3D shape analysis of lunar regolith simulants

Bo Peng, Rotana Hay, Kemal Celik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Lunar regolith simulants are instrumental in the demonstration and validation of several space technologies, and the geometry properties are essential in understanding their mechanical and geotechnical behaviors. Although some geometric parameters (diameters, sizes, volumes, etc.) are measured, the morphology of regolith particles has not been well studied in the past decades. The main purpose of this research is thus to get insights into the particle shape and analyze their geometric properties in 3D space. In this work, micro X-ray computed tomography (micro-CT)-based reconstruction is used to extract slices of simulant samples (LHS-1). Then, image processing-based segmentation methods are applied to the slices to reconstruct individual particles. Finally, 3D spherical harmonic shape descriptors are used to analyze the surface geometry of particles and their statistics. This study proposes a general pipeline for the reconstruction, modeling, and shape analysis of simulant samples, which will be instrumental for future efficient discrete element simulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number118621
JournalPowder Technology
StatePublished - Aug 1 2023


  • Lunar soil
  • Micro-CT scanning
  • Particle morphology
  • Spherical harmonic analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemical Engineering


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