Hawai'i Space Grant Consortium, Hawai'i Institute of Geophysics and Planetology, University of Hawai'i, 1996

Air Supply
Purpose

To design and build a model air supply system for a human settlement on the Moon.

Key Words

atmosphere

photosynthesis


Materials

"Moon ABCs Fact Sheet"

construction materials
such as cardboard boxes
and tubes, blocks, hoses,
straws, string, pins, rubber
bands, tape, etc.

Procedure

1.
The atmosphere of Earth is a combination of several gases; review them from the "Moon ABCs Fact Sheet." What gas do humans and animals need to breathe in?

2.
What primary gas do humans and animals breathe out?

3.
What is photosynthesis?

4.
During the process of photosynthesis, what gas must green plants take in?

5.
What gas do the green plants produce?

6.
A process called electrolysis can separate water into hydrogen gas and oxygen gas. Another process is being developed which can extract oxygen from rocks and soil that contain it. Do you think these processes could be useful on the Moon? How?

7.
Review the "Moon ABCs Fact Sheet." Will the Moonbase settlers automatically be able to breathe the atmosphere or will special provisions need to be made?

8.
Design an air supply system to be used by the Moonbase inhabitants which will rely on oxygen and carbon dioxide available only from the Moon's resources. You may assume that ample electricity will be available.

9.
Construct a model of this system based on your design. It must include the application of at least four facts from the "Moon ABCs Fact Sheet." For example, how will the Moon's gravity affect the design of your system? Maybe your system will be very heavy but still portable by only a few Moonbase workers because the Moon's gravity is only 1/6th of Earth's gravity.

10.
Make a detailed and labeled sketch of the model.

Go to "Moon ABCs Fact Sheet."


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