NASA-Approved 3D-Printed House Lets You ‘Experience Mars On Earth’
A futuristic 3D-printed house that lets guests ‘experience Mars on Earth’ will soon offer you the chance to experience what an interplanetary vacation of the future may be like.
Nestled in the woods of upstate New York along the Hudson River, Tera will be hired out to holiday-makers hoping to experience what sustainable life could be like on Mars.
‘Tera’ is the brainchild of AI SpaceFactory, a New York City design agency that was awarded $500,000 (£386,000) earlier this year for winning NASA’S 3D-Printed Habitat Challenge with its previous ‘Marsha’ habitat.
Each stay will be used to fund the mission of the firm behind its design, which hopes to research and develop the renewable and sustainable technologies of the future.
This technology will be used both here on Earth and, they say, will be one day form the basis of a sustainable colony on the red planet.
Tera’s design and materials can be composted at the end of its life, bringing the out-of-this world, sustainable technology built for Mars back to Earth.
Tera was built from the same 3D printing technologies and compostable materials as Marsha for longterm, sustainable life on Mars.
Like its predecessor, the NASA-award-winning Martianhabitat Marhsa, Tera was constructed from from a 3D-printed biopolymer basalt composite, a material developed from crops like corn and sugar cane.
It was tested and validated by NASA as at minimum 50 per cent stronger and more durable than concrete.
Writing on the firm’s website, a spokesman said: ‘This material has the potential to be leaps and bounds more sustainable than traditional concrete and steel, leading to a future in which we can eliminate the building industry’s massive waste of unrecyclable materials.
‘It could transform the way we build on Earth – and save our planet. Each Tera will build on the last until we achieve highly autonomous structurally performing human-rated habitats.
‘Just like Marsha informed Tera, all the knowledge we gain from Tera will feed back into our extraterrestrial design and construction – ultimately enabling human life on Mars.’
AI SpaceFactory’s Marhsa design picked up the top prize in NASA’s Mars Habitat challenge to build the first Mars dwelling prototype back in May.
The large pod-like cylinder made from natural, biodegradable materials that is naturally found on the Red Planet.
The innovative structure can shelter astronauts from harsh winds and solar radiation and is fully equipped with onsite labs, dormitories and fitness areas.
AI SpaceFactory constructed a model of a pod using automated 3D printing in the final phase of the US space agency’s challenge and was awarded $500,000 (£386,000).
It completed a large cylinder that could hold 1,200 gallons (5,500L) of waters using automated 3D-printing machines.
For these pods, the team used what they call a ‘Martian polymer’ that the firm says can be made from matter found or grown on Mars.
The polymer is used as a concrete substitute and has been hailed by the company as being a innovative form of building material.
AI SpaceFactory described it on its website as: ‘a superior tensile and compressive strength, extreme durability in freeze-thaw cycles, and enhanced ductility.
The company says NASA would need to send machines to Mars in advance of human astronauts to ‘harvest’ the basalt-composite from the Martian landscape.
This would provide the raw materials for robotic printers to then arrive to start onsite construction.