Space habitats and habitability

by Sandra Häuplik-Meusburger & Sheryl Bishop
ISBN 978-3-030-69740-2

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This book explores creative solutions to the unique challenges inherent in crafting livable spaces in extra-terrestrial environments. The goal is to foster a constructive dialogue between the researchers and planners of future (space) habitats. The authors explore the diverse concepts of the term Habitability from the perspectives of the inhabitants as well as the planners and social sciences.

The book provides an overview of the evolution and advancements of designed living spaces for manned space craft, as well as analogue research and simulation facilities in extreme environments on Earth. It highlights how various current and future concepts of Habitability have been translated into design and which ones are still missing. The main emphasis of this book is to identify the important factors that will provide for well-being in our future space environments and promote creative solutions to achieving living spaces where humans can thrive. Selected aspects are discussed from a socio-spatial professional background and possible applications are illustrated.

Human factors and habitability design are important topics for all working and living spaces. For space exploration, they are vital. While human factors and certain habitability issues have been integrated into the design process of manned spacecraft, there is a crucial need to move from mere survivability to factors that support thriving. As of today, the risk of an incompatible vehicle or habitat design has already been identified by NASA as recognized key risk to human health and performance in space. Habitability and human factors will become even more important determinants for the design of future long-term and commercial space facilities as larger and more diverse groups occupy off-earth habitats.

The book will not only benefit individuals and organizations responsible for manned space missions and mission simulators, but also provides relevant information to designers of terrestrial austere environments (e.g., remote operational and research facilities, hospitals, prisons, manufacturing). In addition it presents general insights on the socio-spatial relationship which is of interest to researchers of social sciences, engineers and architects.


Space Architecture Education for Engineers and Architects

Space Architecture Education for Engineers and Architects
Designing and Planning Beyond Earth
by Häuplik-Meusburger, Sandra, Bannova, Olga
ISBN: 978-3-319-19278-9, May 2016

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Space architecture as a discipline is relatively new, but it fills a gap between the engineering approach to design habitats and other space facilities for humans, and the complexity of human factors oriented design—including personal psychology, creativity, and non-work related activities. In order to successfully fill that gap, space architecture needs to be taught academically.
The book is structured around basic learning processes for the design of a space mission, structure or vehicle. The chapters on the design principles are related to the Technology Readiness levels and Habitation Readiness Levels – TRLs and HRLs and include examples, discussions, and tasks.

with Guest Chapters (in order of appearance):
Chris Welch on ‘The Essence of Interdisciplinarity’
Brand N. Griffin on ‘The Role of the Space Architect’
Brent Sherwood on ‘Space Architecture Education—Site, Program, and Meaning’
Marc M. Cohen on ‘Mockups 101: Technology Readiness Levels for Mockups and Simulators’
Madhu Thangavelu on ‘The Moon or Mars: Where might we settle first?’
Theodore W. Hall on ‘Artificial Gravity and Implications for Space Architecture’
Cesare Lobascio on ‘Environmental Control and Life Support Systems’
Haym Bennaroya and Leonard Bernold on ‘Engineering and Construction of LunarBases’
Kriss J. Kennedy on ‘The TransHab Project’



Architecture for Astronauts – an Activity Based Approach

Author: Sandra Häuplik-Meusburger

SpringerPraxis Books, Springer WienNewYork, ISBN: 978-3-7091-0666-2; 316 p.

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Evaluation of extra-terrestrial habitats from a human activity point of view: The Apollo Spacecraft and Lunar Module, the Space Shuttle Orbiter, and the Space Stations; Salyut, Skylab, Mir, as well as the International Space Station. It provides an overview of the architecture and configuration, highlights specific issues concerning the interior layout and compares the spatial and time allocation of human activities. The main part of the book concentrates on the investigation of the relationship between the environment and its users. This method evaluates and summarizes all the selected habitats by means of the human activities in relation to the characteristics of the built environment. In addition to analyzing the available data, it integrates the astronauts‘ personal experiences into the evaluation. Design directions for each category conclude each chapter.

Erstmals sind wichtige Entwicklungen und Forschungsgergebnisse zu ‚Weltraum-Architektur‘  übersichtlich und grafisch aufgearbeitet in einem Buch zusammengefasst. Das Buch dient sowohl als Nachschlagewerk und Evaluierungsleitfaden als auch als Inspirationsquelle für Architekten, Designer und Ingenieure.

contributions to other books

Werden wir auf dem Mars leben? 33 Fragen an die Zukunft

33 Fragen an die Zukunft
Mit Illustrationen von Barbara Baumann
Führende Wissenschaftler beantworten brennende Zukunftsfragen

Ob wir bald auf dem Mars leben werden, ist es eine der Zukunftsfragen, die die Menschheit seit Jahrzehnten beschäftigt. Bei Weitem nicht die einzige: Vielleicht werden uns Roboter schon bald sämtliche Arbeit im Haushalt ­abnehmen? Was werden wir dann in unserer Freizeit tun? […] Diese und andere Fragen über unseren Alltag, unsere Gesellschaft und Umwelt werden von prominenten WissenschaftlerInnen beantwortet. Ausgehend von ihren jeweiligen Forschungsperspektiven geben sie Einblicke in die Welt von morgen.

