Aqua Blue Method for Mining Icy Regolith on the Moon

Case ID:

This invention proposes a plan and method by which to begin mining operations for resources of interest, such as icy regolith on the Earth’s Moon.

As settling activities on Earth’s Moon continue to become more feasible, there has long been interest in what raw materials can be extracted or mined and how. From the diverse mineral sources that are potentially available on the surface or underneath, one of the key materials that remain as the top interest for exploitation is icy regolith. Icy regolith is iced over mixtures of powdery dust and broken rock that is usually from the impact of meteorites on the Moon’s surface.

In this invention, the authors propose a method for a production-oriented approach for extraction of icy regolith in the permanently shadowed portions of the Moon’s surface, including site delimitation and preparation, definition of the work cycle, selection of excavation equipment, and more.


  • An effective and straightforward approach and production cycle for extraction of icy regolith on Earth’s Moon
  • Mined icy regolith can be used to produce water, fuel, and oxygen that make Moon living much more achievable and sustainable


  • Well defined method and strategy  
  • Defined unit operations and working cycles
Patent Information:
Contact For More Information:
Tariq Ahmed
Sr Licensing Manager, College of Engineering
The University of Arizona
Lead Inventor(s):
Victor Tenorio Gutierrez
Kerst Kingsbury
Kate Willa
James Nickels
Daniel Tolmachoff
Gatlan Nail