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Footprints on the moon

Optimized Lunar Airlock

We proposed a bicameral airlock design tailored to the lunar environment. Given the well documented challenge of regolith contamination of lunar habitats, and the imperative to conserve consumable resources, Apollo-style surface EVAs that contaminate the habitat and fully vent the habitable volume are not sustainable; airlocks are therefore necessary for long-term lunar surface missions. With the considerable mass penalties associated with the addition of an airlock, means of reducing mass and optimizing airlock volumes are required. We used an information-bearing digital modeling techniques, coupled with bidirectional data between geometric design and analysis criteria, to reduce structural mass while optimizing volumetric displacement and structural efficiency. Such intelligent modeling allows for the rapid evaluation of the quality and efficacy of the stipulated airlock designs, in order to efficiently select candidates out of a number of preliminary airlock shell geometries.

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