[PPS04-P06] Development of lunar regolith simulants based on previous lunar explorations
Keywords:lunar simulant, regolith material, In-Situ Resource Utilization, Apollo Programs
In this study, we collected several types of igneous rock and test the accuracy of rock type and texture to use for simulants. Then we revisited Apollo sample data and decided the most favorable ranges of particle size distribution, chemical composition, mineral assemblage, particle shape and texture of our simulant, and established manufacturing procedure.
We finally developed four different types of lunar simulants: mare simulant of the lunar near side, highland simulant of the lunar near side, the South Pole Aitken (SPA) basin simulant, and highland simulants of lunar far-side were prepared by the above procedure using an analysis technique such as XRF. Unlike the existing simulants (e.g., JSC-1), the simulant produced in this study are within the constraints of elemental/chemical compositions of Apollo samples and remote-sensing data, and they show a wide range of validity for modeling the surface of each site, in terms of particle size-frequency distribution, mineral abundance and the chemical composition, which would lead to precise estimates of the surface conditions of future landing sites.
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