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Technical Paper

Chemical Sensor Testing for Space Life Support Chemical Processing: Part I. Moisture Sensors

In support of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration(NASA), a laboratory has been established at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) to evaluate the characteristics of chemical sensors which are candidates for use in a controlled chemical processing life support system. Such a facility is required for characterizing those sensors under development as well as those commercially available but whose functional properties are typically based upon operating in industrial environments that will not be completely synonomous with space operations. Space environments, such as an orbiting station or lunar base, will generally have different sensor requirements than terrestrial applications with respect to size, multifunctionality, sensitivity, reliability, temperature, ruggedness, mass, consumables, life, and power requirements. Both commercially available and developmental moisture sensors have been evaluated.