A sortie mission to Schrödinger Basin as reconnaissance for future exploration

Melissa K. Bunte, Simon Porter, Mark Robinson

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The Schrödinger impact basin near the southern pole on the lunar farside (134°E, 75°S) is a young multiring impact basin, and it is well preserved and exposed for scientifi c study. A crewed sortie-reconnaissance mission to Schrödinger Basin would allow (1) collection of samples in order to obtain an absolute age date for the Schrödinger impact event and to constrain the ages of volcanic events, (2) detailed analysis of pyroclastic materials that mantle the basin's impact melt sheet, (3) study of lunar explosive volcanism mechanics, and (4) installation of a passive seismic array for study of interior activity. The region's diversity of geologic materials and features make it a prime target for human and robotic exploration. A landing site located within the pyroclastic deposit (139.6°E, 75.7°S) allows access to the volcanic vent and inner ring of the basin. Sampling the inner ring, which may be composed of South Pole-Aitken Basin uplift material, would allow absolute dating of the South Pole-Aitken Basin event. Engineering objectives necessary for extending surface stay time for sortie missions or a lunar outpost can be met at this locale. Pyroclastic material is optimal for in situ oxygen production. Demonstrating oxygen production and storage at the landing site would prove technologies for an outpost and leave a cache of consumables for use by future longerterm expeditions. Mission planning is based on Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, Lunar Orbiter, Clementine, and SELENE mission data. Extravehicular activities necessary for completing the science objectives require long traverses (24 km and 7.5 h per traverse) for a four-member crew over a 4 d mission.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSpecial Paper of the Geological Society of America
Pages533-546
Number of pages14
Volume483
DOIs
StatePublished - 2011

Publication series

NameSpecial Paper of the Geological Society of America
Volume483
ISSN (Print)00721077

Fingerprint

basin
explosive volcanism
oxygen
pyroclastic deposit
robotics
mechanics
uplift
melt
mantle
engineering
material
sampling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geology

Cite this

Bunte, M. K., Porter, S., & Robinson, M. (2011). A sortie mission to Schrödinger Basin as reconnaissance for future exploration. In Special Paper of the Geological Society of America (Vol. 483, pp. 533-546). (Special Paper of the Geological Society of America; Vol. 483). https://doi.org/10.1130/2011.2483(32)

A sortie mission to Schrödinger Basin as reconnaissance for future exploration. / Bunte, Melissa K.; Porter, Simon; Robinson, Mark.

Special Paper of the Geological Society of America. Vol. 483 2011. p. 533-546 (Special Paper of the Geological Society of America; Vol. 483).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Bunte, MK, Porter, S & Robinson, M 2011, A sortie mission to Schrödinger Basin as reconnaissance for future exploration. in Special Paper of the Geological Society of America. vol. 483, Special Paper of the Geological Society of America, vol. 483, pp. 533-546. https://doi.org/10.1130/2011.2483(32)
Bunte MK, Porter S, Robinson M. A sortie mission to Schrödinger Basin as reconnaissance for future exploration. In Special Paper of the Geological Society of America. Vol. 483. 2011. p. 533-546. (Special Paper of the Geological Society of America). https://doi.org/10.1130/2011.2483(32)
Bunte, Melissa K. ; Porter, Simon ; Robinson, Mark. / A sortie mission to Schrödinger Basin as reconnaissance for future exploration. Special Paper of the Geological Society of America. Vol. 483 2011. pp. 533-546 (Special Paper of the Geological Society of America).
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