Investigation of Life Support and Habitability Requirements for a Pressurized Lunar Rover 2009-01-2505
The Terrapin Undergraduate Rover for Terrestrial Lunar Exploration (TURTLE) system was developed as part of a senior design course at the University of Maryland; it has since become a test bed for habitability and life support studies. The design requirements for the project dictated a 2,500 kg pressurized lunar rover to sustain two crew members for eight days with a range of 100 km. Part of the design effort included a full-scale mock-up populated with volumetric representations of interior elements. This research proposes a solution to the life support requirements for spacecraft as well as design requirements for other habitat elements. An analysis of relevant technologies and their application to small rovers is presented. Habitability issues (with respect to interior layout of life support hardware) are also considered. Testing was done with the full-scale TURTLE mockup to determine suitable configuration of life support equipment. In addition, the logistical demands of a rover-outpost combination are discussed and design requirements for both are included.