Sara Kocevska, Tamara Stefanovic

CaTegory: Mars / Moon / Space Design

Title: Mars Facade System: Modular Design of the Mars Habitat's Envelope


The initial aim of our research is to propose an innovative architectural design of a façade envelope that would be applicable to a dome shaped Martian Habitat. The starting form of our study is the Fuller’s geodesic dome. Considering the latest achievements in the fields of science and technology, our intention is to develop a structural cross-section of the wall by implementing in-situ materials, regolith and basalt, into a modular system of prefabricated triangular panels. Consequently, solving the issue of the joints between the panels under an angle, we are aiming to provide a structural solution by using a rod system with a robotic assembly. Lastly, our most important design objective is to develop a window system in order to provide a healthy environment for the crew. By summing up all the information we were able to establish the design in a way to overcome all obstacles, while allowing natural light and expanding the view towards the Martian horizon.

Project key words: Mars’ habitat envelope, Prefabricated panels, Modular design, In-situ Resource Utilization (ISRU), Regolith Radiation Protection

Space applications of the project: The aim of this study is designing the most optimal structure for future façade envelope on Mars by adapting familiar architectural principles to the severe environmental conditions of the planet. The idea is to achieve not only structural stability and durability but also functional and aesthetical form which will protect the crew from natural hazard while creating the pleasant and comfortable ambient. Modular units were designed in a way that each module represents one function. Therefore, by joining the units, future Martian crew could create the whole community system adaptable to any of their needs.

Earth applications of the project: The overall design of the future façade envelope on Mars unites the latest achievement in the field of science, engineering and technology, creating the sustainable form which emerges from the Martian landscape. However, the concept of the structural design of Mars’ Habitat creates an opportunity of being implemented also in different types of harsh, inaccessible environmental conditions on Earth: covering both extremely high and low temperatures. In this way, we would be able to study and investigate the structural performances regarding form and possible materials, while taking into account and testing crew endurance in such circumstances.


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