MOTOR car giant GM has revealed that it is designing a fleet of lunar gliders for astronauts to drive on the moon.
GM partnered with Lockheed Martin – an American aerospace, weapons, defense, information security and technology corporation – for the project.
“GM is a global leader in automotive manufacturing and technology, and Lockheed Martin is a global leader in spacecraft,” said Kirk Shireman, vice president of Lunar Exploration Operations at Lockheed Martin. .
He added: “The two companies joining forces to build a mobile system on the Moon makes a lot of sense.
According to a press release by Lockheed Martin, only 5% of the moon has been discovered by mankind, so their mission is rooted in helping astronauts explore the remaining 95% by means of motorized means. .
Of course, when designing a fleet of space buses (each with a different purpose), there are many questions to consider.
“How do we navigate to avoid tire contact, how do we avoid dents in mesh tires? How do we do it,” said Jeff Nield, GM Defense Product and Experience Manager. avoid contact at low speed”.
Nield also raised concerns about traffic and, more importantly, collisions.
The project is huge, but nothing new for GM, who helped build the first vehicle for Apollo 15 some 50 years ago.
The rover, dubbed the Apollo Lunar Terrain Vehicle (LTV), allowed astronauts to explore the lunar surface like never before.
It doubles, doubles, to fit in a small capsule on the lunar rover, before being unpacked and driven 4.7 miles across the moon.
Nield explains that GM has been doing extensive research on older vehicles to see what it can do with next-generation models.
“Our job isn’t to get rid of the proven stuff on the lunar surface,” Nield said.
He added: “A lot of the vehicles that are sent out have trouble doing what we call ‘survival of the night’, we wanted something that could last overnight – it needed to charge via solar energy. heaven, hibernate and resurrect.”
According to Nield, the lack of gravity is not the only problem, but also the bulky suits and protective equipment of the astronauts.
“We started looking at the best way to control the vehicle without using our feet. The original rover had a T handle – forward, reverse and steer, almost like controlling a helicopter. Our team will try to come up with a more intuitive way to do it,” Nield said.
Whatever GM does in terms of design, we can expect it to change the way humans explore the moon for generations to come.
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https://www.the-sun.com/tech/4441558/moon-gm-lunar-buggy/ This is how humans can drive around the Moon