Waste Compaction Technology Development for Human Space Exploration Missions 2007-01-3265
Waste management is a critical component of life support systems for manned space exploration. Human occupied spacecraft and extraterrestrial habitats must be able to effectively manage the waste generated throughout the entire mission duration. The requirements for waste systems may vary according to specific mission scenarios but all waste management operations must allow for the effective collection, containment, processing, and storage of unwanted materials.
NASA's Crew Exploration Vehicle usually referred to as the CEV, will have limited volume for equipment and crew. Technologies that reduce waste storage volume free up valuable space for other equipment. Waste storage volume is a major driver for the Orion waste compactor design.
Current efforts at NASA Ames Research Center involve the development of two different prototype compactors designed to minimize trash storage space. The design specifications of the compactors being developed at NASA Ames Research Center are based on NASA's initial 18-day lunar sortie missions using the Orion spacecraft as outlined in the new Space Exploration Initiative.
This paper describes the compactor design methodology and concepts as well as a description of the current prototype hardware developed at NASA Ames for the Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle.