BIOREGENERATIVE LIFE SUPPORT SYSTYEMS FOR LONG-TERM SPACE HABITATION: A CONCEPTUAL APPROACH 951689
Life Support Systems are the most critical aspect of human space exploration. Future long-term missions, such as the establishment of human-tended Lunar and Martian bases, require autonomous life support systems. A conceptual model of an Engineered Closed Controlled EcoSystem (ECCES) is presented. An ECCES provides bioregenerative capabilities by integrating human and plant modules within a waste management system (WMS). The integration of physical/chemical (P/C) and biological waste treatment processes as feedback components is suitable for supporting plant growth through hydroponics and materially closing the human and plant metabolic inputs and outputs. This top level design separates wastes into individual loops for treatment according to the specific metabolic needs of humans and plants. The means through which an integrated ECCES meets the objectives of long-term space habitation are summarized.