AT HOME IN SPACE

Prototypes for accommodation in pace is constantly evolving. The latest is SHEE which combines technology and good design to create a habitable pod that can withstand the extreme environment in space.

Moonwalk, Riotinto, April 2016. Moonwalk, Rio Tinto analogue Site. A simulation to develop and test technologies and training procedures for future human missions to Moon or Mars. Consortium: DEUTSCHES FORSCHUNGSZENTRUM FUER KUENSTLICHE INTELLIGENZ (DFKI) GMBH COMPAGNIE MARITIME D’EXPERTISES SA (COMEX) AIRBUS GROUP (AG-I) LIQUIFER SYSTEMS GROUP (LSG) GMBH SPACE APPLICATIONS SERVICES N.V. (SPACE) NTNU SAMFUNNSFORSKING AS (NTNU) CENTRE FOR INTERDISCIPLINARY RESEARCH IN SPACE (CIRIS) INSTITUTO NACIONAL DE TÉCNICA AEROESPACIAL CENTRO DE ASTROBIOLOGIA (INTA- CAB)

The Self-Deployable Habitat for Extreme Environments (SHEE) is a transportable habitat testbed demonstrating technology for human habitation in hostile environments both on Earth and in space. SHEE is autonomously deployable, requiring no human interaction in setup. Each SHEE module provides support for two crew members for a mission of at least two weeks in duration.

Multiple SHEE modules can be linked together to build a “SHEE village” permitting the expansion of crew size, length of the mission or programmatic capabilities of the base. SHEE represents three years of research and development work by seven European companies and institutions and was funded under the European Commission Framework 7 Programme.

As of January 2016, SHEE has been declared functionally complete and is available for use by scientists and engineers in analogue missions. In April 2016, SHEE participated in its first analogue mission scenario in Rio Tinto, Spain as part of the MOONWALK, FP-7 project.

From the beginning the SHEE prototype has only been seen as the first step in a larger production programme. For missions requiring more than two occupants, multiple SHEE units could be built and linked together to form a “SHEE village.”

Structurally, the design of SHEE is a loadbearing monohull structure with six deployable compartments (referred to as petals). The manufacturing method, as well as the materials, used to construct the structural components are similar to those used in the boating and yachting industries for composite hulls.

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