• Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Astronauts Make First Concrete In Space With Hope To Support Future Space Habitats

Discussion in 'Technology & Science' started by jamahir, Sep 11, 2019.

  1. jamahir

    jamahir ELITE MEMBER

    Messages:
    14,911
    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2014
    Ratings:
    +21 / 13,070 / -8
    Country:
    India
    Location:
    India
    Astronauts Make First Concrete In Space With Hope To Support Future Space Habitats

    Trending Desk
    News18 10 September 2019

    A new research now finds that concrete made in space could one day help humans build habitats on the moon and on Mars. Astronauts made cement for the first time in microgravity as part of a recent investigation aboard the International Space Station. With the experiment they showed that cement can harden and develop in space. The research was published April 24 in the journal Frontiers In Materials.

    Concrete, a mixture of sand, rocks ravel and a combination of water and cement powder is a strong and reliable building material here on Earth.

    Researchers in the new study have now said that it could also be a durable enough material to protect future astronauts from cosmic radiation and some of the dangers that come with living in space.

    Speaking about the same, lead author of the study Aleksandra Radlinska, an assistant professor of civil engineering at Penn State, said in a statement from NASA that while on missions to the Moon and Mars, humans and equipment will need to be protected from extreme temperatures and radiation, and the only way to do that is by building infrastructures on these extraterrestrial environments. He further added that one idea is to build with a concrete-like material in space.

    According to the researchers, if and when humans establish colonies in outer space, the colonists would be able to use local materials instead of having them sent from Earth, which would be a difficult, time-consuming and costly process.

    The study, called the Microgravity Investigation of Cement Solidification project, saw astronauts on the space station mixing water with tricalcium silicate, the main mineral ingredient in some of the most commonly used commercial cements. This mixture had never been created in microgravity.

    The investigation aimed to demonstrate and explain how cement forms in microgravity and if any unique microstructures might form. Notably, the project also allowed for the first-ever comparison between cement samples created on Earth and cement samples created in space.

    According to the NASA statement, when researchers on Earth compared the cement samples made on Earth with the cement samples made in space, they found that the cement created on the space station had very different microstructures than the cement made on Earth. One of the main differences noticed by the researchers was that cement made in space was much more porous than the Earth-made cement.

    Speaking about the same, Radlinska said that while increased porosity has direct bearing on the strength of the material, the scientists are yet to measure the strength of the space-formed material.

    The scientist says that they now know that there are some differences between Earth- and space-based systems and can take the next steps to find binders that are specific for space and for variable levels of gravity, from zero to that in Mars and in between.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 4
  2. masterchief_mirza

    masterchief_mirza FULL MEMBER

    Messages:
    1,853
    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2019
    Ratings:
    +2 / 3,186 / -0
    Country:
    Pakistan
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Great timing. I hear a certain moon Lander needs a headstone..
     
  3. fitpOsitive

    fitpOsitive SENIOR MEMBER

    Messages:
    5,793
    Joined:
    May 27, 2015
    Ratings:
    +13 / 5,405 / -1
    Country:
    Pakistan
    Location:
    Pakistan
    Humans are really the worst creature. They destroy absolute best place, and try to make worst the best. I mean, what kind of mentality is that.
     
  4. Protest_again

    Protest_again FULL MEMBER

    Messages:
    547
    Joined:
    May 19, 2019
    Ratings:
    +0 / 369 / -3
    Country:
    India
    Location:
    India
    Aren't you human? Why are you like this?
     
  5. fitpOsitive

    fitpOsitive SENIOR MEMBER

    Messages:
    5,793
    Joined:
    May 27, 2015
    Ratings:
    +13 / 5,405 / -1
    Country:
    Pakistan
    Location:
    Pakistan
    I try to love the things I have.
     
  6. VCheng

    VCheng ELITE MEMBER

    Messages:
    38,644
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2010
    Ratings:
    +57 / 32,654 / -4
    Country:
    Pakistan
    Location:
    United States
    That is one of the many reasons why finding water in space is the key.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  7. zip

    zip SENIOR MEMBER

    Messages:
    2,734
    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2010
    Ratings:
    +1 / 2,028 / -2
    Country:
    India
    Location:
    India
    Nature never excluded human from its fold ..Whatever human does is also a natural process ..It's our human ego which thinks itself to be exclusive and everything else as nature ..
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 3
  8. jamahir

    jamahir ELITE MEMBER

    Messages:
    14,911
    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2014
    Ratings:
    +21 / 13,070 / -8
    Country:
    India
    Location:
    India
    Along similar lines, some years ago I was wondering why we can't take pre-fab concrete blocks from Earth and attach them to the ISS. The OP mentions something about radiation shielding.

    Also, there can be a big spaceship whose outer layer is concrete blocks. The Earth's moon does not have ( isn't it ?? ) readily available liquid or ice water, but Mars has plenty of water under its two polar ice-caps.

    And why only spaceships, manned bases / habitats can be constructed out of such concrete instead of using metals like aluminium either fully or at least the outer walls.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2019
  9. war&peace

    war&peace ELITE MEMBER

    Messages:
    33,812
    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2015
    Ratings:
    +27 / 59,133 / -9
    Country:
    Pakistan
    Location:
    Sweden
    Read surah bani Israeel....
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 2
  10. Yaseen1

    Yaseen1 SENIOR MEMBER

    Messages:
    6,959
    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2014
    Ratings:
    +3 / 5,803 / -7
    Country:
    Pakistan
    Location:
    Pakistan
    I think concrete houses are not suitable for space and other planets,there are many other light and better alternative material available these days for building structures for accomodation which are much cost effective than concrete buildings
     
  11. Flash_Ninja

    Flash_Ninja SENIOR MEMBER

    Messages:
    2,613
    Joined:
    May 16, 2013
    Ratings:
    +0 / 2,996 / -0
    Country:
    Pakistan
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Because the ISS is already too heavy, too expensive, and outdated to need it

    and i imagine fully building from concrete is unsuitable because the risk of fracturing (from impacts) and dust is higher than other materials
     
  12. jamahir

    jamahir ELITE MEMBER

    Messages:
    14,911
    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2014
    Ratings:
    +21 / 13,070 / -8
    Country:
    India
    Location:
    India
    I don't think heaviness matters as a whole in zero / micro gravity though yes there is the issue of how much each component in the ISS can sustain the mass of another component fixed to it.

    Well, there has to be replacement to the ISS for which every country in the UNO must contribute to, financially and resource-wise, depending on the capacity of that country.

    I have read of Russian plans to have their own space station in some years.

    The website "Russian Space Web" contains details somewhere on it.

    Perhaps, like I said earlier, the concrete covering can be designed as blocks / modules. This will allow easier replacement of damaged blocks.
     
  13. Flash_Ninja

    Flash_Ninja SENIOR MEMBER

    Messages:
    2,613
    Joined:
    May 16, 2013
    Ratings:
    +0 / 2,996 / -0
    Country:
    Pakistan
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    The ISS is in earth orbit and from time to time needs adjustments to keep it stable, and manouveres to avoid collisions. Mass affects its ability to do such things.

    developement of a new synthetic material is needed, unless they can source concrete outside of earth, for large builds it seems impractical to ship the materials to space
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1