Oxygen Extraction for a Mission Life Support 881077
Conventional oxygen separation from gases has a low extraction efficiency and requires a large energy source. An innovative low power, efficient oxygen extractor could capture free oxygen from the Martian atmosphere for use in life support systems. It might also be used during the lunar oxygen separation process from the soil or a Space Station ECLSS (Environmental Control and Life Support System) for oxygen concentration and distribution.
Aquanautics Corporation received a Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) Grant from NASA's Johnson Space center to develop such a system. The contract began in January 1988.
The technology has involved a substantial research effort that is now entering into the first phase of prototype development. This paper discusses the technology in general terms and the specific work which is being performed for NASA to determine the feasibility for Martian applications.