Submission Title

Geotechnical Analysis of a Martian Soil Simulant JSC MARS-1

Session Number

PS1

Location

Graves Gym

Abstract Number

PS1-r

Abstract

We tested a Martian soil simulant (MSS) for geotechnical properties. Both NASA and Mars One plan manned missions to Mars in coming decades. This necessitates an understanding of soil characteristics for construction as well as stability of transported habitats. MSS is classified as a non-plastic silt by the Unified Soil Classification System. The California Bearing Ratio (ASTM D1883-14) test reveals the suitability of soil for use in roads, runways, and landing pads. The CBR test gave a result of 5.6% at optimal water content and 8.4% when dry. Unconfined compressive strength (ASTM D2166-85) testing allows identification of yield strength and ultimate strength of soil for supporting a structural load. The ultimate strength of MSS near optimal water content is 3000 psf and 2300 psf when dry. Understanding the impacts of reduced water and gravity on soil behavior is an important part of Mars mission planning.

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Apr 23rd, 10:45 AM Apr 23rd, 12:15 PM

Geotechnical Analysis of a Martian Soil Simulant JSC MARS-1

Graves Gym

We tested a Martian soil simulant (MSS) for geotechnical properties. Both NASA and Mars One plan manned missions to Mars in coming decades. This necessitates an understanding of soil characteristics for construction as well as stability of transported habitats. MSS is classified as a non-plastic silt by the Unified Soil Classification System. The California Bearing Ratio (ASTM D1883-14) test reveals the suitability of soil for use in roads, runways, and landing pads. The CBR test gave a result of 5.6% at optimal water content and 8.4% when dry. Unconfined compressive strength (ASTM D2166-85) testing allows identification of yield strength and ultimate strength of soil for supporting a structural load. The ultimate strength of MSS near optimal water content is 3000 psf and 2300 psf when dry. Understanding the impacts of reduced water and gravity on soil behavior is an important part of Mars mission planning.