Moontopia’s unique design relies on a series of time tested Roman arches fastened to each other. Each arch is constructed with synthetic keystone shaped bags. The lightweight bags are transported to the moon via shuttle and then filled with moon dust. Due to the moons gravitational force, 1/6th that of earth the dust filled bags can be six times as large as normal concrete masonry unit’s and still be moved by human hand or robot. The arched structures eliminate the need for traditional rigid structural supports. The keystone bags individually imitate typical earthly stone blocks. Moontopia structures can be assembled fast with the help of robots and temporary shoring. The arches can be scaled up or down depending on specific needs. The arches are modular in design so the colony can grow in phased construction over time. The blocks overall mass helps keep the structures firmly planted on the moon. A lightweight curtain covers the non-load bearing ends of the structure. The sally port entrance has secure roll up fabric doors.
The only feasible solution to the Moontopia competition is to use moon based material as the basic building material. Developing a concrete mix from the moon’s existing moon dust may require the addition of water. Transporting water to the moon in large quantities is not a reasonable option due to its weight. Making water on site would require the use of hydrogen and oxygen which is not readably available onsite and would need to be transported to the moon via shuttle. Developing a moon dust cement mix to create a solid building block will be the optimal solution. Until we can study moon dust in an earthly lab and discover a suitable lightweight binder we may rely on preformed lightweight bags to use as Moontopia’s individual building blocks.
With no natural light introduced into the buildings an artificially lit environment will need to be developed. Moondust is comprised of almost half silicon dioxide (quartz). We will make structural keystone shaped glass blocks. Then we will replace the opaque blocks with translucent blocks therefore introducing natural light into the environment. Once we are able to develop greenhouse type structures the colonists will be self-sufficient in their need for food. The plants will create oxygen which will in turn be used to create additional water. Water will need to be stored in large reservoirs. The reservoirs will be in inflatable structures surrounded by a ring of roman arches acting as the foundation for the roofing material.
Treating food waste will require the introduction of worm beds into the colony. Power for the colony will come from pyrolytic converters used to turn plant waste into methanol.
Eventually large structures will be created to raise livestock. Everything will be built in phases. Structures will be built first for colonists then for water and plants and finally animals.