Resilient ExtraTerrestrial Habitats
NASA selects Purdue for new institute researching space habitats
We are establishing a new interdisciplinary effort at Purdue University to perform the science and establish the knowhow to build resilient extraterrestrial habitats.
Purdue offers one of the most favorable venues for the creation of a program in Extraterrestrial Habitat Engineering. In addition to our fame as the home of more astronauts than any other institution in the world, including the first and last men on the Moon, we are also home to a highly ranked department of Aeronautical and Astronautical, Mechanical and Civil Engineering, and a new, but now highly visible, program in Planetary Science in the EAPS department.
Members of these departments have recently been active as part of NASA’s GRAIL mission, which mapped the Moon’s gravity field to unprecedented precision. One of the Purdue-centered discoveries from this mission was the existence of a network of large, empty caves in the lunar lava flows. The lava tubes may form the basis for ideal habitats on the Moon or Mars, offering instant protection to astronauts from temperature variations, radiation and meteorite impacts.Our interdisciplinary team represents an extensive accomplishments in leadership of large, distributed research collaborations and recognized nationally and internationally expertise in geotechnical, mechanical, earthquake, structural, engineering and earth and planetary sciences.