Design Exploration: towards a Moon Architecture

DigitalFUTURES | EMA Workshop

Wednesday — Wednesday
September 22, 2021 —
December 15, 2021
11:00am — 1:00pm ET


Prof. Joseph Paradiso, Prof. Valentina Sumini, Arch. Guillermo Trotti 

Webinar Series  Syllabus

In the last twenty years, thanks to the success of the International Space Station, human space exploration activities have evolved truly on “behalf of all mankind,” as written in the NASA constitutive act. Now the humankind is on the verge of a massive exploration and exploitation phase on our closest celestial body and, as envisioned also by the ARTEMIS Program, the idea of one or more permanent settlements on the Moon is currently under study.

It is an effective challenge for our and future generations to design new shared infrastructure following the collaborative vision of the ISS experience, defining some kind of “master plan” for an inclusive and organized evolutionary settlement.

From an architectural perspective, this means the possibility of recalling in a completely new context the idea of an “ideal city,” as devised so many times in the past, as in the Renaissance or, more recently, by Le Corbusier and Oscar Niemeyer. Moreover, the extreme environmental conditions are indeed a major technological challenge, but also an opportunity, of being free in front of a new kind of blackboard and chalk set.

Indeed, designing a resilient and sustainable infrastructure for human missions on the Moon is a new challenge that requires new conceptual design approaches.

Architecture in Space, as the synthesis of scientific domains that “organize” the life of humans, relies on some fundamental pillars that are intrinsically interconnected: space sciences, engineering, robotics, industrial design, ergonomics, medicine, psychology, and, last but not least, art.

In these webinars  participants will learn how to approach this new design problem taking into account several expertise in various research fields and exploring strategies and solutions to settle on the Moon on a permanent basis.

These seminars will be collaborative with the Politecnico di Milano course "Architecture for Human Space Exploration" lectured  by Prof. Valentina Sumini.

The seminars  will cover:

  • Introduction to Space Architecture;
  • History of Space Architecture (orbital habitats) and contemporary planetary advanced design concepts (static and mobile);
  • Planning a Human Space Mission;
  • Habitation System and Habitability Requirements;
  • Fundamentals of In Situ Resources Utilization for construction;
  • Human Factor Design principles for integrated design solutions;
  • Fundamentals of computational design methods for multi-objective optimized space architecture solutions;
  • Construction autonomy and self-deployment of habitable structures on the Moon;
  • Sustainability of human space exploration.

Planned Talks

1st Seminar | September 22nd (11am-1pm ET)| Introduction to Space Architecture by Valentina Sumini (Politecnico di Milano and MIT Media Lab) and Prof. Joseph Paradiso (MIT Media Lab)

2nd Seminar | September 29th (11am-1pm ET) | Inspirational talk by Arch. Guillermo Trotti (Trotti  Studio)

3rd Seminar | October 6th (11am-1pm ET) | Mobile and Static lunar settlements. Talks by Scott Howe (Jet Propulsion Laboratory NASA / Caltech) and Prof. Kriss Kennedy (University of Houston - Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture)

4th Seminar | October 13th (11am-1pm ET) | ISRU and  Automated Additive Construction. Talks by Dr. Advenit Makaya (ESA) and  Prof. Roberto Naboni (University of Southern Denmark)

5th Seminar | October 27th (11am-1pm ET) |  Innovative Radiation shielding strategies. Talks by Arch. Christopher Maurer (Redhouse studio), Prof. Elena D'Onghia (UW-Madison), Prof. Marco Sumini and Eng. Lorenzo Isolan (University of Bologna)

6th Seminar | November 3rd (11am-1pm ET) | Visions and Advanced Concepts. Talks by  Arch. Melodie Yashar (ICON) and Arch. Georgi Petrov (SOM)

7th Seminar | November 10th (11am-1pm ET) | Human Factors Design and HCI. Talks by Prof. Olga Bannova (University of Houston - Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture), Prof. Guy André Boy (Université Paris-Saclay) and Pat Pataranutaporn (MIT Media Lab)

8th Seminar | November 17th (11am-1pm ET) | System integration. Talks by Dr. Barbara Imhof (LIQUIFER) and Prof. Larry Toups (University of Houston - Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture)

9th Seminar | December 1st (11am-1pm ET) | Living in space. Talk by Prof. Julien de Wit  (MIT EAPS) and Astronaut Paolo Nespoli (ESA)

10th Seminar | December 15th (11am-1.30pm ET) |  Inspirational talks by Prof. Jeffrey Hoffman (MIT AeroAstro), Prof. Dava Newman (MIT Media Lab) and Eng. Massimo Comparini (Thales Alenia Space)

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