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General Information:

Description

Natural caverns occur on the moon in the form of ‘lava tubes’, which are the drained conduits of underground lava rivers.1 The exact dimensions of these lava tubes are yet to be investigated, but researchers estimate their widths to be tens to hundreds of meters, and the upper layer to be more than 10 meters thick.

Consequently, lava tubes interiors are expected to provide naturally protected environment from micrometeorites, cosmic rays and the extreme temperature differences between lunar day (~ 100 degrees C) and night (~ –173 degrees C).

 

"Skylight" entrance in the Sea of Tranquility (8.34°N, 33.22°W)
NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University


Two of the Google Lunar Xprize teams, Team HAKUTO and Astrobotic Technology Inc. are planning to explore a pit located in Lacus Mortis (44.96°N,  25.61°E).3

Info About Org/Individual

 

Progress Status

Research: Ongoing

Est Investment Cost

 

 

Est Time to Maturity

Citations:

  1. "Marius Hills Pit Offers Potential Location for Lunar Base." Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Aug. 2016.
  2. Haruyama, J., et al. (2009), Possible lunar lava tube skylight observed by SELENE cameras,Geophys. Res. Lett.36, L21206, doi:10.1029/2009GL040635.
    1. Possible lunar lava tube skylight observed by SELENE cameras
  3. Hong IS, Yi Y, Yu J, Haruyama J, 3D Modeling of Lacus Mortis Pit Crater with Presumed Interior Tube Structure, J. Astron. Space Sci. 32, 113-120 (2015). http://dx.doi.org/10.5140/JASS.2015.32.2.113
    1. 3D Modeling of Lacus Mortis Pit Crater with Presumed Interior Tube Structure
 

 

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