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Engineering technologies for lunar-based astronomy

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  • John P. Wetzel 1
  • Stewart W. Johnson 2
  • Structural Dynamics Engineer, Grumman Space Station Integration Division, 1760 Business Center Drive, Reston, VA 22090, U.S.A.
  • Principal Engineer, Advanced Basing Systems, BDM International, Inc., 1801 Randolph Road SE, Albuquerque, NM 87106, U.S.A.

Planning is underway to return to the Moon and explore Mars. Scientific outposts on the Moon will conduct a variety of exploration and experimentation, including astronomical observations. For lunar-based astronomy, we propose a progression in capability over time from small automated telescopes to a 16-meter reflector. Initial autonomous telescopes could be emplaced prior to permanent human outposts. Each telescope established on the Moon would be a working instrument performing exciting science as well as a science and engineering test bed for the next step-up in capabilities. Robotic telescopes on Earth, such as those at Mount Hopkins in Arizona, USA, continue to demonstrate the technology to operate small lunar telescopes which could be placed on the lunar surface as part of the Artemis initiative. Future transportation systems will allow emplacement of progressively larger and more complex lunar telescopes. Lunar observatories call for imaginative solutions to diverse problems in optics, controls, materials, structures, construction, energy management, and geotechnical and environmental engineering.

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Advances in Space Research

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  • Artificial guide stars
Catégories Science-Metrix
  • 1 - applied sciences ; 2 - engineering ; 3 - aerospace & aeronautics
Catégories Inist
  • 1 - sciences appliquees, technologies et medecines ; 2 - sciences exactes et technologie ; 3 - terre, ocean, espace ; 4 - astronomie
Catégories Scopus
  • 1 - Physical Sciences ; 2 - Earth and Planetary Sciences ; 3 - Space and Planetary Science
  • 1 - Physical Sciences ; 2 - Engineering ; 3 - Aerospace Engineering
Catégories WoS
  • 1 - science ; 2 - meteorology & atmospheric sciences
  • 1 - science ; 2 - geosciences, multidisciplinary
  • 1 - science ; 2 - astronomy & astrophysics
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