Antarctic Testbed for Extraterrestrial Operation and Technology

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by Larry Bell, Univ of Houston, United States,
Deborah J. Neubek, Univ of Houston, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Engineering, Construction, and Operations in Space II

Abstract: A remote and harsh environment, Antarctica has areas which are more similar to the Moon and Mars than anywhere else on Earth. The physical similarities, coupled with strong parallels between the general nature of crew activities, functional requirements and operational constraints on antarctic stations and prospective lunar/planetary bases offer instructive comparisons. These include operations and logistics; facility planning, design and construction; utility system selection and design; and development of automatic and telerobotic systems. The Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture (SICSA) is planning an international research and technology demonstration facility in Antarctica to take advantage of these many analog opportunities. The Antarctic Planetary Testbed (APT) program will provide a basis for new insights into planning for Moon and/or Mars missions.

Subject Headings: Space exploration | Building design | Lunar materials | Moon | Material tests | Coupling | Mars | Antarctica

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