Requirements Development Issues for Advanced Life Support Systems: Solid Waste Management 2002-01-2479
Long duration missions pose substantial new challenges for solid waste management in Advanced Life Support (ALS) systems. These possibly include storing large volumes of waste material in a safe manner, rendering wastes stable or sterilized for extended periods of time, and/or processing wastes for recovery of vital resources. This is further complicated because future missions remain ill-defined with respect to waste stream quantity, composition and generation schedule. Without definitive knowledge of this information, development of mission requirements is hampered. Additionally, even if waste streams were well characterized, other operational and processing needs require clarification (e.g. resource recovery requirements and planetary protection constraints). Therefore, the development of solid waste management (SWM) subsystem requirements for long duration space missions is an inherently uncertain, complex and iterative process.
The intent of this paper is to address some of the difficulties in writing requirements for missions that are not completely defined. This paper discusses an approach and motivation for ALS SWM requirements development, the characteristics of effective requirements, and the presence of those characteristics in requirements that are developed for uncertain missions. Associated drivers for life support system technological capability are also presented. A general means of requirements forecasting is discussed, including successive modification of requirements and the need to consider requirements integration among subsystems.