top of page
FOR SPACEX'S STARSHIP ROCKET
"Design an 8-person crew ascent module for the SpaceX Starship to lift-off from Mars and embark on an 18 hour to 1 week mission to rendezvous with a return spacecraft en route to Earth."
Nominal trip duration: ~18 hours
Anomalous trip duration: < 1 week
Cade S. - Overall Design, CAD, Construction
Mason M. - Overall Design, CAD, Construction
Dylan F. - Overall Design, Hand Drawing, Construction
Felix A. - Machine aided Construction, Research
Jack Y. - Computer Rendering, Part Design
Phil Z. - Presentation, Illustrator
Yechen Z. - Part Design
Phase 1: (Complete)
Identify scope of prompt / ideate
Experiment full scale in cardboard
Present initial design to NASA
Phase 2: (Complete)
Develop final design with NASA feedback
Render entire module in CAD
Build full scale high fidelity final model
Present final design to NASA
Phase 1: Process Outtakes
Phase 1: Refined Sketches
Besides design and construction, my area of focus within the team was hand sketching.
Working in tandem with the CAD team, I sketched refined concepts and designs to give the computer renders added detail and context.
Phase 1: CAD Renderings
Phase 1: NASA Presentation
Our team had a 30 minute zoom meeting with 3 specialists at NASA to have our design evaluated.
Key Feedback Received:
Excessive unused space above seating area
Toilet design is too excessive for an emergency toilet
Also must accommodate both sexes
Increase storage capacity within cabin
Increase variety of storable cargo
Climate controlled scientific samples
Clothes, food, water, etc
Further minimize size of module
Moved storage and auxiliary systems above the seating area
Shortened module height
Added Minus 80 Degree Freezer
Redesigned the Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC)
Minus 80 Degree Freezer
I designed the freezer based on the unit installed in the International Space Station (ISS)
A retracting internal housing brings stored items in and out of the freezer safely and easily
Items are stored in cartridges which fit together in the housing
Cut using a CNC machine
Confirmed size and fit
Size range spans 4'11" to 6'4"
Revised Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC)
Housed in the central floor cavity
- Completely stowable to maximize cavity function and space
Phase 2: Full-Scale Build
Phase 2: Final NASA Powerpoint
Phase 2: Final NASA Presentation
Specialists at NASA, including a RISD ID alum who also attended this class called in from Houston. Dr. Robert Howard (laying in our module) is the Habitability Domain Lead in the Habitability and Human Factors Branch and the Co-Lead of the Center for Design and Space Architecture at Johnson Space Center in Houston, TX. He flew in from Houston to attend our critique in-person.
This critique lasted 1 hour and our refreshed design proved to be a major improvement over our initial design presented at our first critique.
Our professor Michael sitting on the module and me standing on top.
This was a project assigned in my Junior year spring semester Industrial Design Design for Extreme Environments Special Topics class funded by NASA through the Rhode Island Space Grant and taught by Prof. Michael Lye.
bottom of page