building on the moon
Within the next decade, the Artemis Mission will send astronauts to the Lunar South Pole, a region described as "The Peak of Eternal Light," where the sun is omnipresent and resides at a low angle of incidence. This site is likely to be near a crater rim that yields long duration illumination for solar power collection, and in proximity to permanently shadowed crater regions, which are of interest for water harvesting operations. Unlike conventional 3D prints, where layers are parallel to the ground, LINA will be 3D printed at a 60-degree angle to construct the continuous, vaulted roof. A regolith berm, prepared in advance, functions as an inclined print bed to support the initial layers. To prevent warping as the material cools, and to improve adhesion of the 3D print material to the regolith print bed, reusable metal tiebacks will be inserted into the berm to anchor the first layers. As the roof begins to take shape, a mobile excavator will follow behind the 3D print head to cover LINA with a protective regolith overburden. Finally, the regolith overburden is shaped to give LINA a sleek, yet symbiotic form designed to meld into the lunar landscape.