German Firm Designs AM Moon Bike
3 mins read

German Firm Designs AM Moon Bike


Dresden-based bike firm Hookie has not too long ago revealed an idea for a Moon bike, which options 3D printed polymer wheels.

The bike is known as Tardigrade, after the small creature famed for its means to outlive the laborious vacuum and radiation atmosphere of house.

In keeping with the Hookie web site, the bike was named as such as a result of “Tardigrades are true survivors who’ve additionally endured the trials of outer house.”, and we guess the bike can do the identical.

And that is what it appears to be like like:

moon bike hookie
The Tardigrade bike (Picture credit score: Hookie)

The bike is absolutely electrical, clearly, since you’d have issue operating an inner combustion engine on the Moon, with the dearth of oxygen (and gasoline stations) and whatnot.

By way of different stats, the idea bike measures 2.6 metres in size, has a variety of 110km, a high pace of 15km/h and a weight of 134kg.

This makes it lighter than the earlier Moon Buggy (which had a mass of 210kg), which was delivered to the Moon’s floor on the Apollo 15.

moon buggy
The O.G Moon Buggy (Picture credit score: NASA)

In fact, the Moon Buggy (formally named because the Lunar Roving Unit) was designed for 2 individuals, whereas the Tardigrade bike seems to be designed for a single occupant.

One would guess that the bike is less expensive additionally, as the unique Moon Buggy is the costliest automotive ever constructed, coming in at an eye-watering $38 million in growth prices . It was initially slated at 19 million however house tasks are usually not low cost and value overruns finally bumped the worth up fairly a bit.

The airless tyres are printed with polyurethane and every wheel includes 12 printed segments that are assembled collectively to type the tyre, as you possibly can see within the picture under.

airless
Plastic tyre segments (Picture credit score: Hookie)

One wonders if polyurethane is the only option for this software, as polyurethane tends to degrade in UV and even seen mild. Polyurethane additionally is available in thermoset and thermoplastic variations. Given how scorching the lunar floor will get generally (as much as 130 levels celsius) , one hopes they opted for the thermoset plastic moderately than the thermoplastic with its low melting level.

Whereas the corporate has not printed specific particulars of the kind of printing that they used for growth of the Tardigrade tyres, they point out that they’ve partnered with German firm Additive Parts, who specialize in binder jetting printers, so it’s attainable that they’ve employed this technique on their house bike.

Further AM elements on the bike idea embody the handlebar mount and the wheel caps.

The majority of the bike’s construction is manufactured from laser minimize aluminium and metal tubing.

You possibly can see the Tardigrade idea in motion within the rendered video under.

And if you’re within the states, you then would possibly nonetheless catch the bike in actual life which is on show on the world well-known Petersen Automotive Museum which followers of Jay Leno’s Storage could recognise.

Will probably be on show on the Petersen till March 2022.

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