Jeffrey Montes
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Mars Ice House

3D printed Martian Ice Shelter Concept

client: NASA
my role/scope: architectural design (in collaboration with SEArch and Clouds AO)
type: freelance

The solar system is awash with water. From Jovian Europa to Saturnian Enceladus, from the Kuiper belt to the asteroid belt, most planetary bodies in our home solar system feature water in high percentages and quantities. On Mars, more than five million cubic kilometers of water ice have been identified - enough to cover the planet to a depth of thirty five meters. Mars Ice House taps into this vast supply of water ice to propose an autonomously 3D printed habitat for four explorers. On September 27th, 2015, the project was awarded first place in Phase 1 of NASA's 3D Printed Habitat Challenge. 

Fig. 1: Various views

Fig. 2: Photographs of 3D printed model

Fig. 3: Surface deployment sequence

Project Team

Clouds Architecture Office
    Ostap Rudakevych
    Masayuki Sono
    Yuko Sono
    Jeffrey Montes

Space Exploration Architecture
    Christina Ciardullo
    Kelsey Lents 
    Michael Morris
    Melodie Yashar


Jared W. G. Atkinson; Planetary Geophysics, MIT
Asmbld Construction Robotics: Petr Novikov, Yaz Khoury
Maria Banks PhD, Geology and Planetary Scientist, Planetary Sciences Institute
Kim Binstead PhD, Associate Professor, ICS Depatment, University of Hawaii
Casey J. Handmer PhD, Applied Mathematics, California Institute of Technology
Stefan Harsan Farr, Engineer and Software Architect
Jeffrey H. Hoffman PhD, Professor of Practice of Aerospace Engineery, MIT Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics
Norbert Koemle PhD, Geophysics, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Space Research Institute
Leslie E. Robertson Associates: Elias E. Matar, Edward Roberts, N. Brent Chancellor
Javier Roa, Orbital Mechanics/Aerospace Engineering, Technical University of Madrid and JPL Research Associate
Pavlo Rudakevych, Roboticist, Aerospace Engineer, Aviator
Markus Scheucher, Physics and Space Sciences, Karl Franzens University of Graz

Special Thanks

Dr. Ron Turner, ANSER Distinguished Analyst
Lawrence W. Townsend PhD, Chancellor's Professor of Nuclear Engineering, University of Tennessee