Mechanics of Locomotion and Lunar Surface Vehicle Concepts 640049

This paper describes methods, based on applied mechanics and simplified operational analysis, for the evaluation of various vehicle concepts considered feasible for lunar surface exploration, and shows processes through which means of locomotion may be optimized. Although little is known of the physico-geometrical properties of the lunar surface which relate to vehicle mobility, by assuming a plausible spectrum of properties, valuable preliminary information can be derived with respect to the probable effectiveness of various feasible lunar vehicle concepts.
Wheeled, tracked, screw-propelled, and walking vehicles are analyzed and their probable performances compared. Indications at the present time are that wheeled vehicles may probably best suit the purpose of lunar exploration.


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