Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Introducing the "Moon Cube"

We are hugely proud to announce that we have recently won the contract to install the first catering outlet on the Moon, in response to an anticipated increase in space travel in the next decade. Provisionally called the “Moon Cube”, it will be used to provide a range of drinks and light snacks to both astronauts and space tourists, as well as providing a stop-off point to break up longer journeys. While it is still in the very early design stages, it is anticipated that it will be ready to install within the next seven years, and there are also longer term plans in place to create a more comprehensive service station type facility if it is a success.

The Moon Cube is being designed with custom equipment to enable it to prepare and serve specialist space food. Due to the unique environment of space, food must be safe to store for relatively long periods of time, as well as being nutritionally balanced and easy to consume in low gravity environments, so this has an impact on the catering equipment required. Later this year, we will begin working alongside a number of suppliers to create new equipment designs suitable for the project, following scheduled discussions with a number of experts to identify required features and potential challenges.

PKL Moon Cube
Initial concept drawing for the PKL Moon Cube

The Moon Cube will feature a long-range beacon to alert passing space traffic to its presence, and transmit information on food and drink availability. An integrated computer system will also be used to communicate stock level information to the client on Earth, enabling efficient stock planning. In addition to these features, the project will also require us to implement systems for regulating the unit’s temperature, as well as air filtration and waste removal systems similar to those used in existing space vehicles.

Our highly skilled design team will be working to overcome a number of unique, site-specific challenges such as low gravity and pasteurised terrain, while it is anticipated that solar panels and generators will be used to overcome a lack of services on site. Our expert transport team are experienced in delivering to challenging locations, but this will be their greatest challenge yet. Throughout the design process, we will also be liaising with a number of agencies to discuss transport options, and as with all our projects, detailed delivery and lift plans will be created in advance. 

This project is a fantastic opportunity for PKL, and follows 25 years of success in supplying catering infrastructure to prestigious projects around the world. We have started the recruitment process for a number of specialist staff to take a lead on the project, including aerospace engineers and physicists, while our existing staff will be able to provide a wealth of experience and knowledge of catering design and installation. Although the deployment is several years away, this project represents the chance to build on our strong history of catering innovation and is the start of a new era for PKL.

For more information on our Earth-based Food Cubes, visit our website.

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