect Energy and Material Resources
Mars - Wie wir den roten Planeten besiedeln
Use of extraterrestrial resources for human space missions to moon or Mars

Last edited by Noah (2021-04-28 02:00:10)

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#319 2021-04-26 06:28:48

Noah
Member
From: Zurich (Switzerland)
Registered: 2020-07-28
Posts: 38

Re: Settlement design

GW Johnson wrote:

Using those definitions,  "settlement" is NOT what you do in the initial landing or landings on Mars (or the moon,  or anywhere else).  WRONG GOAL!!!  You are very far from being ready to do that!  You do NOT yet really know "for sure" how to "live off the land".  That appropriate-goal lesson is centuries old,  even here on Earth.  Read your history.

Thank you for your comment! I agree that the word " settlement" is misleading. I will change it in my comments.

@Thomas
Can I also change the name of the topic?
(P.s.: Thanks for your email. I have followed your tip.)

@Louis
Thanks for the links, they are helpful!

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#320 2021-04-26 06:29:32

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 8,029

Re: Settlement design

This is for Oldfart1939, and (of course) comments / suggestions by all are welcome

The observation by GW Johnson a few posts back, that the topic "Settlement Design" needs further definition, ** and ** the excursion into the side channel of expedition design, leads me to invite consideration of construction of an Expedition topic within Human Missions.

Noah tossed out the number 8 for a crew, to get things started, and Oldfart1939 came back with 17 as a better number.

I'm agnostic at this point, although I do find myself looking at the history of human exploration over past millennia for guidance. 

Would you (Oldfart1939) be interested in supporting development of an Expedtion for 17 topic?  If we had such a topic, it would provide a framework for you to develop your ideas further.  I ** think ** that discussion of expeditions is not a good fit for Settlement design, since the opening post makes clear that the topic is intended to focus upon a period of time ** after ** initial landings and exploration.

If you are interested in taking a deep dive (or even a shallow one) into Expedition design, please consider creating a topic.  If you create it you would "own" it, and be able to request that contributors stay on topic (if that is your preference).

Edit#1: For Oldfart1939 ...I asked FluxBB to show me topics you have created ... it came pack with a list that extended over three pages.

Some of the topics appear to come pretty close to what a topic about an Expedition of 17 people might look like.  I noticed in particular you created a topic for setting up a laboratory on Mars.  That seems like a reasonable thing to be thinking about.  It might well prove more cost effective than the sample return idea that NASA is currently thinking about doing.

For SpaceNut ... with your special talents for search, would you be willing to collect the topics Oldfart1939 has already created that seem close to what an Expedition for 17 people topic might look like.

(th)

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#321 2021-04-26 09:00:32

Oldfart1939
Member
Registered: 2016-11-26
Posts: 2,250

Re: Settlement design

Thomas-
I'm certainly willing to set up and **own** such a topic. I looked at what Noah has written and his thoughts are in a way, similar to mine, but from a different approach in reaching his conclusions.

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#322 2021-04-26 09:35:55

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 8,029

Re: Settlement design

For Oldfart1939 re #321

First, thank you for picking up on this suggestion/possibility/trial-balloon/flag-to-see-if-anyone-salutes !!!

Second, thank you for staying engaged ... I'm a little bit behind you in this adventure, and appreciate your example.  For one thing (of many) your list of topics created since you joined the forum is impressive, and not ONE (that I saw in a quick scan) was a clinker!

However, topics may succeed or just bob in the water depending upon the nature of the membership at the time, and what is going on in the outside world.

Noah (and possibly Captain J Torriani) represent the generation in college and potentially part of the wave of entrepreneurs and professionals who will actually be heading for Mars (or the Moon or elsewhere) or (more likely) providing the goods and services that will support the actual expedition members.

Noah is still an undergraduate, with a course load that suggests to me he has serious potential to achieve success in some field, but at this point I doubt he (or anyone) has an idea of his potential, or how well he might be able to achieve it.

You (on the other hand) have all (or a big part) of the knowledge and experience that Noah might wish to have if he were to decide to lead an expedition in 10 years (quite possible) or a company that supports such an effort (definitely possible).

The problem for Noah (and everyone is his  cohort) is how to accomplish transfer of wisdom from your generation to his.

You can help by deciding to launch an Expedition topic.

Now... we have the wisdom of GW Johnson to consider ...

In his evaluation of Noah's (quite brave) initiative to launch the Settlement Design topic, GW Johnson has provided constructive feedback to Noah.

Fortunately, the FluxBB design (weak as it is for knowledge accumulation) CAN accommodate a correction of the initial settings for a topic.

This is possible because Noah accepted the opportunity to create an entire topic, and therefore "owns" Post #1, where direction is set.

He can update the direction to fine tune it as needed, and I trust he will do that.

On the other hand, Noah has shown an interest in the expedition alternate future that is available to him.

Your initiative to launch an Expedition Topic ** at this time ** might (no guarantees of course) happen at just the right time for Noah and his friends to take as inspiration for their studies and practical exercises, such as internships with aerospace companies or potentially even with their national space agencies.

(th)

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#323 2021-04-26 11:26:20

RobertDyck
Moderator
From: Winnipeg, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 6,904
Website

Re: Settlement design

Noah wrote:

...sexual activity...

This is an area that NASA management has traditionally been obsessed. American culture is obsessed with sex, but upper class elites like to pretend they have Puritan values. NASA wanted to prohibit any sexual activity what so ever for the reasons you state. When the International Space Station was built, there were other countries involved. The European Space Agency brings European values. They are quite adamant about this: what adults do on their own time is their business. Management has no business telling adults what they can or cannot do with sex. So policy for ISS was established (at least as released to members of the public like me) that space agencies cannot dictate sexual activity or lack thereof to astronauts. They can insist that astronauts be discrete, and the emphasis is that individuals must be professionals at all times, they must be able to continue to work together. European representatives treated NASA's attitude toward sex as adolescent, not mature. As if Americans have never learned how to grow up.

One Space Shuttle mission did have a married couple on the same mission. They went into space together. Many people have speculated what happened up there. However, the crew cabin of Shuttle is actually quite small. If anything did happen, absolutely everyone on the Shuttle would have heard everything.

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#324 2021-04-26 11:37:27

tahanson43206
Moderator
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 8,029

Re: Settlement design

For Noah re #318

Your question is: can you change the topic.

No.... If you think back, I cautioned you about that.

It is ** not ** a problem.  Just create a topic for an 8 person expedition, and continue developing the Settlement topic as you started out.

Regarding #318

Can you confirm you created that document from memory without using pre-existing material?

That is a very high level of writing.

If you actually wrote that from memory, then excellent.

However, if you used references, please add them immediately.

(th)

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#325 2021-04-26 20:38:27

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 23,851

Re: Settlement design

The trouble with building and especially remotely from support trains is the issue of time, quantities of what types of payloads can be moved. It will always come back to the planned steps to achive the final goal and must start with the first step, to the next and so forth fully itemized as to what happens when.

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