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Mining Technology for Lunar Resource Utilization.

Siekmeier JA; Podnieks ER
NTIS: PB 91-201020 Available for Reference At Bureau Libraries :62 pages
This report focuses primarily on surface mining since surface mining is expected to precede any underground mining conducted on the moon. The report outlines some of the basic issues that must be considered when designing a lunar mining system. It also proposes a surface mining scenario emphasizing teleoperated and automated mobile equipment. Equipment flexibility and synergism are considered paramount to allow the equipment to mine a variety of resource deposits as well as enable the mining equipment to be utilized as supportive construction equipment. The surface mining scenario involves the following operations: erecting prefabricated structures at the processing site, excavating regolith from an open pit, transporting and beneficiating the mined materials, extracting oxygen and hydrogen, and disposing of tailings. The lunar atmosphere and ground conditions contrast sharply with the terrestrial environment. These effects must be included in every design consideration related to lunar mining since most, if not all, of the engineering parameters used in mine design will be affected by the moon's environment. The U.S. Bureau of Mines proposes that lunar mining begin on the surface but evolve rapidly into a combined surface and underground operation.
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NTIS: PB 91-201020; Available for Reference At Bureau Libraries
Page last reviewed: October 8, 2021
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division