Among its many priorities, NASA introduced a new one, building homes on Mars. By launching the ‘3D-Printed Habitat Challenge’, NASA looked to find 5 winners who could design 3D printed houses. They did exactly that, and now those teams have to design houses fit for the arrival of astronauts on the Red Planet.
At the start of the competition there were 18 teams who have signed in. They had to design virtual models that had to show us how a 3D-printed house fit for living on Mars would look like. As resources, they could have used recycled material and Martian rocks, which represented ‘indigenous resources’.
That’s because one of the goals of this mission would be to keep the planet waste-free. Apparently, some of use learned their lesson and don’t want to pollute another planet. Each of the aforementioned five winners took home $25000.
How would this work?
Well, the concept would be to send robot(s) to Mars which will be able to autonomously print a proper habitat for the astronauts’ arrival. Among the winning projects, we could see a roof which is able to bend when ‘marsquakes’ happen, a garden for providing food and oxygen or a spherical house which has a recreational room on its top floor.
Monsi Roman, the Centennial Challenges Project Manager from NASA, was asked what her feelings towards these designs were and when should we expect them. She answered that somewhere around the year 2030 we would see steps taken into this journey.
She also said that it’s more likely that we will see such a house on the moon first. Through this competition, NASA hoped to encourage the use of 3D-printing technology right here, on Earth.