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Multifunctional Expandable Lunar Lite & Tall Tower (MELLTT)


Term:

Spring

Department:

16: Aeronautics and Astronautics

Faculty Supervisor:

Jeffrey Hoffman

Faculty email:

jhoffma1@mit.edu

Apply by:

Feb 3, 2020

Contact:

glordos@mit.edu

Project Description

Three UROP positions: this is a hands-on project that has just been proposed to the National Institute of Aerospace / NASA BIG Idea Challenge forum. An interdisciplinary team of 17 graduate and undergraduate students has proposed a tall, lightweight tower as infrastructure to support the exploration of the Lunar South Pole’s permanently shadowed regions. These regions have been dark for billions of years and are believed to have accumulated water ice and other frozen volatiles that will be useful to future explorers. Our tower design provides an elevated platform with multiple lines of sight to the Sun, Earth, orbiting satellites and surface assets near and inside the permanently shadowed regions. A proof-of-concept Earth-conditions prototype tower will be built and tested during spring and summer, and presented at NASA Langley in October. We can support three UROP positions in the fields of mechanical engineering, radio communications and system design. You will work together with experienced graduate students. The project ends in October 2020.

Pre-requisites

An interest in electrical engineering or radio amateur hobby.