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Lunar Polar Resource Prospecting: Processing and analysis

Mon, 08/12/2019 - 11:35
Contract Nr.: 
4000111975
GSP Ident.: 
13-068-a
Keywords: 
ISRU
Moon
Volatiles
Regolith
Contractor: 
The OPEN UNIVERSITY
Country: 
UK
Start Date: 
Friday, May 20, 2016
End Date: 
Friday, April 21, 2017
Description: 

A package is foreseen which will assess the resource utilisation potential of the lunar surface by drilling, extracting and chemically processing samples of lunar regolith before performing chemical and isotopic analysis on the derived products. In doing so the package can also address questions of fundamental scientific interest. The first platform targeted for such a package is the Russian Luna‐27 (Luna‐Resurs) mission. The sample processing and analysis functions of the package build on the work performed during the Lunar Volatile Resource Analysis Package study (L‐VRAP: contract 4000103345/11/NL/AF), which defined a miniaturised chemical laboratory, defined to quantify the resource potential of volatiles in the lunar regolith. The objectives of the present study were to further develop a concept for a sample processing and analysis package in support of resource prospecting on the Moon, with an emphasis on the polar regions. Specifically the activity aimed to provide a concept of sufficient fidelity and maturity as to allow the process of development to flight to begin circa first quarter 2014, for flight in 2019. All elements of the package, from system level down to component level, were to be defined so as to demonstrate compliance with the system requirements and to provide details on internal and external interfaces.

Executive summary: