Solar Resources: Solar Energy

RADIATION SHIELDING:

The biggest challenge we would have, if we launch our settlement near Ganymede, is the Radiation. Just above the Earth’s atmosphere, there is some deadly radiation which may cause many problems for the human life nearby. To stop the radiation, we would create an artificial layer of shielding using the metals available in space and earth. We would also use the alloys which would be very useful. To mitigate this challenge there would be some deep space vehicles, which would have a significant protective shielding. The layers of the shield shall be uniformly proportionate for better protection. We shall provide our residents with the best radiation shelter to give them the protection and to save the mankind in space.

As we know Titanium absorbs the radiation very efficiently. We would use the alloy of Titanium and Aluminium and many more metals and alloys for constructing the radiation shelter. By using this element, it would make our settlement one of the best protected places for the survival of the mankind. We would use various shielding materials for building proper radiation shelter. By this the people would be confident to rely on our settlement. We would use the metals which would be of less weight and good strength, because, if we use metals of heavy weight, it would be very difficult for us to manage our settlement. The outermost layer, that is, the solar panels would be 20mm-30mm thick to act as an additional layer of radiation shielding to help us in giving more safety to our residents. The solar panels would have a protective layer of shield that would help us in protecting our residents from the deadly ultraviolet rays. We would have a thick layer of glass which would protect us from the deadly radiations like UV rays, proton and electron radiation. The materials which would be used are as follows: Shields used:

  1. Tungsten shield
  2. Lead shield
  3. Concrete shield
  4. Bismuth Shield
  5. Titanium shield

The tungsten shield is a good shielding material against the gamma and the X-rays. The X-rays and its mass is less than lead, but when it is of 0.5mm and 1mm, it is more than lead shielding. So we would use it with 0.5mm which is light and can deflect gamma and X-rays. It has a high tensile strength and has a melting point of 3422˚C. Lead shielding Lead shielding can be used to deflect gamma and X-rays just like tungsten but due to its high density and atomic number it can deflect more amount of radiation. It has a melting point of 372˚C which is the reason why we can’t use it in the first layer. Concrete shield This type of a shielding would not protect us from the radiation but is useful as it can reduce the amount of radiation passing through it. The metal is made of cement, water and heavy weight aggregates. The melting point of the concrete is 1300˚C. Bismuth shield It is also like concrete shield as it also reduces the radiation in all directions which is a very useful property. It can reduce any type of radiation. It reduces the radiation up to 15.5% but it has a very less melting point of 271˚C. Titanium shield It is a very light material but very strong. It can block the gamma rays, X-rays and electromagnetic rays which can cause problems for the human life. It is very light in weight but can deflect more radiation and has a melting point of 1668°C.

Layers of radiation shielding

Layer-A Concrete 0.5M Layer-B Titanium 1.5M Layers-C Tungsten 0.75M Layer-D Bismuth 1M Layer-E Lead 0.5M

Temperature management

The temperature in our settlement would be maintained by the technicians of NAYSHA who would control the thermal control system as per the needs of the residents. The thermal control system is very useful system which produces the heat in our settlement. As we know that Ganymede is very far from the sun and therefore it is very cold there. That is the reason we planned to keep the thermal control system to maintain the temperature as per the requirement of the residents. The temperature in our settlement would be controlled according to the season so that the people of NAYSHA would feel the comforts like the earth’s atmosphere. In this way the people can live a comfortable life in the space. The thermal control system would be powered by the solar energy. If the thermal control system is damaged or does not work properly or needs to be fixed then the in-built heater of NAYSHA would get to work.

The residents would not face any problem regarding the temperature in our settlement. Not only the heater would start to work automatically, but every citizen would be provided a body temperature suit which would help them maintain their body temperature until the thermal control system is repaired. We would provide the people of NAYSHA with an electrified thermal blanket which can keep them warm. These would be all the contingency plans if the thermal control system stops working. It is nearly -193˚C near Ganymede, so we need to produce the heat up to 30˚c in our settlement to keep the people of NAYSHA warm and alive. The energy used to produce the required temperature would be collected from the solar panels on the surface of our settlement. We can even use this thermal control system to melt the rocks or asteroids so that we can extract the ore from the minerals. The thermal control system uses the heat pipes, heater, thermal switches and louvers to transfer the heat to our settlement.

Thermal control system is very useful because it keeps the temperature of our settlement maintained and would prevent the parts of our settlement from getting damaged. The excess heat would be controlled by the thermal rejection and would send the excess heat to the place where the heat is required. This can be mainly used in the industrial section where the excess heat can be transferred from one place to another place so that the temperature in our settlement would be uniformly proportionate throughout our settlement. Asteroids As we all know that space is full of asteroids to overcome from such problems we are having an asteroid capturing system in which we are going to release a sphere from docking system. Then this sphere will divide into two hemispheres. The top hemisphere will divide into four equal parts. This parts will move over the asteroids carrying nets made with plasma ropes. These parts will join at the top of the asteroid as hemisphere. The bottom hemisphere would have strong laser to break the asteroid into pieces. The little amount of substance of an asteroid will sent to base camps for research. If it found useful we use it otherwise we will leave it away from our settlement. In this manner we are going to escape from asteroids.

Dimensions of sphere: Radius: 250m Area: 4πr2 = 4*3.14*(250)2 = 785000m2 Volume: 4/3*π*r3 = 4/3*3.14*(250)3 = 65400000m3

We are going to plasma rope nets of different size depends upon the size of asteroids. Asteroid capturing system:

Stage1: we are going to release a sphere from docking systems of NAYSHA in order to catch an asteroid.

Stage2: This sphere will divide into two equal parts and top part will again divide into four equal parts. These parts will move over the asteroid carrying nets made of plasma ropes (very strong ropes).

Stage3: These parts will join at the top after covering the asteroid with nets as same bottom part. Bottom part has a laser with breaks down the asteroid into simpler pieces.

Water

The most important requirement of humans is water. We planned to have our settlement near Ganymede which is a good resource of water. Ganymede consists of large amount of water under the crust which is made up of ice and is also very thick. The thickness of the crust of Ganymede is of 150 km. The thickness of water level is of 100 km. We would drill to get water from under the crust of Ganymede. But the water we get on Ganymede is saline water and cannot be used for any purpose. It should be purified before the usage. With the help of the robotic drillers we can drill the icy crust and get the water. The process of drilling the icy crust would be the best technique for extracting the water from Ganymede. These robotic drillers would drill the surface and extract the water from under the surface of Ganymede. As the water is salty, we would use the process of distillation for purification. This process would filter the salt water and transport the purified water from the base camps to our settlement. We planned to have the water resource near to our base camp so that it would be easy to transport the purified water from the base camps to our settlement. The water would be transported from the base camp of Naysha to our settlement and would be sent to the residents of NAYSHA through a pipeline. We also have another process for extracting the water and that is by melting the ice with the preserved solar energy. This process can be done by using the inflatable mirror. This mirror reflects the solar energy to a certain place and melts the icy crust and hence we can extract the water. After purifying the water it can be sent to the people of NAYSHA.

Solar resources

As we mentioned above, our location at Ganymede is challenging and would have many problems. One of them is generation of power. We require power for doing our daily activities and many other activities. For generating power we would use three methods:

  1. Solar Resources
  2. Nuclear fission
  3. Radioisotope thermoelectric generators 

Solar resources: We planned to have solar energy in our settlement for generating electricity. But we need more energy to run our settlement. To overcome this problem we have solar panels which would have the capacity to generate power from the sunlight. The power generated can be used for the domestic purposes in our settlement. But the sunlight would not reach our location always. It receives sunlight nearly 85.8 hours per day and a day on Ganymede is of 171 hours. We planned to use multi junction gallium arsenic solar panels on NAYSHA to generate power. It absorbs the sun light and would convert it into electricity. We planned to use it because of its efficiency of 28%.

Nuclear power plant: We planned to have a nuclear power plant to generate electricity in our settlement. As our location is far from the solar resources we would use a nuclear fission to generate electricity. It would help us in generating electricity. As we would have a base camp on mars, we would find abundant deposits of uranium on mars. So, we would get uranium from mars and use it in the power generation process of NAYSHA. How does nuclear power plant works? It works on the principle of nuclear fission where neutrons would collide with the atoms of uranium. As a result we would get a great amount of energy from this nuclear fission. This energy would be used for the conversion of water to steam. This steam would help the turbines to rotate and these turbines would be connected to the generators. Due to this rotation of turbines with steam, electricity is generated. Advantages of nuclear fission:

  1. Safe to generate electricity,
  2.  Pollution free,
  3. Low greenhouse gas emission,
  4. Powerful and efficient,
  5.  Reliable,
  6. Easy transportation.

We can produce nearly 4,689,440,000 kHz power per year in this power plant.

Plutonium dioxide radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTG): We planned to have radioisotope thermo electric generators for generating electricity in our settlement. We would use this method in emergency conditions. This would work with the help of plutonium. We can extract plutonium from the asteroids present in the asteroid belt and some plutonium would be produced as a byproduct of nuclear fission. How it works: It works on the principle of See beck effect where a ray of thermocouples would convert the energy of the heat released by the decay of plutonium into electrical energy. This would be connected to our generators. By this method we would generate electricity in our space settlement.

Advantages of RTG:

  1. Produces high energy radiation,
  2. Tendency to produce radiation decay heat,
  3. Long half-life for continuous energy,
  4. Produces large heat to mass ratio.