Wednesday, July 17, 2019

HD quality official renders of SpaceX Starship at Mars Base Alpha and on the Moon

In April Elon Musk on his Twitter profile teased two new renders with SpaceX's Starship on the Moon and at Mars Base Alpha. Unfortunately those were low resolution images. Now we have a HD resolution versions (press Open link in new tab to view) of those renders from SpaceX's Principal Mars Development Engineer Paul Wooster's presentation at Humans to Mars summit 2019 organized by Explore Mars.

SpaceX Starship at Mars Base Alpha HD

SpaceX Starship on the Moon HD

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Saturn V and SpaceX Starship at launch pad by Gravitation Innovation

Today 50 years ago the most powerful rocket ever built - Saturn V - launched first astronauts to set foot on the Moon. But right now the leading NewSpace company SpaceX is building even more powerful rocket for Mars - Starship & Super Heavy. SpaceX is hoping it to be operational in 2021.

Here is a poster by Gravitation Innovation with Saturn V and SpaceX Starship at launch pad. Note the Starship is at front so it appears a lot bigger than Saturn V at back. In reality the difference in height is minimal with Saturn V being 111 m high and Starship & Super Heavy at 118 m by current design which is subject to change.

Saturn V and SpaceX Starship at launch pad by Gravitation Innovation

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Mars rover returning to lander by Jaroslaw Marcinek

Picture of the Day 13/7/2019 - Mars rover returning to a lander by Polish freelance illustrator Jaroslaw Marcinek. More of his art here.

Mars rover returning to lander by Jaroslaw Marcinek

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Nazi Moon base by Darren Tan

Singaporean freelance illustrator Darren Tan visualizing the conspiracy theory of a secret Nazi base on the far side of the Moon.

This alternate history science fiction myth was somewhat started by Rocket Ship Galileo, a 1947 young adult novel by Robert Heinlein, which features three teenagers who travel to the Moon and discover a secret Nazi base. Since then the "secret Nazi Moon base" cultural myth has been used in fiction frequently, including The Man in the High Castle novel (1962) by Philip K. Dick (and its recent TV series adaptation), Iron Sky movie (2012) and Wolfenstein: The New Order video game (2014). We should remember that Von Braun's V-2 rocket was the first man made object reaching outer space in June, 1944, and it was the base for both US and Soviet space programs. So the myth had some logical grounds.

Nazi Moon base by Darren Tan

Saturday, July 6, 2019

Building an industrial complex on Mars by William Black

To survive on Mars longterm humans will need to live off the land (a practice in space exploration called In Situ Resource Utilization or shorter ISRU), so we will need to extract, process and store local resources of the planet. Here is William Black's artistic vision of building an industrial complex on Mars at Syria Planum, located south from Noctis Labyrinthus. More of his space concept art here.

Building an industrial complex on Mars at Syria Planum by William Black

Thursday, July 4, 2019

Mars colony in artificial, domed canyon

Picture of the Day 4/7/2019 - design of what could be a human colony in a narrow, artificial, domed canyon on Mars by LAVA architects. This image was done for a design of Masdar City (next to Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates) - a futuristic sustainable city project in development and intended to be a hub for cleantech companies.

Mars colony in artificial domed canyon - design for Masdar City (UAE) by LAVA

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Mars Ice Home concept by NASA, SEArch+ & Clouds AO

Mars Ice Home is a feasibility study conducted at NASA Langley Research Center in 2016 in collaboration with human-centered space design studio SEArch+ and architects from CloudsAO. Responding to the problem of galactic cosmic radiation being the most significant issue for human health on long duration Mars surface missions, the concept incorporates in situ resource utilization derived water-ice for radiation shielding and as a structural component.

Water, a hydrogen-rich material, is an excellent shielding material for galactic cosmic rays – and many areas of Mars have abundant water ice just below the surface. The Ice Home concept balances the need to provide protection from radiation, without the drawbacks of an underground habitat. The design maximizes the thickness of ice above the crew quarters to reduce radiation exposure while also still allowing light to pass through ice and surrounding materials. The water-ice fills and freezes within cellular pockets of the precision-manufactured inflatable membrane. The interior of the habitat would be insulated from the ice with a cellular layer of carbon dioxide, which can easily be extracted from the Martian atmosphere.

Mars Ice Home exterior by NASA, SEArch+ & Clouds AO

Mars Ice Home greenhouse by NASA, SEArch+ & Clouds AO

Mars Ice Home by NASA, SEArch+ & Clouds AO