ICON 3D-Printed Rocket Pad
NASA’s Artemis Generation program challenges students to help solve problems, and this proposal from ten U.S. colleges and universities has created the world’s first 3D printed rocket pad for lunar missions. This innovative reusable prototype rocket landing and launch pad, called Lunar PAD, was 3D printed using a cement-based material extruded from ICON’s gantry print system at a Texas Military Department location in Camp Swift. Read more for a video and additional information.

The launch / landing pad used during the Apollo missions resulted in large dust clouds caused by powerful Saturn V rocket engine exhaust, thus greatly reducing visibility, but the Lunar PAD features a series of petal-like channels to solve this issue. That’s right, the exhaust is sent upward and outward simultaneously, trapping dust and minimizing clouds from the force of the rocket engines.

LEGO Ideas NASA Apollo Saturn V 92176 Outer Space Model Rocket for Kids and Adults, Science Building Kit (1969 Pieces)
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LEGO Ideas NASA Apollo Saturn V 92176 Outer Space Model Rocket for Kids and Adults, Science Building Kit (1969 Pieces)
  • Bring to life the rocket launch that took humans to the moon with the meter-high (approximately 1: 110 scale) model rocket of the NASA Apollo Saturn V
  • The Saturn V rocket kit includes 3 removable rocket stages (first, s-ii second, and s-ivb third) below the launch escape system, command and service module; Plus, there are 2 minifigures to accompany the Lunar Lander and splashdown rocket toy
  • After building the Saturn V rocket, you can display the spacecraft horizontally with 3 stands; The Lunar Lander docks with the command and service modules while the Lunar Orbiter sends the rocket into space
  • Recreate space adventures with this NASA toy and action figures based off of the included booklet about the manned Apollo Moon missions and the fan designers of this build and play set
  • This spaceship toy measures over 39-inches (100cm) high and 6-inches (17cm) in diameter; It includes 1,969 pieces and is ideal for boys and girls 14 years or older

The proposal addressed a technology pain point, as the project enables a safe and reusable landing pad required for sustainable lunar exploration. The team worked many hundreds of hours, engaged NASA subject matter experts, and went from concept formulation to a preliminary design. They then turned that design into reality with the sub-scale construction, all in a few short months,” said John Dankanich, Marshall Space Flight Center Chief.