The moon poses harsh conditions including excessively cold 14-day nights in some locations. However, the South Pole of the moon receives sunlight 100% of the time in summer and 70% of the time in Winter. NASA is, therefore, seeking to land at the South Pole by 2024 under Artemis missions and deploy solar arrays to power landers, rovers, and other equipment in order to facilitate a sustainable presence on the moon. Artemis project also seeks to lay the groundwork for a crewed mission to the Mars. To meet the NASA needs for Artemis mission, the desired solar array system is required to cover a large surface area to maximize the capture of solar irradiance when the arrays are deployed 10 meters above the lunar terrain. Additionally, the design must be lightweight, capable of being redeployed and retracted with minimal human interaction, and can withstand lunar dust, radiation, and extreme temperatures. In the present study, a scale-down working model of the prototype (1:10th scale) is introduced with a particular emphasis on the mechanical mechanisms of telescopic boom, tower, and deployment/retraction of solar arrays. The solar arrays are encased in a cylinder that sits atop the telescopic boom and can be deployed irrespective of the boom height. This study attempts to use principles of Geometric Origami to create a novel structural design that allows for a large-diameter array to be rigid without a supporting skeletal structure. By removing the rigid supporting structure, the design becomes highly portable and easily packable and deployable. Once the design is finalized, Fusion360’s Generative Design Suite will be used to optimize the strength-to-weight ratio and manufacturability. Conducting topology optimization based on finite element modeling to meet the required criteria on the weight, strength, durability, and rigidity leads often to irregular geometries which are not possible to be fabricated using conventional manufacturing. However, additive manufacturing features the ability to develop and fabricate the proposed innovative design.

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