A stowage system was conceived that consists of collapsible, reconfigurable stowage bags, rigid polyethylene or metal inserts, stainless-steel hooks, flexible photovoltaic materials, and webbing curtains that provide power generation, thermal stabilization, impact resistance, work/sleeping surfaces, and radiation protection to spaceflight hardware and crewmembers.

Providing materials to the Lunar surface is costly from both a mass and a volume standpoint. Most of the materials that will be transferred to other planets or celestial bodies will not be returned to the Earth. In developing a plan to reconfigure pressurized logistics modules, it was determined that there was a requirement to be able to utilize the interior volume of these modules and transform them from “Logistics Modules” to “Storage/Living Quarters.”

Logistics-to-living must re-utilize stowage bags and the structures that support them to construct living spaces, partitions, furniture, protective shelters from solar particle events, galactic cosmic radiation, and workspaces. In addition to reusing these logistics items for development of the interior living spaces, these items could also be reused outside the habitable volumes to build berms that protect assets from secondary blast ejecta, to define pathways, to stabilize high traffic areas, to protect against dust contamination, to secure assets to mobility elements, to provide thermal protection, and to create other types of protective shelters for surface experiments.

Unique features of

this innovation include hydrogen-impregnated nano-fibers encapsulated in a polyethelyne coating that act as radiation shielding, flexible solar collection cells that can be connected together with cells from other bags via the webbing walls to create a solar array, and the ability to reconfigure each bag to satisfy multiple needs.

This work was done by Kriss J. Kennedy, Larry David Toups, and Robert L. Howard of Johnson Space Center; Alan S. Howe of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory; and Jason Eric Poffenberger of Wyle Laboratories. MSC-24624-1

NASA Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the November, 2012 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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