The International Lunar Research Station
The International Lunar Research Station, or ILRS, is an international lunar outpost under construction in the Peary crater on the Moon's near side. Designs for the outpost's main hub, a reinforced geodesic dome, began in June 2010. Construction of the dome began on September 09, 2010, in Rutaka, East Asian Federation, by the Aerospace Exploration Agency (AEXA). Construction of the additional modules for the station is proceeding in other nations for various nations' research.
Plans for the ILRS were announced at an AEXA conference shortly after the opening ceremonies for the Taoyuan Space Tether for a triad of space-related projects, including the space elevator, the New Toyohara arcology, and a "Project Inluresta". Project Inluresta was revealed as an international lunar base in early August 2010, and it was announced that design of component buildings was underway, and that the Federation's contributions would use knowledge gleaned from the New Toyohara experiment, and be shipped to the moon via the Space Tether. Several other national space agencies, including the Nordic Space Agency of the Imperium Skandinavisk, the Europa Space Agency (Kingdom of Europa), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration of the Union of Everett, and the Soviet Federal Space Agency (Soviet Union) declared support for the project, and would contribute various modules to the project.
Preperation and construction of the site on the Moon at Peary crater began on September 15, 2010, with final assembly of the panels into the main dome completed on September 29, 2010, with the assistance of EcruFox aeronautics specialists.
The station's proposed design is a central hub, composed of a large, transparent geodesic dome, and several underground radial corridors with locations at regular intervals for laboratory, habitation, and processing modules, further interconnected by a series of vertice corridors, to make the overall design of the station somewhat like a spiderweb. A spaceport will be connected to the main hub by a larger corridor to allow for large containers to be transported to the hub from docked spacecraft.
The station is designed to be infinitely expandable as resources allow, and can even support a small permanent settlement as progress goes along.
The ILRS is planned to be powered by a combination of Solar and Fusion power. The Peary crater features four Peaks of Eternal Sunlight, so solar power is a feasible power source. A collection of photovoltaic arrays near the lip of the crater will generate up to one gigawatt of electricity at all times. Fusion power would be utilized as a backup, in the case that solar power cannot meet the energy demands of research conducted at the station. In addition to ground level solar power, an alternative power source being considered is space-based solar power, being transferred from satellites in orbit via microwaves.
On surface transport is provided in various ways. Between modules on the eight main radial corridors is a maglev trolley system designed for both speed and, to not be affected by the moon's low gravity. It provides fast transport of people and equipment between modules and the main hub with minimal downtime. For surface transport outside of the base, Volvo and STAG, two Skandinavisk companies, are designing the NSA-X17 Lunar vehicle, for fast transport of people about the surface. The Everetti NASA is contributing Lunar Expeditionary Vehicle, which feature an airtight passenger cabin, a fully enclosed life support system, and fusion powered-eight wheel drive control.
To and From EarthEdit
The main means of transport to and from Earth are the Everetti Expedition-class space shuttles and the Taoyuan Space Tether-based Utility Shuttle. The Skandinavisk company STAG and the Nordic Space Agency are responsible for the production, update, and design of the NSA-SV15 Battleaxe, for transporting people and heavy equipment to the surface.
All inter-module radial corridors will be underground, and lined with reinforced concrete, with airlock doors and airtight safe harbors at regular intervals. The Main Dome will be complemented by a metal truss reinforcement system to prevent collapses. In the event of a puncture in a module or corridor, local airtight doors will seal.