Browse Publications Technical Papers 2009-01-2460

Orion Emergency Mask Approach 2009-01-2460

Human rated space vehicles must provide safe breathing air to the crew, in the event of fire or other upset that affects air quality. In very short missions, like those in Mercury, the crew could remain in their flight suit. As mission duration increased, some sort of emergency breathing apparatus was used to provide safe breathing air in emergency situations. The Orion vehicle has a unique set of emergency breathing apparatus design challenges: the vehicle is small compared to shuttle and station, the vehicle does not have a pressurized supply of breathing air, the vehicle has a 30% oxygen design limit, no airlocks or alternate habitable volumes, and during lunar missions the crew members need to remain in the vehicle for many hours after an emergency. A filtering respirator shows special promise to address the needs of Orion, but a filtering respirator for combustion products has never been built and qualified for space. This paper describes the emergency breathing apparatus needs for Orion and reports the results of some filtering respirator development tests.


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