This month in JBIS: June 2020

Precursors to Space Habitats: from Biosphere 2 to the ISS by Stephen Baxter: This paper looks at isolated habitats such as the International Space Station, Antarctic stations and Biosphere 2, as well as previous space colony studies, and concludes that energy requirements and the complexity of a “closed-loop” life support system may have been previously underestimated.

Avalon’s Semi-Closed Environmental Control and Life Support System (ECLSS) Part I
crops for food and soil productions by Richard Soilleux: A semi-closed ECLSS for the Avalon space colony is described, with both aquaponics and soil-based farming. Estimates are made of requirements and produce, and the eventual artificial ecosystem.

Avalon’s Semi-Closed Environmental Control and Life Support System (ECLSS) Part 2
ventilation for heat and water transport and management by Richard Soilleux & Stephen Gunn: This section describes the management and transport of heat and energy, with waste heat being rejected by means of external radiators, and continuous internal illumination for the colony.

Avalon’s Semi-Closed Environmental Control and Life Support System (ECLSS) Part 3
crops to extend the diet and produce wood, fiber and chemicals by Richard Soilleux: A fully closed ecosystem will not be possible for the Avalon colony; however, if replacement nutrients can be imported sufficiently cheaply, an enlarged range of foodstuffs and products such as wood, fibre and chemicals can be produced.

The Law of Extraterrestrial Resources by Adam Manning: Space colonies such as Avalon will need to utilise extra-terrestrial resources, raising the matter of legal implications. The laws governing such use will influence the profitability of, and investment in, space mining. The current state of the law is surveyed, to examine the question of whether it will help or hinder such exploitation.

Bibliography & Errata: Corrections to R.J. Soilleux and S.D. Gunn. “The Avalon Orbital
Settlement.” JBIS, Vol 72 No. 9/10, pp 302-331, 2019.


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