We all have got our eyes set on the Red Planet. Although the time when we might actually move up there is not here and probably won’t be here soon enough, NASA is already busy working on how people will live on Mars once they do make it to there. This is where the ‘Mars Base Challenge’ comes in that was organized by NASA along with 3D printing company MakerBot.
The competition was hosted on Thingiverse website that caters to designs for 3D printers. The competition was about coming up with designs for living space that the future astronauts will use. The winner of this competition was submitted by Noah Hornberg from Michigan who submitted a ‘honeycomb’ design.
NASA asked the entrants to consider a number of factors while designing the house; Mars’ cold temperature, high radiation levels, lack of oxygen and the frequent dust storms.
In his entry, Mr. Hornberg wrote; ‘My solution is to use the tessellating hexagon due to its compactness and modular potential. I have extrapolated on the idea of a fully functional apartment on Mars with all the modern amenities fit inside 16ft (5 metre) diameter hexagons. I think that to present Mars life to people and actually make it appealing to the public, it needs to feel like home and reflect the lifestyle trends of Earth living.’
He believes that his design will be far more practical if you are considering long term living and a hexagon shape will resist weather far better and won’t budge when subjected to pressure as compared to other shapes such as square. Now to the question of heat; a huge subterranean container that will be filled with water shall be present in an underground electric heater. The steam will keep the bottom of the house heated while also providing power to the steam-powered generators.
A total of 228 submissions were recorded for the competition with the winner taking with him a MakerBot Replicator Desktop 3D printer.