Vano Gvencadze, Nina Avdalyan
The University of Georgia

Project idea

Overpopulation, resource depletion, ecosystem collapse: after due consideration, from a planet that is at breaking point, the ultimate unexplored horizon, the only untouched frontier seems outer space.
In that dark and unknown abyss, the safest shelter, the closest haven is inevitably the Moon.
Total absence of sound, silver deserts as far as the eye can see and a black horizon as dark as the darkest of Earth’s nights. It is hard to describe a place that only 12 men fleetingly and partially experienced in more than 2.5 million years (this is the estimated age of our species). As close as unreachable, our satellite is one of the most beloved and melancholic protagonists of the history of mankind.
The fact that we have grown accustomed to thinking of the satellite often prevents us from reflecting on the physical importance of its presence in the Earth’s system. In this sense, one should think of the consequences our planet would face without the moon’s mass.
Radiations, absence of atmosphere, impacts of micrometeorites and extreme temperatures make the surface of the Moon a highly inhospitable environment where the possible human infrastructures should necessarily face challenges that perhaps are too demanding. Nevertheless, numerous research and observations suggested that on the Moon there may be vast underground structures of volcanic origin known on Earth as “lava tubes”. This network of tube-shaped galleries with impressive diameters (many around 100 meters) is connected to the surface through a series of wells of different sizes. Here, frequent collapses generate natural ramps that ensure an easy access from the surface to the underlying galleries. It is exactly in one of these wells (Lacus Mortis Pit) that we designed our own lunar station.
The pit is oval shaped and the length of the major axis is about 260 m while the length of the minor axis is about 100m. Also, there is a ramp enabling access to the inside of the pit.
Regardless of its purpose, Moon Station is this: a new foundation of the human race, a gesture of conquest by a species longing for immensity. The Moon is still extraordinarily complex from a technical point of view. However, it is also true that the composition aspect, the aesthetics is given to an architecture able to represent humanity in a context which was not made for humanity . Moon Station required the design of a first-time architecture. It is an iconic place that is the symbol of the most futuristic exploration of humankind. Here, the most daring people of the planet will enjoy silver deserts and skies that have never been seen before. They will walk amid silent craters to see the light-blue globe of their distant planet in a black horizon day and night.

An important step in the exploration and colonization of the solar system is to build a permanently inhabited base on the Moon. The lunar environment is stark and hostile to unprotected humans. Structures are needed that protect the inhabitants from vacuum, radiation, extreme temperatures, dust, and meteoroids. Transporting the necessary construction materials from Earth is extremely expensive. Fortunately, lunar structures can be built utilizing indigenous materials. The locally available materials include lunar regolith, cast regolith, glass and glass composites, metals and concrete.

Project description

Within the depths of a lunar pit, a spinning lunar base of remarkable engineering stands, a testament to humanity's quest for habitation beyond Earth. Encased in an aluminum finish, its imposing 60-meter diameter structure harmoniously merges retro-futuristic aesthetics with cutting-edge technology. With the help of the integrated flywheels, the base spins around a central axis to create artificial gravity. In this case, the force that creates the artificial gravity is directed outwards from the axis of rotation, which is known as the centrifugal force.
At its core lies the greenhouse torus, fortified with lightweight aluminum alloys, titanium reinforcements, and regolith structures. Transparent boron glass panels allow curious eyes wander inside and recall the scenes of the homeland planet, while aerogel insulation protects against lunar extremes. Here, controlled hydroponic and aeroponic systems nurture oxygen-rich plants, ensuring a sustainable supply of fresh air, nutrition, and medicinal resources. This self-contained ecosystem, imbued with retro-futuristic interior design, fosters mental well-being and provides respite from the desolate lunar landscape.
Connected to the greenhouse, the main living space boasts a sleek aluminum alloy framework, complemented by titanium and regolith reinforcements. Within this space age enclave, the spinning torus creates artificial gravity, mitigating the challenges of prolonged exposure to lunar microgravity. Anchored by the principles of centrifugal force, the spinning motion generates a gravity-like sensation, enhancing occupants' comfort and physiological well-being.
The living torus encompasses three modules: sleeping quarters, a common hall, and laboratories. Lunar dust-infused flooring lines the sleeping quarters, offering a lunar aesthetic, while ergonomic sleeping pods rest upon durable materials to ensure comfort and stability. In the common hall, regolith structures and accentuated neon lighting foster a sense of community, encouraging interpersonal connections and facilitating mental respite. Laboratories, shielded by kevlar, house state-of-the-art equipment, enabling cutting-edge research and innovation within the lunar base's retro-futuristic atmosphere.
Recognizing the significance of mental health, the spinning lunar base implements a lighting system that mimics Earth's day and night cycle. With the help of an affordable fission nuclear power system, strategically placed colored lights transition from dawn to dusk, emulating the comforting rhythm of Earth's natural lighting. This illusion nurtures mental equilibrium and psychological well-being, bridging the gap between the lunar frontier and the familiar terrestrial realm.
The base embodies the harmonious convergence of technology, artistry, and functionality. The lightweight yet robust materials withstand the lunar environment's challenges. In this spinning lunar base, humanity's enduring spirit dances with scientific progress, enveloped in the marriage of architectural ingenuity and technical mastery. It stands as a testament to our capacity to create havens amidst the unknown, where the boundaries between Earth and the moon blur, and where the eternal human desire for exploration, comfort, and well-being finds its fulfillment.

Technical information

In order for Hoax to artificially resemble the level of gravity on Earth, it has to be 1G. For our 30 m. radius torus, to achieve 1 g artificial gravity at a given rotation rate, the following radius is necessary: 5.5 RMP for 30 m. (radius) , where :
G - the acceleration due to gravity at the surface of the Earth
RPM - rotations per minute

Every architecture is properly isolated from the surrounding void and adopts efficient countermeasures against different types of radiations;

• Access to the outside is possible only through pressurization/depressurization filter areas called “Airlocks”;

• glazed surfaces are equipped with an external shading system to deal with the most extreme temperature/radiation situations and possible impacts of micrometeorites;

• each element is made consistently with the chapter “program” , designed as an independent module, therefore separable from the others through specific watertight closing systems to enable the correct functioning of the station in case of damage of parts of it.

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