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Lunar Surface Site Preparation for Landing/Launch Padand Blast Shield Construction

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: 80NSSC22PA953
Agency Tracking Number: 221851
Amount: $149,968.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: T7
Solicitation Number: STTR_22_P1
Solicitation Year: 2022
Award Year: 2022
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2022-07-13
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2023-08-25
Small Business Information
110 East Houston Street, 7th Floor
San Antonio, TX 78205-2990
United States
DUNS: 117753986
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Sam Ximenes
 (210) 404-2981
Business Contact
 Sam Ximenes
Phone: (210) 404-2981
Research Institution
 The University of Texas at San Antonio
San Antonio, TX 78249-0000
United States

 Nonprofit College or University

This proposal builds on our NASA fundednbsp;prototype BrickBot for technology demonstration as the first step in creating anbsp;BrickLayer system for building a lunar Launch/Landing Pad (LLP). The BrickLayer usesnbsp;feedstock of raw regolith to produce bricks in anbsp;single-step lunar regolith melting, brick forming and placement method without use of grouts or mortar for landing pad creation, or for any flat hardened surface area such as roads or foundations.To enable the brickmaking process, our proposed innovation is a multi-step process of regolith worksnbsp;executed by multiple machines operating autonomously or in remote control mode with step sequencing/timing to enable machine-to-machine collaboration. The process includes construction system components using two separate mobility platform types, one for landing zone site preparation and another for LLP production. The site preparation platform employs a versatile autonomous, single, compact, robotic rover for interchangeable tool implements: (a) tool for bulk sieving of large rocks from the site, (b) excavator drum bucket, derived from the NASA developed Regolith Advanced Surface Systems Operations (RASSOR) and with hauler serves a dual function of excavation and supplying regolith feedstock for the BrickLayer, (c) site leveling tool, and (d) vibrating compaction roller. The LLP production platform is a variation of the All-Terrain Hex-Legged Extra-Terrestrial Explorer (ATHLETE), a six-legged robotic lunar rover developed by NASA. The ATHLETE platform functions interchangeably for our Bricklayer production system and our Regolith Particle Acquisition and Containment (RegoPAC) system, utilized for LLP blast shield construction.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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