Blast a Home in the Moon? (Mar, 1962)

I’m not really sure how this is supposed to work. Where would all the material from that sphere go? I suppose if you used a nuke then you could vaporize it, but then I don’t think you’d want to live there.

Blast a Home in the Moon?

THE latest in a series of proposals for your lunar living facilities—in case you decide to make the trip—suggests construction could begin even before you land. A projectile from Earth would carry special shaped charges to blast a shaft (Fig. 2A) in the Moon’s surface. At a predetermined depth it would blow a spherical chamber (2B).

When the construction crew lands, an airtight membrane would be dropped into the chamber (2C) and inflated, and equipment and supplies would be installed (2D). The finished Moon base would consist of a series of the pressurized chambers connected by tunnels. Surface structures would contain airlocks, according to the proposal made to the American Rocket Society by a researcher from General Electric’s Missile and Space Vehicle Department, Philadelphia.

  1. Bob says: January 28, 20088:16 am

    It looks like they would aim for a low density area, something that would compact well. The cavity would result from the compaction of the material, nothing to dispose of on the surface. The material could also be used for the glassy substrate.

  2. Azrael Brown says: January 28, 20084:23 pm

    If you nuke it and ‘vaporize’ it, you’re just changing the matter’s form, not removing it. Nuking 20-tons of dirt into vapor results in 20-tons of super-heated gas erupting from the hole it made. Not pleasant, methinks. I suppose, if you calculate it right, a nuclear charge could expand the dirt without vaporization, compress it around the edges, and then glassify it to hold it in place…but there’s a lot of mechanics going on there. When we did underground nuke testing, it resulted in a coneshaped creater, not an underground void. Even with a conventional explosive, ‘expanding’ and pushing out the sides would leave behind a lot of loose dirt prime for a cave-in. It’s not a well-thought-out plan, no matter how it’s cut. If it were that easy, we’d be doing it here on Earth.

  3. Stannous says: January 28, 20089:47 pm

    I think trying to “sculpt” with explosives on the Moon with 1/6th gravity would be a waste of time and only succeed in creating more craters.

    How do you create enough heat to fuse the soil without nukes? And even then you’ve created nothing but a bunch of radioactive chambers.

  4. jayessell says: January 29, 20088:58 am

    Illustration D: What? No elevator?

    I think The Moon has enough holes in it already!
    Find a crater with steep sides, build your habitat there, and bulldoze Lunar soil over it.

    Was there an article posted that proposed finding a mountain at one of the Lunar poles and building a circular railroad track 3/4s of the way up around the mountain?
    The entire building would then travel a bit a day to stay in the sunlight.
    At the Lunar equator, they’d have to travel 10 mph continuously to stay in (or out!) of sunlight.

  5. spayced says: February 5, 20082:35 pm

    While there are certainly some problems with the article, I think they are on the right track with covering your lunar base with lunar soil. The moon doesn’t have a protective atmosphere like the earth, and that would be an easy way to defeat evil cosmic rays and comets and such.

    Check out some of the plans NASA is considering:…

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