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Building the Lunar Electrical Grid to Kickstart Lunar Permanence

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Thursday, December 8, 2022, 4 pm

This is a past event.

ME-EM Graduate Seminar Speaker Series

proudly presents

Hunter Williams

Honeybee Robotics


The key challenges to sustained human presence and in situ resource utilization (ISRU) activities on the Moon are mass, dust, and power. With sufficient power, surviving lunar night and working in the permanently shadowed regions are feasible. Solar power is an enabling resource anywhere at the Lunar surface, and a solar powered micro grid at the Lunar poles would be useful to mission planners, scientists, engineers, and astronauts. Lunar permanence starts with steadily available power. Honeybee Robotics (HBR) and mPower are developing the Lunar Array Mast and Power System (LAMPS) to provide such power for the first time. Honeybee is leveraging its long history of robust drilling technology in various subsystems to create a power system that can survive in the extremely harsh Lunar environment. This lightweight and relocatable robotic system combines key technologies for solar power generation, dust tolerant connection points, zero maintenance actuation, compact deployment, and autonomous operation. LAMPS is a deployable solar panel system allowing operation 8 meters above the ground with solar panels extending another 10 meters. LAMPS, in its current architecture, is designed to provide 10 kW of electrical power, assuming various system level and solar array inefficiencies. This extended height, deployed at certain locations on the Lunar surface, will allow LAMPS to operate with a drastically reduced period in darkness, of around 5 Earth days or less. The key LAMPS design elements include:


  • Stowable lightweight solar panels based on mPower’s lightweight DragonSCALES cells
  • Solar panels deployment based on TRIDENT drill cable-pulley architecture
  • Redeployable mast based on DIABLO (a helical band actuator)
  • Redeployable umbilical cable
  • HBR actuators for deployment, leveling and solar tracking
  • Dust tolerant electrical connectors
  • Thermal control system
  • Power storage and battery management
  • Avionics and communications based on Dragonfly avionics
  • Autoleveling based on HBR robotic systems


Hunter will discuss the design of LAMPS, its infusion into Honeybee’s Lunar grid plan, and the future of space resource utilization made possible through permanent Lunar power.

Lunar Array Mast and Power System on a simulated lunar surface.


Hunter Williams is the Technology Development Manager for Honeybee Robotics Exploration Systems Division. Hunter serves as PI for the Lunar Array, Mast, and Power System (LAMPS) and the Honey Bubbler Excitation Experiment (H-BEE) programs. Hunter has designed payloads for science missions across the solar system. He has built and tested pneumatic sampling systems for use on the moons of Mars and regolith melting technology for electrolysis plants the Moon. Before coming to Honeybee Hunter was a NASA research fellow at Colorado School of Mines developing non-traditional mining and resource extraction techniques on airless bodies.

Invited by: Paul van Susante

Additional Details


  • Mayli Hurin
  • Travis Wavrunek

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