To be exact, people's goal is to use Martian soil.
the concept of 3D printing has been very popular these years, and 3D printers print things in a variety of ways: plastic is probably the most common, and some can print metal, glass, chocolate, and even living cells.
recently, a new material has been added to 3D printing. Look at the wrenches and building blocks below. How does it feel?
feels about. A little corny? In fact, these things are really printed out of soil.
of course, it's not enough to use soil alone. In order to maintain the shape and make the printed parts really work, appropriate materials are needed to bring those tiny "dust" particles together.
Why do scientists have to make things out of soil when there are so many off-the-shelf materials? In fact, this is an idea for exploring Mars in the future.
there are all kinds of materials on earth, all of which are easy to use, but after going to Mars, there is nothing on it but soil and rock. After waiting for people to go up, they always need to make all kinds of things, and if all the materials are shipped from the earth, the cost is too high. So, think of ways to use local materials.
so the researchers studied how to use soil to do 3D printing. They are now experimenting with simulations of lunar and Martian soil, which can be used for printing by mixing them with other raw materials. Although additional solvents and polymers are still needed to make these earth wrenches and blocks, there is expected to be a lot less material to be transported into space.
in the parts they make, the proportion of soil can reach more than 90%-that is, as long as 10% of the materials are transported, 100% of the parts can be made.
the process of printing is as follows, which looks a bit like chocolate:
it is said that the printed thing is a bit similar to rubber, elastic and flexible.
original paper is here:
cool scientific PS: in order to use local materials on Mars, people have also imagined a lot of methods. Today, I also saw another paper, which is an attempt to directly press the simulation of Martian soil into bricks. Used as building materials.
also read an article on sciencefriday that scientists also envisioned using ropes made of basalt fibers when exploring Mars. Like fiberglass, basalt can be pulled into slender fibers and woven into ropes and the like after melting. Only one raw material is needed to make this kind of rope, that is, the right basalt, so that it can be used directly on Mars.
it is not easy to build on Mars, where materials are scarce. Maybe after a while, humans will be able to move bricks happily on Mars.
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