NASA faced more than 50 years ago a problem during the first human landing on the moon, as the landing caused a haze of flying dust, which made landing operations troublesome, as large quantities of rock and debris were also produced during missile powered landings , NASA aims to return astronauts to the moon Again by 2024, what should you do about the dust problem?
According to the American “Space” website, scientists are trying to devise solutions that seem necessary if travel to the moon becomes routine, so they return to the root of the problem.
Memories of Apollo
Initially, there are many historical narratives related to the safe landing of humans on the moon, beginning with Apollo’s first landing on the moon, but Neil Armstrong, commander of the Apollo 11 lunar eagle unit, said, “At a distance less than 100 feet during the descent, we started to Obtaining a transparent layer of moving dust that obscured vision slightly, and as we approached more, visibility continued to decline. ”
As it happened in Apollo 12, Pete Conrad faced so much dust that he had a mild blindness when his final descent reached the surface.
He later narrated that “the dust was too much, obscuring everything that I could see in any direction and completely obliterating the pits and anything else, I couldn’t figure out what was underneath.”
Many of the landing leaders on the Apollo missions detected similar concerns.
How does NASA benefit from this?
NASA hopes to benefit from these lessons from the Apollo era for future lunar missions.
“The old details have to be restored, because those who forget the past are doomed to a similar landing,” said Sherold Epp, director of the Self-Landing and Risk Aversion Technology project at the NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston.
Ip added: “After looking at the Apollo landings, I came to two conclusions: first, these crew did a great job, and the second, the data from many landings supports the idea that we should give future astronauts more information to increase the probability of a successful landing of the mission “.
Ip said that if a lunar unit settled at an angle of more than 12 degrees, astronauts might not be able to remove themselves from the surface, saying, “If a crew lands on a hill, on a large rock, or in a crater, this could lead to a bad day.”
It is extremely difficult to perform a realistic ground test of the lunar environment, which would provide good data, said Michelle Monk, head of the entry, landing and landing systems division at NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia.
Missile exhaust physics may be the answer
“The moon is a low-gravity object without air, which makes the effects of the missile’s column completely different from what we’re testing on Earth,” said Philip Metzger, a planetary scientist at the University of Central Florida’s Florida Space Institute (UCF).
Metzger added, “On Earth, the rocks move to the farthest distance, while the dust stops at a short distance only because the atmosphere is dragged to the Earth.” On the contrary, in the moon the dust is moving faster and further.
Metzger said, the moon’s exhaust engine exhaust blows dust, soil, gravel and rocks at high speed and will damage surrounding devices such as lunar foci, mining operations or historical sites, unless the landing is properly mitigated.
Metzger said that during the past twenty years researchers have developed a consistent picture of the exhaust physics of rockets blowing on the moon, “but there are still some gaps,” adding, “The modeling method currently available cannot fully predict the effects, however, the basics are well understood.” Enough to start designing countermeasures to work on this and then overcome this crisis. ”