Swarm Habitat: Lava Tube Base Design with Non-Orthogonal Modular Coordination of The Truncated Octahedral Modules



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2023 International Conference on Environmental Systems


Swarm Habitat is a concept for building a long-term, rational lunar base inside the lava tube, which has been pointed out as highly habitable but has been little explored. The development of a permanent base involves two types of issues: interior design issues, such as a comfortable interior for the long-term crew and a translation paths of travel that facilitates movement and emergency evacuation even in low gravity, and architectural scale issues, such as ease of construction in an unexplored area and transportation from the landing zone to the construction site.This paper attempts to solve these two problems by using modules that can reconfigure themselves autonomously and cooperatively like Swarm and their modular coordination.Swarm Habitat is designed from the perspective of the shape of the module and the interaction of its configurations. The orthogonal configuration of cylindrical modules, which has been used in many previous studies, is not suitable for construction in a 3-dimensional terrain of a lava tube, due to the increased exposed area, difficulty in transportation to the site, and difficulty in moving the interior space under lunar gravity. Therefore, a module with the truncated octahedron is adopted as a module shape that is more like a sphere, which is easy to roll and can be connected in multiple directions in a non-orthogonal manner.The four modules, the smallest in configuration, "crawl" around the terrain by changing their configuration, "slide" into the lava tube, and "flock" together to form the final module. The final 100-module base is constructed by "combining" them. The non-orthogonal configuration allows the crew to jump and move through pressurized space.The mainstay of Swarm Habitat is that it can establish modular coordination while sequentially adapting to the lunar gravity environment and the irregular site.


Takashi Mizuguchi, Keio University, Japan
Yashushi Ikeda, The University of Tokyo, Japan
ICES502: Space Architecture
The 52nd International Conference on Environmental Systems was held in Calgary, Canada, on 16 July 2023 through 20 July 2023.


lunar habitat, modular coordination, construction method