Roads on the moon using lasers

It sounds like science fiction. But evidence on Earth supports the theory. It is possible to build roads on the moon using lasers. Even landing strips could be prepared. The lunar soil would be melted into a more solid, stratified substance.

It is the conclusion of a proof-of-concept study published in the journal ‘Scientific Reports’. The experiments were carried out on Earth with a substitute for lunar dust. The results demonstrate the viability of the technique and suggest that it could be reproduced on the Moon.

Roads can be built on the moon using lasers.
Roads can be built on the moon using lasers.

Melting the dust

Lunar dust poses a significant challenge for lunar rovers. Due to low levels of gravity, it tends to float when disturbed and can damage equipment. Infrastructure such as roads and landing strips will be essential to mitigate dust problems on the Moon.

Transporting construction materials from Earth is expensive. It will be essential to use the resources available on the Moon. Researchers at Aalen University (Germany) melted a fine-grained material called EAC-1. It was developed as a substitute for lunar soil. They used a carbon dioxide laser to simulate how lunar dust can be melted by focused solar radiation on the Moon. Thus it could become a solid substance.

The authors experimented with laser beams of different powers and sizes to create a robust material. But they found that crossing or overlapping the path of the laser beam caused cracks.


They developed a strategy that used a laser beam 45 millimeters in diameter. He produced triangular, hollow and centered geometric shapes, about 250 millimeters in size. The authors suggest that these shapes could interlock to create a solid surface over large areas of lunar soil. They would be used as roads and landing platforms.

So how to build roads on the moon using lasers with this method? It is necessary to transport a lens of about 2.37 square meters from Earth that will act as a concentrator of sunlight instead of the laser. Its relatively small size for the equipment needed would be an advantage in future missions to the Moon.

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