El Estudio de Arquitectura de Sir Norman Foster, junto a la Agencia Espacial Europea, proyectan estructuras mediante impresión 3D (robot) para colonizar la Luna, desarrollando la construcción de habitáculos lunares (tipo “domo”), que aprovechan el regolito de la superficie como material principal.
Foster + Partners is part of a consortium set up by the ESAto explore the possibilities of 3D printing to construct lunar habitations. Addressing the challenges of transporting materials to the moon, the study is investigating the use of lunar soil, known as regolith, as building matter.
The practice has designed a lunar base to house four people, which can offer protection from meteorites, gamma radiation and high temperature fluctuations. The base is first unfolded from a tubular module that can be transported by space rocket. An inflatable dome then extends from one end of this cylinder to provide a support structure for construction. Layers of regolith are then built up over the dome by a robot-operated 3D printer to create a protective shell.
To ensure strength while keeping the amount of binding “ink” to a minimum, the shell is made up of a hollow closed cellular structure similar to foam. The geometry of the structure was designed by Foster + Partners in collaboration with consortium partners – it is groundbreaking in demonstrating the potential of 3D printing to create structures that are close to natural biological systems.
Simulated lunar soil has been used to create a 1.5 tonne mockup and 3D printing tests have been undertaken at a smaller scale in a vacuum chamber to echo lunar conditions. The planned site for the base is at the moon’s southern pole, where there is near perpetual sunlight on the horizon.
Moscow’s rapidly growing skyline will soon feature an eye-popping new addition: Crystal Island, which will be the world’s biggest building when completed. Sir Norman Foster’s mountainous 27 million square feet spiraling “city within a building” will cost $4 billion and it is scheduled to be built within next 5 years.
The statistics for the project are absolutely staggering; floor area alone will be four times the size of Pentagon in Washington DC. The incredible 1500 ft. tall multi use structure will feature 900 apartments, 3000 hotel rooms, an international school for 500 students, cinemas, a theater, sports complex and much more. There will also be a 16,500 space underground parking lot for all the visitors. The Crystal Island visitors will be able to enjoy panoramic views of Moscow on the viewing platforms located 980 ft. above ground.
Conceived as a city in microcosm, Crystal Island is an unprecedented, compact and diverse urban quarter. Situated on the Nagatino Peninsula, edged by the Moscow River, it is located only 7.5 km from the Kremlin. Rising from a large public square, the entire development is enclosed within a vast tent-like superstructure, with one of the tallest inhabited buildings in the world at its heart.
Crystal Island is a proposed building project in Moscow, Russia that is currently planned to have around 2,500,000 square metres (27,000,000 square feet) of floor space and a height of 450 metres (1,476 ft) designed by Norman Foster. At these dimensions upon completion it would be the largest structure (in floor space) on earth. The architectural firm behind the design is Foster and Partners.