Author Topic: Proposed ITS Cargo Modules to Initiate a Chemical Industry on Mars  (Read 12544 times)

Offline CW

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Is polyurethane photo-stable under sunlight? I mean, would it be damaged by sunlight? Couldn't find any info on that so far.. .
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Online speedevil

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Is polyurethane photo-stable under sunlight? I mean, would it be damaged by sunlight? Couldn't find any info on that so far.. .

It will be damaged somewhat, various additives, going all the way to as simple as soot help with that.

Offline ThereIWas3

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Semiconductors are more than Silicon.  There also carefully controlled amounts of other elements and maybe minerals.  (I did take a course in this 45 years ago and have forgotten the details.  All I remember is hairy math involving the concentration probabilities of subatomic particles and quantum stuff.  Probably different now anyway.). It is real nano manufacturing.

I can not think of any reason these elements would NOT be present on Mars, especially in volcanic regions.  But they have to be found and extracted.
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Online speedevil

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Semiconductors are more than Silicon.  <snip>
I can not think of any reason these elements would NOT be present on Mars, especially in volcanic regions.  But they have to be found and extracted.
Modern fabs cost well over a billion dollars.
Yes, you can possibly do interesting useful things with a lower cost fab, but the earth fab has the free availability of all perfectly refined substances essentially free, as well as being mass unconstrained, and easy servicing of machines.

The actual active parts of a chip are ~0.3mm thick at most, so ~0.06g/cm^2, and cost perhaps $20/cm^2. Or $300/g. $300000/kg.

You'd have to be barking mad to try to make them on Mars, for the forseable future. (When you have several million people perhaps).

Even lightweight assembled electronics, are often well over $1000/kg, and it's questionable even in the medium term.

The actual weight of silicon in the active parts of your computer is probably several grams.

(you can thin the silicon to under a tenth of this thickness, microSD cards, for example are typically ten chips laminated on top of each other.)

Offline Robotbeat

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Computer chips are so small that, with BFR doing logistics, shipping costs are essentially free and there's no reason to make computer chips on Mars.

Different story for power electronics and solar cells, though. A low-resolution fab is just fine for those. It'll be a while until that's necessary, tho.

As far as self-sufficiency, you could fit about a trillion computer chips (not counting packaging, which could be done on Mars) as powerful as the Apollo guidance computer in your pockets. Just stock up! And the low-res power electronics fab could make computer chips in a pinch, but there's no reason to do that.
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Offline ThereIWas3

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Big complex chips, maybe, but here is a YouTube video of engineer Jeri Ellsworth .  Maybe something Mark Watney would know how to do...
"If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea" - Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Online speedevil

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Big complex chips, maybe, but here is a YouTube video of engineer Jeri Ellsworthorth

I'm aware of Jeris work. She has made unreliable low-current, poor performance chips, using commercially produced pure silicon wafers.
This is very similar to the 1952 demonstration of the first IC.

It's as helpful to general electronic use as a black powder rocket is to getting to Mars.

As a general point, modern processes make not only better, but smaller area chips, that are lower power.
A ton of fabricated silicon chips will last a small colony for many years.

Even solar cells are not hideously expensive to ship.
A ton of solar cells will (on earth) cost you $.50/W or so, which is ~$70/m^2 , at .3mm thick, $210K/m^3, or $80K/ton. $80/kilo or so, which is somewhat indicative of how hard they are to make.

You'd want to be able to make the glass on Mars, if using conventional panels - but even at .3mm thick (thinner ones are now generally used, and are worst case), it's quite sane to ship.


Offline Ionmars

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 So many chemicals. So many industries. Here is Lamontagne's rendering of s chemical complex on Mars:  :)

Edit: spelling
« Last Edit: 10/06/2017 01:33 AM by Ionmars »
* Mars: a convenient service station for an asteroid-sized spaceship en-route to Ceres. *

Offline biosehnsucht

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If there's some kind of crane assembled to remove / move the chemical processing units, then the satellite deploying version of BFS as cargo to Mars would work pretty well for landing large containerized units like described in the paper/slides.



It seems the jaw would have to open up more than 90 degrees, and the containerized unit removed somewhat horizontally initially, to clear the top of the BFS, before it can be lifted. Or perhaps only partially as depicted, but the crane would have to unload it both horizontally and vertically at the same time? I'm going to assume the hinge working in Martian gravity will be fine as it would need to work in Earth gravity to load it in the first place before launching things in Earth orbit from it (though possibly assisted externally with support, that could be arranged by assembling similar mechanisms at Mars).
« Last Edit: 10/06/2017 03:37 AM by biosehnsucht »

Offline Ionmars

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If there's some kind of crane assembled to remove / move the chemical processing units, then the satellite deploying version of BFS as cargo to Mars would work pretty well for landing large containerized units like described in the paper/slides.
...
...
It seems the jaw would have to open up more than 90 degrees, and the containerized unit removed somewhat horizontally initially, to clear the top of the BFS, before it can be lifted. Or perhaps only partially as depicted, but the crane would have to unload it both horizontally and vertically at the same time? I'm going to assume the hinge working in Martian gravity will be fine as it would need to work in Earth gravity to load it in the first place before launching things in Earth orbit from it (though possibly assisted externally with support, that could be arranged by assembling similar mechanisms at Mars).
I also noticed that image in the presentation. Lamontagne posted that same in-space release of a cargo vessel on NSF some time before IAC 2017, but I don't recall which thread.
* Mars: a convenient service station for an asteroid-sized spaceship en-route to Ceres. *

Offline Ionmars

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The purpose of the unhinged lower panel is to allow the entire heatshield side of the spaceship to be produced as one piece. When we proposed this as an option in the paper, we didn't know that SpaceX would want to develop this capability. Apparently they do.

The release of the vessel may be easier on Mars surface. We proposed a "vessel grappler" that could remove the vessel from the side. Also the half-fairing is a removable panel rather than hinged, so it is removed and set aside.

Edit: spelling
« Last Edit: 10/06/2017 12:56 PM by Ionmars »
* Mars: a convenient service station for an asteroid-sized spaceship en-route to Ceres. *

Offline Ionmars

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Lamontagne has already suggested a method for releasing the vessel into space. The half-fairing would be hinged as depicted in the presentation and the vessel attached to it. When the hinged panel opened, the vessel would come with it. When the vessel cleared the nose of the heatshield side, pusher rods would discharge it away from the ship.
* Mars: a convenient service station for an asteroid-sized spaceship en-route to Ceres. *

Online Llian Rhydderch

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Seems like if the large containers have high usefulness on Mars, the 50 tonne return payload to Earth might be contained in ISS/Shuttle/Drago-type cargo bags and safely secured using some type of military-type strap-down system.  All of that gear could be carried to Mars collapsed and compressed.  Example:
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Offline lamontagne

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Latest version of the vessel in Gator configuration.

Volume of pressure vessel payload is about 700 m3, mass of about 16 tonnes.
If used om Mars, I expect a crane could be used to remove the door, and then used to remove the payload.
« Last Edit: 10/07/2017 03:13 AM by lamontagne »

Offline Ionmars

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Seems like if the large containers have high usefulness on Mars, the 50 tonne return payload to Earth might be contained in ISS/Shuttle/Drago-type cargo bags and safely secured using some type of military-type strap-down system.  All of that gear could be carried to Mars collapsed and compressed.  Example:
...
...
Good idea. On Mars, just fill up packing bags with CO2.
* Mars: a convenient service station for an asteroid-sized spaceship en-route to Ceres. *

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