‘Robotic transport system’: Nasa announces plans to build first railway system on Moon

May15,2024



New Delhi: NASA is preparing to send astronauts back to the Moon and has announced its plans to build the first lunar railway system, called float (Flexible leverage on track). on engineers NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in California is currently developing the FLOAT system.
According to a NASA blog post, the project is designed to create a “robotic transportation system” that will support future lunar activities by astronauts visiting the Moon, with the space agency emphasizing its importance. transportation system For the daily functioning of a permanent lunar base in the 2030s.
Ethan Sklar, a robotics expert at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said, “We want to build the first lunar railway system that will provide reliable, autonomous and efficient payload transportation to the Moon. A sustainable, long-lasting robotic transportation The system will be critical to the daily operations of a permanent lunar base in the 2030s, as envisioned in NASA's Moon to Mars plan and mission concepts such as Robotic Lunar Surface Operations 2 (RLSO2).
Based on NASA's initial design, FLOAT would be specifically for the machines.
Main features in FLOAT system

  • The float system will use magnetic robots, designed to fly on a three-layer film track to reduce friction from lunar dust.
  • These robots will carry vehicles and will run at a speed of about 1.61 kilometers per hour.
  • The system aims to deliver about 100 tons of material per day to NASA's future lunar base
  • FLOAT's primary purpose is to provide transportation services to active astronaut areas on the Moon.
  • It will deliver lunar soil and other materials to various locations on the lunar surface.
  • The railway will also facilitate the transportation of large amounts of materials and equipment between spacecraft landing sites and other areas

NASA's blog post reads, “FLOAT will operate autonomously in the dusty, inhospitable lunar environment with minimal site preparation, and its network of tracks will roll-up over time to match evolving lunar base mission requirements.” /Can be reconfigured.”
It is noteworthy that FLOAT will be integrated into NASA artemis programThe aim of which is to return astronauts to the Moon and restore human presence for the first time since 1972.
The space agency has set a target landing date of September 2026 to land astronauts on the lunar surface.



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