Häuplik-Meusburger, 2017,
Wird des Hotels im Weltraum geben?, in: Werden wir auf dem Mars leben? 33 Fragen an die Zukunft, Führende Wissenschafter beantworten brennende Zukunftsfragen, M. Kafka, P. Pennerstorfer (Ed.), Brandstätter Verlag, p. 145 – 147.


contributions to other books

Young Viennese Architects and Landscape Architects. YoVA4

Häuplik-Meusburger, V. Holzgethan, 2015,
space-craft Architektur; in: Junge Wiener Architekten und Landschaftsarchitekten. Young Viennese Architects and Landscape Architects. YoVA4, issued by: Magistrat der Stadt Wien MA 18; Birkhäuser Verlag, Wien, ISBN: 3035606358, p. 88 – 95.


Zum vierten Mal startete 2014 die Stadt Wien ihre Initiative „Yo.V.A. – Young Viennese Architects“. Die eingelangten Projekte wurden einer Kommission zur Auswahl vorgelegt. Die Auswahlkommission setzte sich aus Vertreterinnen und Vertretern von Stadt Wien, Kammer der Architekten und Ingenieurkonsulenten, ig-architektur – Verein Interessensgemeinschaft Architekturschaffender, ÖGFA und ÖGLA zusammen. Im November 2014 wurde space-craft Architektur als eines von elf jungen Wiener Architektur- und Landschaftsarchitekturbüros zur Teilnahme ausgewählt.

contributions to other books


Authors: Sandra Häuplik-Meusburger and Kursad Özdemir

Editor: Viorel Badescu, Springer Berlin Heidelberg, ISBN: 978-3643379683

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This chapter presents a selection of historic and recent design studies and projects for deployable lunar habitation. It begins with milestones in the history of deployable structure design leading to deployable structures that were built and used. The main part outlines design studies, wherein the design objective, the structural and deployment concept are summarized, and habitability aspects are highlighted.


contributions to other books

Astronauts Orbiting On Their Stomachs

Astronauts Orbiting On Their Stomachs: The Need To Design For The Consumption And Production Of Food
in Space in Space Architecture: The New Frontier for Design Research

Authors: S. Häuplik-Meusburger, ISBN: 978-1-118-66330-1, Dec. 2014

→ read in Space Architecture: The New Frontier for Design Research

„Forty years on from the first moon landing, architecture in Space is entering a new era. Over the last decade, there has been a fundamental shift in the Space industry from short-term pioneering expeditions to long-term planning for colonisation, and new ventures such as Space tourism. Architects are now involved in designing the interiors of long-term habitable structures in Space, such as the International Space Station, researching advanced robotic fabrication technologies for building structures on the Moon and Mars …“

contributions to other books

The MARS2013 Analog Mission

The MARS2013 Analog Mission

Authors: Gernot Groemer, Alexander Soucek, Norbert Frischauf, Willibald Stumptner, Christoph Ragonig, Sebastian Sams, Thomas Bartenstein, Sandra Häuplik-Meusburger, Polina Petrova, Simon Evetts, Chan Sivenesan
Astrobiology, May, 2014

→ read in Astrobiology

We report on the MARS2013 mission, a 4-week Mars analog field test in the northern Sahara. Nineteen experiments were conducted by a field crew in Morocco under simulated martian surface exploration conditions, supervised by a Mission Support Center in Innsbruck, Austria.

research paper

Greenhouse and their humanizing synergies

Authors: S. Häuplik-Meusburger, C. Paterson, D. Schubert
Acta Astronautica, Volume 96, March-April 2014; p. 138-150, 2014

→ read in Acta Astronautica

This paper deals with the plant–human relationship in space.It provides a short overview of the history of technical greenhouses in space.Humanizing aspects of technical greenhouse systems for space are highlighted.An additional greenhouse sub-system component is proposed..

university publications

Deployable Emergency Shelter MARS

Department for Building Construction and Design – HB2, Institute of Architecture and Design, Vienna University of Technology
Studio directed by Dr. Sandra Häuplik-Meusburger, DI San-Hwan Lu and DI Polina Petrova
ISBN 978-3-200-03039-8

→ read online

university publications


Department for Building Construction and Design – HB2, Institute of Architecture and Design, Vienna University of Technology
Studio directed by Dr. Sandra Häuplik-Meusburger and DI San-Hwan Lu
Final Evaluation by Dr. Marc Cohen
ISBN 978-3-200-02861-6

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During the 2012 spring term 25 students in the Master of Architecture program realized their vision of a future research base on the Moon. Re-thinking design challenges through a change of perspective (i.e. extraterrestrial environment) has been a critical part of this design studio. This course has been accompanied by theme-specific lectures and workshops with space experts.

Students: Abele M., Badzak M., Benesch O., Czech M., Demirtas T., Galonja D., Hengl K., Heshmatpour C., Khouni A., Klaus J., Kolaritsch A., Krljes D., Küpeli B., Lang E., Lazarova Y., Lukacs D., Milchram T.,  Mörtl C., Mulic A., Nagy P., Nanu A., Pluch K., Rossetti V., Shi Y., Siedler D., Stefan K., Steinschifter M.