This name belongs to one of the Moon goddess. This in particular was chosen due to the link with night and darkness, creating a link with the kind of spots our mission will take place in.
The Moon is always been a target for human exploration and it has recently started to generate interest again, thanks to the deeper understaing of its soil and the technological possibilities to investigate and esploit it better. Among the aims of our mission there are:
- Investigating Lunar Water: thanks to Chandrayaan-1 mapping, it's been possible to spot water ice on the moon. One of our aim is to amplify the knowledge related to this phenomenon. This could lead to relevant discoveries which would be useful under different aspects, even to future astronauts that are going to stay on the Moon.
- Understanding Lunar Soil: the lunar composition has already been studied during the previous years, however not in particular spots such as those we have chosen. In this dark places the influence of dramatically low temperatures and water ice precence, together with the older aged soil may have influenced terrain properties. In order to have a better comprehension of it, we believe is necessary to research both the surface and the underground.
Our mission has been developed by paying attention to some details that could be catastrophic in the event they occur. We also took care of some aspects that nowadays are faced in different fields of study, such as energy autonomy, thermal protections and position measurments. All of this has been done without forgetting about the main goals of the mission, for which a set of useful sensors and experiments has been taken in consideration.
At the end of the day we decided to plan a peculiar mission, which can exploit the terrain around it in a fast and optimized way by researching through different technologies; the results of these researches can be linked to provide a unique experimental experience.
The main characters of the Hekate mission are:
- Collector: is a lightweight (if compared to those around the solar system) rover which has the purpose of collecting lunar soil and water surface samples and bringing them to the Hub to be analyzed. It can cover up to 5 Km forth and back in order to analyse a wide variety of samples.
- Digger: differently from its smaller brother it prefers to stay closer to home. It can cover between 1 and 2 Km, but (and here comes the difference) it's equipped with a drill and a sensor for deep samples collection (around 2 to 4 m).
- Hub: is the main center of the mission. It's provided with a wide variety of sensors and technologies useful to test and analyze whatever is taken to it. It also has the task to communicate with the orbiter to send data to Earth. It's equipped with an RTG in order to grant the required power to itself and to recharge the rovers when they bring samples.
- Sentinels: last but not least. These are two directional antennas that will be placed next to the Hub in order to grant a precise position recognition of the rovers (which already have an inertial system equipped) and wil be used especially for short range movements.
More can be found on the following link: https://github.com/salvatoreab/Hekate.git