Click to viewWhen the Ares V rocket lands on the moon next decade, part of its payload will be a full-functioning, instant moon base that will be ready for a several-month long habitation. At least, if experimental architecture firm Architecture and Vision has anything to say about it. The firm's design, called Moon Base Two, was a hot topic at the recent Gravity Free conference in Chicago, and could actually work. More pictures, plus the beta version, below.
Here you can see the base from ground level. The station automatically deploys after Ares lands, and can host up to 4 people for 6 months. Architecture and Vision's website suggest that it will be an ideal halfway point between temporary and permanent housing for humans on the moon.
An earlier version of the base, Moon Base One, was inflatable. This is similar to other inflatable bases that NASA has been testing in Antarctica.
I like both designs, though Moon Base Two looks like it might be more durable. Apparently the dome shape is the best one for capturing solar energy. Emily Kemper has a great report on Archinect about what people said about the Moon Base Two project at Gravity Free.
Moon Base Two [Architecture and Vision]